Kenneth Waldron

Interview Location: United States

Interview Synopsis

In this interview, Waldron discusses his career and contributions in robotics, focusing on his graduate research and his work at Ohio State and Stanford. Waldron outlines various collaborations and his involvement in robotics projects, and provides insight into the state of robotics at Stanford and the AI Lab. Commenting on the evolution, challenges, and future of robotics, he provides advice for young people interested in the field.


Ken Waldron was born in Sydney, Australia. He obtained a Bachelor of Engineering in Mechanical Engineering and Master of Engineering Science from the University of Sydney in 1964 and 1965, respectively. He completed a Ph.D. in Mechanical Engineering at Stanford University in 1969 and received a PhD from the University of Sydney in 1999. He held faculty positions at the University of New South Wales and the University of Houston before arriving at Ohio State University in 1979. Serving as Department Chairman (Mechanical Engineering) from 1993-2000, he left Ohio to join Stanford University in 2000 as Professor (Research) until his retirement in 2011. Active in several professional societies, he was editor of the ASME Transactions Journal of Mechanical Design from 1988-1992, current President of IFToMM, and past Chair of the Design of Engineering Division of ASME. Waldron's research interests focus on machine design, design of robotic systems, robotic vehicles and legged locomotion systems, and computer coordinated mechanical systems. His contributions to robotics have earned him several awards and honors, including the Machine Design Award in 1994 and the Joseph F. Engelberger Award in 1997.