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2007 News Releases



Joseph Sussman named AAAS Fellow

Written by:

By Denise Brehm
Civil & Environmental Engineering

Joseph M. Sussman, the JR East Professor of Civil and Environmental Engineering and the Engineering Systems Division, is one of six MIT faculty members to be elected Fellows of the American Association for the Advancement of Science for 2007, the AAAS announced today.

Election to the AAAS by one’s peers is considered a high honor, reflecting the Fellow’s “efforts toward advancing science applications that are deemed scientifically or socially distinguished,” according to the AAAS. The six MIT faculty members are among 471 new Fellows who will be presented with a certificate and a gold and blue rosette pin on February 16 during the association’s annual meeting in Boston. The colors of the AAAS pin represent science (gold) and engineering (blue).

Sussman’s research focuses on large transportation networks and Intelligent Transportation Systems (ITS). He was elected to the AAAS engineering section for his “contributions to understanding large, complex engineering systems with emphasis on transportation, freight, and traveler systems, and for pioneering work in transportation systems education.”

He has been on the MIT faculty for 40 years and is author of a widely used graduate textbook, “Introduction to Transportation Systems,” (Artech House, 2000), which has been translated into Greek, Chinese and Spanish. His latest book, “Perspectives on Intelligent Transportation Systems (ITS),” (Springer) was published in 2005.

Sussman specializes in the study of “Complex, Large-Scale, Interconnected, Open, Sociotechnical (CLIOS) Systems,” for which he has developed the CLIOS Process. He has focused recently on developing a new methodology for regional strategic transportation planning and applying it to cases in the U.S. and abroad. His work in the CLIOS area deals with transportation, technology and sustainability applied in Mexico City; Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia; and Portugal. Sussman has helped build the U.S. ITS program and regional programs within the U.S., and an “intelligent corridor” in Bangkok. He has made a comparison of ITS programs in Western Europe, Japan and the U.S. His research in both freight and passenger railroads focuses on service reliability, rail operations, maintenance, high-speed rail and risk assessment.

Sussman received the Roy W. Crum Distinguished Service Award from the Transportation Resources Board in 2001, that organization’s highest honor, and the Award for Distinguished Contribution to University Transportation Education and Research from the Council of University Transportation Centers, in 2003. In 2002 the ITS Massachusetts named its annual Joseph M. Sussman Leadership Award in his honor.

The AAAS is one of the world’s largest general scientific societies, and is publisher of the prestigious journal, Science, which has the largest paid circulation of any peer-reviewed general science journal in the world, according to the AAAS. Members of the society are nominated to the rank of Fellow by the steering groups of the association’s 24 sections, by any three Fellows, or by the AAAS chief executive officer.

The other 2007 MIT Fellows are:

Professor Jeffrey P. Freidberg of the Department of Nuclear Science and Engineering—for “distinguished contributions to research and teaching in the areas of theoretical plasma physics and magnetohydrodynamics as applied to problems in magnetic fusion.”

Klavs F. Jensen, the Warren K Lewis Professor of Chemical Engineering in the Departments of Materials Science and Engineering and Chemical Engineering, and head of chemical engineering—for the “elegant use of detailed simulations of reactive systems to gain new insight into the underlying basic physical and chemical rate processes.”

Daniel G. Nocera, the Henry Dreyfus Professor of Energy and Professor of Chemistry—for “distinguished contributions to the development of renewable energy at the molecular level, with emphasis on the splitting of water with solar light.”

, director of the Center for Environmental Health Sciences and Professor of Biological Engineering and Biology—for “distinguished contributions to cancer prevention and treatment, particularly for elucidating ways in which cells, tissues, and animals respond to carcinogenic and chemotherapeutic agents.”

Maria T. Zuber, professor and head of the Department of Earth, Atmospheric and Planetary Sciences—for “outstanding research contributions and scientific leadership in the geophysical studies of Earth and the solid planets.”

Joseph Sussman