Cecilia Laschi is Professor of robotics at the National University of Singapore, in the Department of Mechanical Engineering. She is Co-Director of CARTIN – Centre for Advanced Robotics Technology and Innovation. She is on leave from Scuola Superiore Sant’Anna, Italy, The BioRobotics Institute (Dept. of Excellence in Robotics & AI). She graduated in Computer Science at the University of Pisa and received a Ph.D. in Robotics from the University of Genoa. She was JSPS visiting researcher at Waseda University in Tokyo.
Cecilia Laschi is best-known for her research in soft robotics, an area that she pioneered and contributed to develop at international level. She investigates fundamental challenges for building robots with soft materials, by taking a bioinspired approach. She explores marine applications of soft robots and their use in the biomedical field, with a focus on eldercare. She has worked in neuro-robotics, applying brain models on humanoid robots. She is the author/co-author of more than 300 scientific papers.
She is Editor-in-Chief of Bioinspiration & Biomimetics, Specialty Chief Editor of Soft Robotics in Frontiers in Robotics & AI, and member of the Editorial Boards of several robotics journals, including Science Robotics and IEEE Robotics & Automation Letters. She has been member of evaluation panels for funding agencies, like NSF, European Commission (ERC), HFSP, and national research agencies.
She is senior member of IEEE, of the Engineering in Medicine and Biology Society (EMBS) and of the Robotics & Automation Society (RAS), where she is AdCom member and founding co-chair of the TC on Soft Robotics. She founded and chaired the 1st IEEE-RAS International Conference on Soft Robotics (RoboSoft) in 2018 and she serves in its Steering Committee. She is Program Chair of IEEE/RSJ International Conference on Intelligent Robots and Systems (IROS) 2024. She is Co-Chair of the Gordon Research Conference on Robotics 2024. She is member of AAAS and of national scientific societies, like the National Group of Bioengineering (GNB) and the Institute of Robotics and Intelligent Machines (I-RIM).
She co-founded the spin-off company RoboTech srl, in the sector of edutainment robotics.
Many thanks to Jennie Hills from the Science Museum in London for taking Cecilia’s headshot.