IEEE Fellow is a distinction reserved for select IEEE members. The honor is conferred by the Board of Directors upon a person with an extraordinary record of accomplishments in any of the IEEE fields of interest.

If you know of an IEEE colleague who is a Senior Member or Life Senior Member in good standing, has completed five years of service in any grade of IEEE Membership and who has made an outstanding contribution to the electronic or electrical engineering profession, you can nominate this person in one of four categories:

  • Application Engineer/Practitioner
  • Educator
  • Research Engineer/Scientist
  • Technical Leader

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Nominations for the Fellow Class of 2019 are now being accepted. To learn more about the Fellow program and the nomination process, visit the Steps to Become an IEEE Fellow page.


Additional information about the IEEE Fellow program, and a list of RAS Fellows is available HERE.

Submit your application today!

The purpose of this award is to highlight and honor the achievements of the inventors with value creating ideas and entrepreneurs who propel those ideas into world-class products. This is a key element to the continuing success of robotics and automation today. Active infusion of innovation and entrepreneurship into technological advancement is regarded critical at this juncture to strengthen a healthy balance between research and practice as well as a healthy growth of industrial and commercial sectors in robotics and automation.

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These achievements will be recognized in a specially organized IEEE/IFR Joint Forum on Innovation and Entrepreneurship in Robotics and Automation, which will be held on 20 June 2018 in conjunction with the International Symposium on Robotics in Munich, Germany. The selected finalists will have the opportunity to present their story of the genesis of a successful innovative product in robotics and automation from its very inception to the final state of commercialization in a series of plenary lectures. The ultimate winner will be chosen by an evaluation board consisting of distinguished individuals from industry and academia. A prestigious plaque will be awarded to each finalist and a US$ 2,000 prize will be awarded to the winner.

Applications should describe the original work that has been translated into a commercial success. The application must include statements regarding:
- description of the innovation/product/application
- stages of the product genesis
- novelty/uniqueness of the product
- market analysis, economic viability and pathway for commercialization
- sustained competitive advantage
- current and future impact on and relevance to industry

DON'T MISS THE DEADLINE! Applications for the IERA Award must be submitted no later than 15 March 2018.
See more here:


Applications should not exceed a maximum length of 5 pages. Product descriptions and public relation material will not be accepted as an application. References and links to online material are permitted.


Please send as PDF document (< 6 MB) no later than 15 March 2018 (any time zone) to IFR Secretariat –

For additional information see: Call for Applications

The IEEE Robotics and Automation Society (RAS) is seeking applications for the Member Activities Board’s Student Activities Committee (SAC). There are openings for one Chair and one or more co‐Chairs. These positions offer great opportunities to learn more about the Society, have an international impact, and expand one’s professional network. The chair will serve for two calendar years (2018–19), and the co‐chairs for a one‐year term in 2018 and renewable for a second year.

Volunteer Hands

The IEEE‐RAS Student Activities Committee promotes student participation in the Society activities in co‐operation with all Society Boards, Committees and Working Groups, under the supervision of the Membership Activities Board. The mission of the committee includes working on issues of interest to student members and interacting with student members and student chapter branches. Current areas of focus include:

  • Lunch with Leaders held at flagship conferences (ICRA, CASE, IROS)
  • Informal social events at RAS sponsored conferences
  • Educational webinars
  • Membership development
  • SAC Website content
  • Coordination with student branch chapter chairs
  • SAC column in IEEE Robotics & Automation Magazine (quarterly publication)
  • IEEE RAS Facebook group management

The chairs of the RAS SAC are appointed by the RAS President from a slate of candidates approved by the Membership Activities Board. Candidates may be undergraduate or graduate students, but must be student members of the IEEE Robotics and Automation Society in good standing. The ideal candidate has strong social, professional, and communication skills, is willing to take part in ongoing activities and propose new initiatives. Past participation in SAC is requested but not required. There is no geographical preference.

The Chair of the SAC shall be an ex‐officio Administrative Committee member with a vote. The chair is expected to attend the semiannual Administrative Committee meetings, adjoin to the ICRA and IROS conferences. * Partial travel support (depending on the distance) is provided by the Society (up to $2000, for the chair, and $500 for co‐chairs). The Student Activities Chair shall also be an active member of the RAS Member Activities Board.

Currently, the SAC has several initiatives to promote active networking, interdisciplinary dialogues, and robotics education. Some initiatives require weekly SAC involvement while other activities are conference specific (currently developed around the RAS flagship conferences: IROS, ICRA, and CASE). More information about current activities can be found at the RAS webpage <>

Interested applicants should be:

  • Self-motivated
  • Organized
  • Responsive to e-mail discussions
  • Able to commit 5+ hours a week to SAC material, potentially more when required for specific activities (e.g. reviewing volunteer proposals, organizing conference activities, etc.)

If you wish to be considered, please complete an Application Form by 1 March 2018 and indicate whether you are applying for the Chair or Co-Chair position, and include the following information:
1. A letter indicating applicant’s interest in serving on the SAC and relevant experience (2 pages maximum)
2. A CV or résumé (2 pages maximum)
3. A letter of support from a faculty member at your college or university (preferably a current member of IEEE and RAS).

For more information on the SAC and current activities, refer to the IEEE RAS webpage.

* Upcoming IEEE RAS Flagship Conference dates and locations are as follows:
ICRA 2018: Brisbane, Australia, 21-25 May
IROS 2018: Madrid, Spain, 1-5 October
CASE 2018: Munich, Germany, 20-24 August
ICRA 2019: Montreal, Canada, 20-24 May
IROS 2019: Macau, China, 3-8 November
CASE 2019: Vancouver, Canada, 25-28 August


IEEE Transactions on Cognitive and Developmental Systems
Special issue on: "Introspective Methods for Reliable Autonomy"
Submission deadline: 28 February 2018


   As humans, understanding our own limitations, failures and shortcomings is a key to improvement and development. This knowledge is crucial for altering our behaviours, e.g. to execute tasks in a more cautious way. Correspondingly, equipping robots with a set of skills that allows them to assess the quality of their sensory data, internal models, used methods etc. will greatly improve their overall performance.
   The problem of introspection, directly or indirectly, relates to other research topics: planning, execution monitoring, active perception and mapping. Accordingly, an improved understanding of introspection in robotics has a direct impact on a large variety of application areas (e.g. search and rescue, intralogistics, assistive robotics).
   The introspection impacts the most the following aspects of robotics system: safety, reliability and the maintenance costs.
   Information on the internal state of the robot is crucial to make decisions if it is safe to execute the assigned mission considering not only the current state of the perceived environment, but also the internal state of the robot.
   Continuous monitoring of the internal state of the robot and automatic assessment can also be used to enhance the maintenance process. Information about the internal state of the robot can be used to estimate the likelihood of potential failure and tailor the efforts to prevent it or to speed up the recovery or repair process by providing detailed information to a human operator or even enable self-repair.
   Introspection takes an active role in the process of preventing of malfunctions of the robotic system and help to speed the repair process up. These two features have a direct impact on the running cost of a robotic system. Preventing unplanned interruptions in the robot operation and shortening the time of the planned interruptions has a direct impact on the cost of robot exploitation.
   It is also important to remember that introspective information is a cornerstone of all methods aiming to robotics self-improvement. It provides information crucial to the learning and development process. In this context, it is possible to draw a parallel between human and robotic system. Assessment of the internal state is important input helping to anticipate if the planned action is feasible for the agent (either human or robot). For a complex system, it is difficult to perform such assessment relying only on the predefined set of rules and conditions.
   Therefore, it is necessary to use learning algorithms which will be able to connect the preexisting internal and external conditions with the outcome of a planned action. In such a configuration, a failure became a crucial element of a learning process of an autonomous system.
   Finally, it is important to emphasis that introspection is a topic which spans across multiple fields. The introspection is originally a human ability. It is recent years when the idea of introspection is also becoming present in the field of robotics.
   Therefore, to obtain a complete picture of the problem of introspection in autonomous systems it is important to have a closer look also at psychological aspect of introspection. Moreover, the impact of introspection in the context of the cognitive science cannot be overlooked.

The primary topic of this issue is to present work on:
How to assess the quality of internal models, methods, sensory data and the hardware used by robots and how to alter their behaviour using this information?

The aim of this special issue is fourfold:
* Survey the state of the art in the field.
* Define open research questions in the field.
* Provide a venue to present the recent developments in the field of introspection.
* Present system papers showing how introspection is integrated and affects the performance of a system.


This special issue is addressed to researchers interested in the development of introspective methods for robust autonomy
across different research areas. We expect to receive submissions relevant for following research fields, but to name a few: Long-term autonomy, safe operation of robots under uncertainty, performance awareness, reliable-aware operation,
cooperative robotics, cognitive and learning robots, developmental robotics, Human-Robot Interaction. Introspection
is broad term covering a set of topics. Topics relevant to this special issue includes, but are not limited to:
* Internal assessment (Map quality assessment, Perception quality assessment, Classification quality assessment)
* Analysis (Failure analysis, Execution monitoring, Meta-reasoning)
* Introspection-related actions (Failure recovery, Reconfigurable robots, Planning with uncertainty)


28 February 2018 - Deadline for manuscript submissions.
15 June 2018 - Notification of authors
15 July 2018 - Deadline for submission of revised manuscripts
15 September 2018 - Final decisions


Manuscripts should be prepared according to the “Information for Authors” of the journal found HERE and
submissions should be made through the IEEE TCDS Manuscript centre at selecting the category “SI: Introspective Methods for Reliable Autonomy”.


The IEEE Transactions on Cognitive and Developmental Systems (TCDS) focuses on advances in the study of development and cognition in natural (humans, animals) and artificial (robots, agents) systems. It welcomes contributions from multiple related disciplines including cognitive systems, cognitive robotics, developmental and epigenetic robotics, autonomous and evolutionary robotics, social structures, multi-agent and artificial life systems, computational neuroscience, and developmental psychology. Articles on theoretical, computational, application-oriented, and experimental studies
as well as reviews in these areas are considered.


Yaochu Jin
Department of Computer Science, University of Surrey
Surrey, United Kingdom


Tomasz Piotr Kucner
Centre for Applied Autonomous Sensor Systems, Örebro University
Örebro, Sweden

Sören Schwertfeger
School of Information Science and Technology, ShanghaiTech University
Shanghai, China

Martin Magnusson
Centre for Applied Autonomous Sensor Systems, Örebro University
Örebro, Sweden

Achim J. Lilienthal
Centre for Applied Autonomous Sensor Systems, Örebro University
Örebro, Sweden

Rudolph Triebel
Institute of Robotics and Mechatronics, German Aerospace Center
Oberpfaffenhofen-Weßling, Germany

14th IEEE International Conference on Automation Science and Engineering

IEEE CASE 2018, sponsored by the IEEE Robotics and Automation Society (RAS), will be held in Munich, Germany, 20-24 August 2018. It is the flagship automation conference of IEEE RAS and constitutes the primary forum for cross-industry and multidisciplinary research in automation. Its goal is to provide a broad coverage and dissemination of foundational research in automation among researchers, academics, and practitioners. This edition of the conference will be under the motto Knowledge-Based Automation.
To allow customized products and shortened time to market on the one hand, and longetivity and evolvability of networked automated production systems on the other hand, we need to learn from engineering and operation of systems. CASE 2018 will focus on knowledge as a key factor for future automation engineering and science.

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Conference Tracks

  • Cyber physical production systems and industry 4.0
  • Cloud computing for automation
  • Big data and data mining
  • Automation and control
  • Domain specific software & systems engineering
  • Mechatronics
  • Discrete event systems
  • Model evolution (systems and software)
  • Human in the loop (in engineering and operation)
  • Building automation

Important Dates

15 January: Open special session/ tutorial/workshop proposal submission due
29 January: Open special session/tutorial/ workshop acceptance notification
15 February: Special session proposal submission due
15 February: Deadline for RA-L submission 
1 March: Deadline for Regular/Special session submissions
1 April: Work in Progress/Industrial paper submission due
15 May: Paper acceptance notification
15 June: Final paper submission due


For more information see:


The IEEE Robotics & Automation Society recognizes and congratulates the following individuals for their outstanding accomplishments and service to RAS and the robotics and automation community. They will be honored during an award luncheon to be held during the IEEE International Conference on Robotics & Automation (ICRA 2018) on 24 May 2018 at the Brisbane Convention & Exhibition Venue, Brisbane, Australia. Please join us in congratulating these outstanding recipients!


RAS Pioneer Award

Vijay Kumar - University of Pennsylvania (PA), United States
"For pioneering work on the theory and practice of cooperative robotics and networked unmanned aerial vehicles"

Daniela Rus - Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT), United States
"For pioneering work in the science and design of distributed and self-reconfiguring robotic systems"

RAS George Saridis Leadership Award in Robotics and Automation

Antonio Bicchi  - University of Pisa and IIT Istituto Italiano di Tecnologia, Italy
"For his leadership in the robotics and automation community through research innovation, technology transfer, education and professional development"

Bill Hamel - University of Tennessee (TN), United States
"For continued leadership that has significantly contributed to the growth and development of robotics in hazardous environments and to the IEEE Robotics and Automation Society"

IEEE RAS Distinguished Service Award

Torsten Kröger - Karlsruhe Institute of Technology (KIT), Germany
"For his broad and creative contributions to conference, technical, and industrial activities of RAS"

Frank C. Park - Seoul National University, South Korea
"For his dedication and notable contributions to RAS publications and governance"

Early Academic Career Award in Robotics and Automation

Jens Kober - Delft University of Technology (TU Delft), The Netherlands
"For fundamental contributions to learning and application of versatile motor skills in robotics"

Julie Shah - Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT), United States
"For contributions to human-robot collaboration and transition of results to real world applications"

Early Government or Industry Career Award in Robotics and Automation

Alexander Kernbaum - SRI International (CA), United States
"For his work on robotic actuation and the invention of new transmission mechanisms"

RAS Most Active Technical Committee Award

Technical Committee on Multi-Robot Systems
Co-Chairs: Nora Ayanian, Robert Fitch, Antonio Franchi, Lorenzo Sabattini

RAS Chapter of the Year Award

IEEE Connecticut Robotics and Automation Chapter - United States
Co-Chairs: Biao Zhang, Haoyu Wang

Heartfelt congratulations to Matthew T. Mason, selected recipient of the prestigious 2018 IEEE Robotics and Automation Award for "Scientific and educational contributions to the mechanics of manipulation enabling real-world robot autonomy, and for leadership in robotics." He will receive this award during the 2018 IEEE/RSJ International Conference on Intelligent Robots and Systems (IROS) in Madrid, Spain on 1-5 October 2018.

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Matthew T. Mason’s contributions to advancing the mechanics of grasping and manipulation are essential to enabling robots to physically interact with the world. A proponent of minimalism in robotic manipulation, his innovative thinking provides simple solutions that allow robots to perform sophisticated tasks, such as parts feeders used for automatic assembly and packaging. He established the geometrical and mechanical foundations for robotic manipulation, and he pioneered pushing and planar sliding as important processes in manipulation. As founder of Carnegie Mellon University’s Manipulation Lab, Mason supervised development of the origami-folding robot, desktop mobile manipulators, scale-invariant grasping, throwing, striking, regrasp, and the use of simple single-actuator. He was also a key architect of the Robotics Roadmap that led to the National Robotics Initiative.

An IEEE Fellow, Mason is a professor of computer science and robotics at Carnegie Mellon University, Pittsburgh, PA, USA.


The IEEE Robotics and Automation Award was established in 2002 by the IEEE Board of Directors, and is presented for contributions in the field of robotics and automation. It includes but is not limited to: manufacturing automation; robotics and automation in unstructured environments; sensor design; integration and fusion; robot design; modeling; planning and control; methodologies for robotics and automation, and the quality of the nomination. This Award is sponsored by the IEEE Robotics & Automation Society.

Past Recipients can be found HERE


Growth in world population, increasing urbanization and changing consumption habits means demand for food production is predicted to increase dramatically over the coming decades. This increased demand in food production must be achieved despite challenges such as climate change, a limited supply of new arable land and difficulties in sourcing skilled farm labour. Robotics and automation are likely to play a key role in meeting these challenges over the coming decades by helping to improve farm productivity. A key component of these future autonomous agricultural systems is the development of robust and accurate perception systems for perceiving the agricultural environment. Recently, the development of these agricultural perception systems in both research and industry has been spurred on by the emergence of new and increasingly cost-effective sensing modalities such as multi- and hyperspectral imaging, high resolution cameras, LiDAR, radar and centimetre precision GPS. These sensing modalities have been complemented by advances in the size and affordability of computing power and increasingly capable algorithms. This special issue is supported by IEEE RAS Agricultural Robotics and Automation Technical Committee (TC-AgRa) and IEEE-RAS Technical Committee on Mobile Manipulation (TCMM)

Topical Area

This special issue on RA-L will focus on current advances in the area of autonomous farming. Papers are solicited on all areas directly related to these topics, including but not limited to:

  • Robots for pruning, thinning, harvesting, mowing, spraying, and weed removal
  • Aerial and ground robotic platforms for soil/crop monitoring, prediction, and decision making
  • Aerial Robotics for Environmental and Agricultural applications
  • Sensing and yield-estimation in precision agriculture
  • Fruit and flower detection and recognition
  • Approaches to cost-effective sensing for day/night continuous operation
  • Long-term autonomy and navigation in unstructured farming environments
  • Manipulators and platforms for soil preparation, seeding, crop protection, and harvesting
  • Adaptive sampling and informative data collection
  • Adaptive technologies that manage plants, soil or animals according to as-sensed status
  • Theoretical and empirical decision-oriented data-analysis techniques including machine learning


Special Issue Submission Opens: 17 February 2018
Special Issue Submission Deadline: 24 February 2018 (same as RAL/IROS)
First Decision Communicated to Authors: 21 May 2018
Final Decision Communicated to Authors: 25 July 2018
Accepted RAL Papers appear on IEEEXplore: 23 August 2018

Conference Option

This Special Issue will be associated with the 2018 IEEE/RSJ International Conference on Intelligent Robots and Systems (IROS), 1-5 October 2018 in Madrid,Spain and accepted articles will be presented at the conference. Authors of submissions commit that, if accepted by the IROS Program Committee, they will present the work at IROS.

How to submit

Authors will be available to submit your papers to our special issue via RAS paperplaza (RA-L submission system). There will be a menu on the submission system for our SI, Precision Agricultural Robotics and Autonomous Farming Technologies. But the submission system will be opened on 17 February 2018, and will be closed on 24 February 2018. So please keep in mind the submission is only available from 17 February 2018 for one week.


Advisory Committee

Bruce MacDonald (University of Auckland, New Zealand)
Roland Siegwart (ETH Zurich, Switzerland)
Peter Corke (Queensland University of Technology, Australia)


Ho Seok Ahn, corresponding organizer -, University of Auckland, New Zealand
Inkyu Sa -, ETH Zurich, Switzerland
Feras, Queensland University of Technology, Australia

The Basel Peace Forum 2018 inspires new and unconventional ideas for peacebuilding. To achieve this, carefully selected leading personalities and decision-makers from business, diplomacy, academia, and civil society are invited. The Basel Peace Forum will take place on 14 January 2018 at the Museum of Art (Kunstmuseum), and on 15 January 2018 at the Congress Center in Basel, Switzerland.

Raj Madhavan

Raj Madhavan will be a Guest Speaker for one of the Innovation Forums.

Raj is Founder & CEO, Humanitarian Robotics Technologies, LLC and works at the intersection of robotics & automation and technology-policy.





Humanity expects a lot from the development of full artificial intelligence: support for the ending of wars, for example. But at the same time, many fear a loss of control and unintended negative consequences. This forum gathers together experienced technologists and scientists to analyze the role of artificial intelligence in changing warfare and preventing violent conflicts. Furthermore, it explores the impact of virtual platforms on building trust through social and commercial interactions in countries emerging from conflicts.

For more information see


Full-day Forum, International Conference on Robotics and Automation (ICRA), 24 May 2018


Humanitarian robotics, automation, and artificial intelligence technologies will play an ever-increasing role in global development, particularly in developing economies, in the coming years sooner than one might think or be willing to admit. We are already witnessing several instantiations of such applications in established domains ranging from manufacturing and defense to emerging areas such as disaster response, firefighting, and education, to name a few (for instance, see for a listing of the projects being carried out under the auspices of the IEEE RAS Special Interest Group on Humanitarian Technology). The United Nations 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development consists of seventeen Sustainability Development Goals (SDGs) that include building resilient infrastructures for sustainable industrialization and fostering innovation (Goal 9) to strengthening and revitalizing global partnerships for sustainable development (Goal 17) among others.

Adoption of emerging technologies tends to be slow in developing countries due to reasons that are usually beyond GDP rates and standard of living indices. Whilst the potential of these technologies is for the most part undeniable, the challenge lies in making them reliable, cost-effective and easily accessible for the masses by taking into account socioeconomic, cultural, environmental, and sustainability factors. Additionally, ethical, legal, and societal considerations of robotics, automation, and other emerging AI technologies are of paramount importance as the demarcation lines between individual privacy, safety, and security and those of the collective society get blurred without timely governance and regulation.

To address these concerns, the Sustainable Humanitarian Technologies Forum will take on the above issues centered on the following three themes:

  • Robotics, Automation, and AI Technologies for the benefit of humanity
  • Technology-Policy and Ethical, Legal and Societal (ELS) Aspects of Emerging Technologies
  • Global South Considerations (particularly those of developing countries in Asia, Africa, and Latin America)

The Forum will bring together experts and thinkers from both technology and public policy domains. The format will consist of keynote addresses and regular presentations with a mini panel discussion after each thematic session covering the gamut of issues stemming not only from research, development, and deployment standpoints but also those from public perception of robotics, automation, and AI. An hour-long panel discussion will conclude the Forum with audience participation both at the conference venue and elsewhere (via Twitter and Facebook). As a record of the Forum, we intend to capture key points from speakers, salient points from the discussions, identify missing gaps and future steps, and summarize them in a post-event White Paper to formulate action items.

If you are working in the above areas and if the goals and themes of the Forum are of interest to you, we would love to hear from you! We are soliciting presentations from researchers and practitioners from industry, academia, NGOs, NPOs, regulatory, and funding agencies. Please email us a 2-page (max.) write-up of your background, experience, and what you would like to present at the Forum to In addition, include a separate section in your submission on how your  participation/presentation would benefit the Forum. Note that you are not required to write a paper but your presentation at the Forum will be archived post-event for the benefit of the community.

Depending on the level of interest, selected presenters will be invited to write an expanded article for a special issue journal. Along with your submission, let us know if you would be interested in submitting an article to such a special issue.


Deadline for Submission of 2-page write-up: 15 February 2018 (email to
Notification of Acceptance: 25 February 2018
Forum: 24 May 2018 (confirmed)

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