The past few years have seen a significant increase of research activities focusing on the use of active or inherent material compliance in robotic systems, generally known as soft robotics. The underlying reason is the importance of soft and deformable structures to develop robotic systems that are safer, cheaper and more adaptable than the level that can be achieved by the conventional rigid-material robots. Soft robotic systems are characterized by several unique aspects like their elastic and deformable bodies, large number of degrees of freedom, possible use of unconventional material and the involvement of intrinsic passive mechanical dynamics. In order to properly handle the characteristics, it is crucial to understand the modern view of intelligence, commonly referred to as embodied intelligence or morphological computation, which emphasizes the importance of the task distribution among the brain or controller of a robot, the morphology such as shape, size and materials composing the robot; as well as the environment. In this modern view of intelligence, optimizing the design of the soft robots are therefore of a great importance. While the design optimization can be either or both led by machines and/or humans, or taking inspiration from biological systems, it will eventually decide the behavior and characteristics of the robot.

The special issue of “Design Optimization of Soft Robots” in IEEE Robotics & Automation Magazine aims to summarize the state of the art and disseminate the current advances on the design optimization of soft robots. The desired outcome of this special issue is a general consensus of the shared scientific goals, the relevant perspective and challenges in the research field, as well as high impact applications.

Topics of Interest
We invite both original research or review/position papers of topics related to design optimization of soft robots, both those focusing on the use of active compliance or inherent material compliance. The topics include but not limited to the followings:

Additive manufacturing for model-free design automation
Bio-inspired approaches for design optimization of soft robots
Brain-soft body co-optimization
Design of artificial skin and stretchable sensors
Design optimization for soft and safe physical human-robot interactions
Design optimization in continuum robots
Design optimization in soft arms, manipulation and grasping
Design optimization in self-healing soft robots
Design optimization through modeling and simulation of soft bodies
Morphological computation and embodied intelligence
Optimizing soft actuator design
Soft modular robots
Soft robot design optimization for energy efficiency
Wearable robots design optimization

Tentative Schedule/Important Dates

1 February 2020 - Submission deadline

10 April 2020 - End of the first review round

20 April 2020 - First decision recommendation to EiC by GEs

1 May 2020 - First decision communicated to authors by EiC

15 June 2020 - Revised paper submitted\Start of the second round of review

1 August 2020 - End of the second review round

10 August 2020 - Final decision recommendation to EiC by GEs

20 August 2020 - Final acceptance decision communicated to authors

1 September 2020 - Guest Editorial, Order of Publication and Cover Story\Pictures to EiC by GEs

10 September 2020 - final manuscripts uploaded by authors

20 September 2020 - final manuscripts forwarded to publisher

10 December 2020 - issue mailed to all members


Submission Procedures

The submission procedures can be obtained from the IEEE Robotics & Automation Magazine website: Papers submitted to the Special Issue will undergo the usual reviewing process of IEEE Robotics & Automation Magazine. For further information on this Special Issue, please refer to the web site of the IEEE Robotics & Automation Magazine.

ieee wie purple

WiE Luncheon at IROS 2019

Tuesday, 5 November from 12:00-13:30

Room L1-RAS on Level One, the Venetian Macao Resort Hotel, Macao, China

The networking luncheon provides the opportunity to foster discussion on the role of women in robotics and automation, inspire girls and promote collaborations and initiatives to advance women in leadership.  As the goal for this event is to be more than a Lunch for women, but a Lunch with women.  Therefore, men are more than welcome to participate and enjoy the discussion. 

Program: Panel Discussion on Best Practices:  Becoming a RAS Leader through Conference Organization

There is NO CHARGE for this luncheon, however space is limited. Please register in advance using this link!

More than 220 Local and Regional Chapters of the IEEE Robotics and Automation Society are active around the world. Among other activities, local RAS chapters sponsor or cosponsor minisymposia, student competitions, and continuing education workshops. Local RAS chapters also provide valuable professional contacts, especially for engineers who may have few co-workers who are robotics or automation professionals. Congratulations and welcome to the following newly organized IEEE Robotics and Automation Society Chapters.


Congratulations and welcome to the following newly organised RAS Chapters:

Region 1


  • Trinity College Robotics and Automation Society Student Branch Chapter in the Connecticut Section

Region 5


  • IEEE Denver Section Joint Chapter, Information Theory/Computer/Robotics and Automation Societies

Region 8


  • Princess Sumaya University for Technology Robotics and Automation Society Student Branch Chapter


  • Maharaja Surajmal Institute of Technology Robotics and Automation Society Student Branch Chapter

Region 9


  • University Federal do Rio Grande do Norte Robotics and Automation Society Student Branch Chapter in the Bahia Section


  • Concepcion University De Robotics and Automation Society Student Branch Chapter in the Chile Sur Section


  • Universidad de los Andes Robotics and Automation Society Student Branch Chapter
  • Universidad Tecnologica De Bolivar Robotics and Automation Society Student Branch Chapter


  • Instituto Tecnologico de Toluca Robotics and Automation Society Student Branch Chapter

Region 10


  • New South Wales Section Robotics and Automation Society Chapter


  • Independent University Bangladesh (IUB) Robotics and Automation Society Student Branch Chapter
  • Rajshahi University of Engineering & Technology Robotics and Automation Society Student Branch Chapter


  • NSS College of Engineering Robotics and Automation Society Student Branch Chapter in the Kerala Section
  • A.D. Patel Institute of Technology Robotics and Automation Society Student Branch Chapter in the Gujarat Section
  • Maharaja Surajmal Inst Of Tech Robotics and Automation Society Student Branch Chapter in the Delhi Section


  • University of Engineering and Technology - Lahore Robotics and Automation Society Student Branch Chapter

Sri Lanka

  • University of Ruhuna Robotics and Automation Society Student Branch Chapter

Congratulations to the IEEE Robotics and Automation Society members recently elevated to Senior Member status by the IEEE Admission and Advancement (A&A) Senior Member Review Panel.


To be eligible for application or nomination, candidates must:

  • be an engineer, scientist, educator, technical executive or originator in IEEE-designated fields;
  • have been in professional practice for at least ten years;
  • have shown significant performance over a period of at least five of those years.


In addition, candidates for Senior Member grade must supply three references from current IEEE members holding the grade of Fellow, Senior Member, or Honorary Member.

For more information, visit or Email


Taif Al Obaidi

Orlando Section

University of Central Florida

Mohammad Al-Shabi

Jordan Section

University of Sharjah

Sven Behnke

Germany Section

University of Bonn, Germany

Saroj Biswas

Philadelphia Section

Temple University

Aymeric Bonnaud

France Section

Naval Group

Mike Borowczak

High Plains Section

University of Wyoming

Pinar Boyraz

Sweden Section

Chalmers University of Technology

Adrijan Bozinovski

Republic Of Macedonia Section

University American College Skopje

Ramachandra Budihal

Bangalore Section

Indian Institute of Science

Sindhu Preetham Burugupally

Wichita Section

Wichita State University

Daniel Casner

Oakland-East Bay Section

Sonos, Inc.

W Cebuhar

Connecticut Section


Fernando De la Rosa

Colombia Section

Universidad de los Andes

Christian Debrunner

Denver Section

Lockheed Martin

Kristen Dorsey

Springfield Section

Smith College

Gyorgy Eigner

Hungary Section

Óbuda University

Fausto Ferreira

Italy Section

Centre for Maritime Research and Experimentation

Gabriele Ferri

Italy Section

NATO Centre for Maritime Research and Experimentation

Daniele Fontanelli

Italy Section

University of Trento

Matthew Garratt

Australian Capital Terr Section

The University of New South Wales Canberra

Selvakumar Gopalasamy

Madras Section

SRM Institute of Science and Technology

Jonathan Hurst

Oregon Section

Oregon State University

Loay Ismail

Qatar Section

Qatar University

Endra Joelianto

Indonesia Section

Bandung Institute of Technology

Aaron Johnson

Pittsburgh Section

Carnegie Mellon University

Michael Kaess

Pittsburgh Section

Carnegie Mellon University

Sungchul Kang

Seoul Section

Korea Institute of Science and Technology

Jana Kosecka

Northern Virginia Section

George Mason University

Swagat Kumar

Bangalore Section

Tata Consultancy Services

Rafiq Lakhani

Karachi Section

Rastek Technologies

Xuguang Lan

Xian Section

Xi'an Jiaotong University

Dimitri Lefebvre

France Section

University Le Havre

Chaomin Luo

Mississippi Section

Mississippi State University

Samer Mohammed

France Section

Universite Paris-Est Créteil (UPEC)

Meeko Mitsuko Oishi

Albuquerque Section

University of New Mexico

Suja P

Bangalore Section

Amrita School of Engineering

Heyder Paez Logreira

Colombian Caribbean Section

Universidad de la Costa

Dimitra Panagou

Southeastern Michigan Section

University of Michigan

Sarosh Patel

Connecticut Section

University of Bridgeport

Francois Pomerleau

Quebec Section

Laval University

Santanu Pradhan

Kolkata Section

The Institute of Photonic Sciences

M Arifur Rahman

Hawaii Section

University of Hawaiʻi at Mānoa

Sivakumar Rathinam

Houston Section

Texas A&M Engineering

Christopher Reardon

Washington Section

US Army Research Laboratory

Fabio Ruggiero

Italy Section

University of Naples Federico II

Jose Maria Sabater Navarro

Spain Section

Miguel Hernandez University

Minoru Sasaki

Nagoya Section

Gifu University

Davide Scaramuzza

Switzerland Section

University of Zurich and ETH Zurich

Hyoung Il Son

Busan Section

Chonnam National University

Jae-Bok Song

Seoul Section

Korea University

Matthew Spenko

Chicago Section

Illinois Institute of Technology

Ning Sun

Beijing Section

Nankai University

Tao Sun

Beijing Section

Tianjin University

Girma Tewolde

Northeast Michigan Section

Kettering University

Hf Machiel Van Der Loos

Vancouver Section

The University of British Columbia

Stavros Vougioukas

Sacramento Valley Section

University of California, Davis

Phuoc Vu

Buenaventura Section


Robert Wagoner

Tucson Section

Ridgetop Group

Xiangyu Wang

Nanjing Section

Southeast University

Jeffrey Watkins

Philadelphia Section

Chao Xu

Nanjing Section

Zhejiang University

Youssef Zaz

Morocco Section

Abdelmalek Essaâdi University

On the recommendation of the IEEE Standards Association’s (IEEE-SA) Awards and Recognition Committee (ArCom) and the approval of the association's Board of Governors, we are pleased to announce that Craig Schlenoff has been selected recipient of the IEEE-SA Standards Medallion “For significant contributions to IEEE Standards through by serving as the Associate Vice President of Standardization in the IEEE Robotics and Automation Society, Chairing the Core Ontologies or Robotics Standards Group, and serving at the Vice-Chair of the Robot Task Representation Standards Group.”

The IEEE-SA Standards Medallion is awarded for major contributions to the development of standards. Further information about the award, including a list of past recipients, may be found at:

The award will be presented on 8 November 2019 in New Brunswick, New Jersey, U.S.A. 


Craig Schlenoff small

Dr. Craig Schlenoff is the Group Leader of the Cognition and Collaboration Systems Group, the Associate Program Manager of the Robotic Systems for Smart Manufacturing Program, and the Project Leader of the Agility Performance of Robotic Systems project in the Intelligent Systems Division at the National Institute of Standards and Technology. His research interests include knowledge representation/ontologies, intention recognition, and performance evaluation of autonomous systems and industrial robotics. He has led multiple million-dollar projects addressing performance evaluation of advanced military technologies and agility performance of manufacturing robotic systems. He has published over 150 journal and conference papers, guest edited three journals, guest edited three books, and written four book chapters. He is currently the Associate Vice President for Standardization for the Industrial Activities Board in the IEEE Robotics and Automation Society and the co-chair of the IEEE Robot Task Representation Working Group, was previously the chair of the IEEE Ontology for Robotics and Automation Working Group and has served as the Program Manager for the Process Engineering Program at NIST and the Director of Ontologies at VerticalNet. He also teaches two courses at the University of Maryland, College Park: “Calculus” and “Building a Manufacturing Robot Software System.” He received his Bachelor’s degree from the University of Maryland, his Master’s degree from Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute, and his PhD from the University of Burgundy (France).

Easy Links