New Showcase


Entrepreneurship and Innovation in Robotics

IEEE Robotics and Automation Society (RAS) and IEEE Entrepreneurship collaborated to present Entrepreneurship and Innovation in Robotics.

In this session, presenters will discuss the factors that cause startups/products to fail in the robotics space with a specific focus on technical challenges, best practices, and possibilities for improvement. We will hear case studies into the various phases of innovation and product development and learn about the circumstances that contribute to the high and lows of entrepreneurship in the robotics industry.


Robotics History: Narratives and Networks Oral Histories: Seth Hutchinson

Seth Hutchinson was born in Sellersburg, Indiana. He earned a Bachelor of Science (1983), a Master of Science (1984), and a Ph.D. (1988) in Electrical Engineering from Purdue University. In 1939 he moved University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign as a Research Assistant Professor at the Coordinated Science Laboratory and Beckman Institute and as an Assistant Professor of Electrical and Computer Engineering in 1990. From 1996 to 2003 he served as Research Associate Professor in both labs and as Associate Professor in the same department, before becoming a full Research Professor and full Professor; positions he continues to hold to date.

His research interests in robotics focus on vision-based control, path planning, planning under uncertainty, pursuit-evasion, and localization and mapping. His contributions to the field include over two hundred published works.

In this interview, Hutchinson discusses his robotics career and his contributions to the field. Commenting on his various influences, projects, and collaborations, he reflects on the evolution and challenges of robotics and provides advice to young people interested in the field.

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“Bioinspired vs. Biohybrid Design”- RAS Soft Robotics Debate

IEEE RAS TC on Soft Robotics Debate on “Bioinspired vs. Biohybrid Design”

15 February 2021


Cecilia Laschi

Metin Sitti

Ritu Raman

Talia Moore


Sam Kriegman


Bioinspiration, the development of novel materials and structures inspired by biological systems and evolution, has been the essence and main claim of Soft Robotics research. Yet, soft robots are nowhere close to mimicking the life cycle of biological creatures, i.e. growth, adaptation, morphogenesis, and returning to their starting state. Going beyond smart materials, biohybrids may be the solution to multifunctionality and biocompatibility. In this debate, we will bring together experts in Bioinspiration and Biohybrid design to discuss the necessary steps to make more competent soft robots. We will try to answer whether bioinspired research should focus more on developing new bioinspired material and structures or on the integration of living and artificial structures in biohybrid designs.


For more information on RAS Soft Robotics Technical Committee-


IEEE RAS Women in Robotics Panel Discussion

1 December 2020 at 1:00 pm EST (18:00 GMT) via Webex.

Educators everywhere are reexamining and reinventing their teaching approach to meet the challenges of delivering a high-quality education in this unprecedented year. Many are revisiting established best practices while others are looking to new ways of reaching students. In robotics education, we are facing many difficult questions: How can we best engage students in robotics material in the current teaching environment? How can we overcome perceived limitations when teaching robotics content online, especially when hardware is involved? Where should robotics education research focus to address these issues head on?

To facilitate a conversation around these important questions, the IEEE Women in Engineering - Robotics and Automation Society (WIE-RAS) hosted an online panel on best practices for teaching robotics. The diverse panel boasts experts in robotics education from a variety of disciplines, institutions, and areas of expertise:

Carlotta Berry - Electrical and Computer Engineering, Rose-Hulman Institute of Technology, passionate about robotics education, increasing underrepresented populations in STEM, and enhanced human-robot interfaces

Katie Driggs-Campbell - Electrical and Computer Engineering, University of Illinois Urbana-Champaign, explores safe and interactive autonomous systems through modeling human behavior, designing robust decision and control frameworks, and developing multi-agent validation schemes

Cecilia Laschi - Mechanical Engineering at the National University of Singapore, interests are in biorobotics, soft robotics, humanoid robotics and neurorobotics.

Iolanda Leite - Division of Robotics, Perception and Learning, KTH Royal Institute of Technology, develops social robots that can capture, learn from, and respond appropriately to the subtle dynamics of real-world situations

Karinne Ramirez-Amaro - Electrical Engineering, Chalmers University of Technology, advances artificial intelligence and robotics research in semantic representations, decision making, and human activity recognition and understanding

Panelists have taught a variety of undergraduate and graduate courses ranging from introductory robotics and applied programming to project-based design courses to specialized courses on human-centered robotics, autonomous decision-making, human perception for information technology, and intelligent robotics to name a few.

Panelists share their experience in best practices for robotics education, provide strategies for applying these practices to new courses, discuss major challenges in online robotics education and how they have overcome them, and talk about where they see robotics education headed.