Helping Robots to Reason More Effectively

Manuela Veloso

Over the course of her career, Manuela Veloso (GRS’86) has followed her interests in computer science and then robotics and autonomous reasoning, putting herself at the forefront of one of the most rapidly evolving fields in science. She received her Licenciatura and MSc in Electrical Engineering from the Instituto Superior Tecnico in 1980 and 1984, respectively. She then jumped continents and careers, enrolling at BU and entering the rapidly developing field of computer science. She received an MA from BU in Computer Science in 1986. She then enrolled at Carnegie Mellon University, where she received her PhD in Computer Science in 1992.

Manuela’s research is on the effective construction of autonomous agents where cognition, perception, and action are combined to address planning, execution, and learning tasks. Not too long after completing her PhD, honors starting coming her way. Manuela is the recipient of a NSF CAREER award in 1995 and of the Allen Newell Medal for Excellence in Research in 1997. More recently, she was selected as a 2006/07 Radcliff Institute Fellow and was awarded the 2009 ACM/SIGART Autonomous Agents Research Award.

Currently, she is the Herbert A. Simon Professor at the School of Computer Science, Carnegie Mellon University. She has served as the president of the International RoboCup Federation and a fellow of the American Association for Artificial Intelligence. She is also the author of one book on “Planning by Analogical Reasoning” and editor of several other books. Manuela has authored over 200 journal articles and conference papers. In 2009, she received one more award: the BU Computing Alumni Network (CAN) Distinguished Alumna Award.