GRASP / ESE Seminar - Pramod Khargonekar, NSF Director Of Engineering, "Challenges And Opportunities In Engineering Research And Education: A View From NSF"

Presenter: Pramod Khargonekar (Homepage)

Event Dates:
  Friday November 7, 2014 from 11:00am to 12:00pm

The main goal of this talk is to share thoughts and perspectives on key opportunities and challenges in engineering research; education and broadening participation, and innovation ecosystem as seen from my perspective at the National Science Foundation. I will begin with a discussion of the overall context, drivers, and trends that are driving our strategies. I will then give a high level overview of some of the key priorities and initiatives in the Engineering Directorate (ENG) at NSF.  The talk will conclude with a brief discussion of certain overarching issues including broader impacts, grand challenges, and new models for interdisciplinary research.

Presenter's Biography:

Pramod Khargonekar received B. Tech. Degree in electrical engineering from the Indian Institute of Technology, Bombay, India, in 1977, and M.S. degree in mathematics and Ph.D. degree in electrical engineering from the University of Florida in 1980 and 1981, respectively. 

Khargonekar was an assistant professor of electrical and computer engineering at the University of Florida from 1981 to 1984; associate professor from 1984 to 1988 and professor from 1988 to 1989 of electrical engineering at the University of Minnesota; and professor of electrical engineering and computer science from 1989 to 2001 at The University of Michigan. He was Chairman of the Department of Electrical Engineering and Computer Science from 1997 to 2001 and also held the position of Claude E. Shannon Professor of Engineering Science at The University of Michigan.  From 2001 to 2009, he was Dean of the College of Engineering at the University of Florida. He has held the Eckis Professorship in Electrical and Computer Engineering the University of Florida from 2001. He served as Deputy Director of Technology at ARPA-E, U. S. Department of Energy in 2012-13. From March 2013, he has been serving as Assistant Director of the U. S. National Science Foundation leading its Engineering Directorate.

Khargonekar’s research and teaching interests are centered on theory and applications of systems and control. His early work was on mathematical control theory, specifically focusing on robust and H-infinity control analysis and design. During the 1990’s, he was involved in a large multidisciplinary project on applications of control and estimation techniques to semiconductor manufacturing. His current research and teaching interests include systems and control theory, machine learning, and applications to smart electric grid and neural engineering.