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Kim J. Vicente

Kim J. Vicente, Ph.D., P.Eng.

Biography | Books | Curriculum Vitae (CV; PDF format)

Kim J. Vicente is founding director of the Cognitive Engineering Laboratory at the University of Toronto where he is a professor in the departments of mechanical engineering, computer science and electrical and computer engineering. At the age of 34, he was promoted to full professor, the youngest in the 175 year history of the University of Toronto. Professor Vicente is also an adjunct professor of psychology at Miami University, Ohio, and a registered Professional Engineer in Ontario.

Vicente has conducted extensive research on cognitive engineering in applications as diverse as animation, aviation, engineering design, infectious diseases, food management, medicine, network management, nuclear power, and petrochemical processes. His research has led to technology transfer to AECL Research, Alias|Wavefront, Honeywell Technology Center, Mitsubishi, and particularly, the Toshiba Nuclear Engineering Laboratory. Professor Vicente also helped change the way a multinational Big Pharma corporation of 70,00 employees in 120 countries and $16 billion of annual sales does its business.

In 1985, Vicente received a B.A.Sc. in industrial engineering from the University of Toronto, in 1987 a M.S. in industrial engineering and operations research from the Virginia Polytechnic Institute and State University, and in 1991 a Ph.D. in mechanical engineering from the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign. During 1987-1988, Professor Vicente spent one year as a visiting scientist in the Section for Informatics and Cognitive Science of the Risø National Laboratory in Roskilde, Denmark, where he worked with his mentor, Professor Jens Rasmussen. During 1991-92, he was also on the faculty of the School of Industrial and Systems Engineering at the Georgia Institute of Technology. During 2002-2003, Vicente was the thirty-first Jerome Clarke Hunsaker Distinguished Visiting Professor of Aerospace Information Engineering and Minta Martin Lecturer at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology.

Professor Vicente has been presented the first round Premier's Research Excellence Award, valued at $100,000, and was the first engineer to receive the McLean Award, the University of Toronto's wealthiest and most prestigious award for basic research. Vicente also received the Natural Sciences and Research Council E.W.R. Steacie Memorial Fellowship, Canada's most prestigious prize for young academics in all areas of science and engineering, the Outstanding Professional Achievement Award from the Federation of Portuguese Canadian Business and Professionals, the COPA Award for Outstanding Vision/Leadership from the Portuguese Canadian National Congress, the Brunswik New Investigator Award from the Brunswik Society, the award for the best paper published in the Human Factors Society Bulletin in 1991, and the outstanding abstract award in the area of Clinical Application of Technology from the Society for Technology in Anesthesia. In 1999, he was chosen by TIME Magazine as one of 25 Canadians under the age of 40, who is a "Leader for the 21st Century who will shape Canada's future".

Professor Vicente was an Associate Editor of the IEEE Transactions on Systems, Man, and Cybernetics, and on the editorial boards of Human Factors and the International Journal of Cognitive Ergonomics. He serves on the editorial board of Theoretical Issues in Ergonomics Science. Vicente worked Capitol Hill by serving as the first Canadian researcher ever to be invited to be on the Standing Committee for Human Factors of the National Academy of Sciences/National Research Council. Vicente is also a Senior Fellow and a member of the Corporation of Massey College at the University of Toronto.

In 1999, Vicente authored the first textbook in the area of cognitive engineering, Cognitive Work Analysis: Toward Safe, Productive, and Healthy Computer-based Work, published by Lawrence Erlbaum Associates. His latest book, The Human Factor: Revolutionizing the Way We Live with Technology, was published by Alfred A. Knopf Canada in Canada (2003), Routledge in the U.S. (2004), Les Éditions Logiques in Québec (2004), and Ediouro in Brazil (2005). This book received the National Business Book Award and the Science in Society General Audience Book Award, and was a finalist for the Canadian Booksellers Association Libris Award for Non-fiction Book of the Year.

Professor Vicente has provided an expert opinion to the media on issues related to people and technology. He has been quoted, or his work featured in, numerous outlets, including: CTV, Globe & Mail, Maclean's, CBC Radio, and the Toronto Star.

Vicente has been invited to lecture in 11 countries on 4 continents, including lecture tours in Europe, Japan, and Australia. He has acted as a consultant to industry and government, including the Canadian Nuclear Agency, the Australian Defence Science and Technology Organisation, Honeywell Technology Center, Microsoft Corporation, NASA Ames Research Center, Nortel Networks, the U.S. Institute of Medicine, the U.S. National Academy of Engineering, and the U.S. Nuclear Regulatory Commission.

Professor Vicente has invented two areas of research — ecological interface design and cognitive work analysis — leading to hundreds of articles authored by many researchers around the world. Vicente's research has led to 1 patent, 2 books, 3 co-edited books, 178 refereed articles, 16 book chapters, 17 invited keynote addresses, and 54 technical reports. He is also listed in Canadian Who's Who. One of his journal articles, co-authored with Jens Rasmussen, has been chosen as one of the most important papers in the 110 year history of human factors.