The University of Texas at Dallas

Erik Jonsson School of Engineering and Computer Science


Professor Receives Two Honors

Jonsson School Professor Receives Two Honors

November 1, 2016

Dr. Mathukumalli Vidyasagar, professor of systems engineering in the Erik Jonsson School of Engineering and Computer Science, has recently received two honors.

The Department of Electrical and Computer Engineering at The University of Wisconsin, where Vidyasagar earned his bachelor’s, master’s and doctorate degrees, named him among their “125 People of Impact.” The Department, celebrating their 125th anniversary this fall, recognized those who are representative of the significant contributions their alumni and faculty have made.

For his second recognition, Vidyasagar was named a 2016 International Federation of Automatic Control (IFAC) Fellow. Founded in Paris in 1957, IFAC is the worldwide organization tasked with promoting the science and technology of automatic control in all systems. Fellows are named triennially to a restricted number of individuals who have made outstanding and extraordinary contributions in the fields of interest of IFAC as engineers/scientists, technical leaders or educators.

Vidyasagar received the accolade for contributions to robust control, robotics and statistical learning theory.

“I was extremely flattered to have been named among the 125 people who have made an impact during the 125-year history of UW’s EE Department,” said Vidyasagar, who holds the Cecil H. and Ida Green Chair in Systems Biology Science. “The list of 125 persons contains some really eminent persons, such as John Bardeen, the only person to win two Nobel Prizes in physics, Jack Kilby, inventor of the integrated circuit, Eugene Amdahl, one of the pioneers of digital computing, and many other distinguished personages. I feel truly honored to find myself in such company. I am also happy to have been elected as an IFAC Fellow,” he added.

Vidyasagar, who began his journey as an engineer at an early age, earned a bachelor’s degree in electrical engineering by age 17. At 21, he completed his doctorate, and by age 35, he was given an Institute of Electrical and Electronics Engineers fellowship for “contributions to the stability analysis of linear and nonlinear distributed systems.”

He co-authored two of the most popular textbooks on robot dynamics and control with Dr. Mark W. Spong, dean of Jonsson School of Engineering and Computer Science, as well as nine others on a variety of topics

Vidyasagar has taught at Concordia University in Montreal and the University of Waterloo in Waterloo, Canada. He has also directed the Centre for Artificial Intelligence and Robotics within the Indian government’s defense and research department.

As an administrator, he served as the executive vice president of Tata Consultancy Services, a technology firm based in India. He managed a team of 80 engineers and scientists working on advanced encryption methods, open-source software, quantitative finance and bioinformatics.

Retiring from Tata Consultancy Services in 2009, he joined the Jonsson School to establish the Department of Bioengineering. He is now a member of the Department of Systems Engineering.