Skip to main content

2010-2011 CSE Lecture Series


Title: Unifying Biology, Computation and Engineering in BEACON Center for the Study of Evolution in Action

Dr. Erik Goodman, Director of the NSF BEACON Center

Date:   February 11, 2011
Time:  10:20 am
Room: 1279 Anthony Hall

BEACON Center for the Study of Evolution in Action is an NSF Science and Technology Center funded in August, 2010.  It brings together researchers and educators studying evolution in the lab and field with those elucidating evolutionary principles using artificial (digital) organisms and those applying evolutionary methods for design of novel engineering systems.  At MSU and its partner universities Idaho, North Carolina A&T, Texas and Washington, students are learning to understand evolution in all of these domains, giving them a grasp difficult to achieve any other way.  Goodman will describe some of BEACON’s innovative research and education activities.

Erik D. Goodman is PI and Director of the BEACON Center for the Study of Evolution in Action, an NSF Science and Technology Center headquartered at Michigan State University. His research centers on application of evolutionary principles to solution of engineering design problems. He received the Ph.D. in computer and communication sciences from the University of Michigan, Ann Arbor, in 1971. He became Asst. Prof. of Electrical Engineering and Systems Science in 1972, Assoc. Prof. in 1978, and Prof. in 1984, all at Michigan State University, where he also holds appointments in Mechanical Engineering and in Computer Science and Engineering. He directed the Case Center for Computer-Aided Engineering and Manufacturing from 1983-2002, and MSU’s Manufacturing Research Consortium from 1993-2003.  He has co-directed MSU’s Genetic Algorithms Research and Applications Group (GARAGe) since its founding in 1993.  He is co-founder and vice president of Red Cedar Technology, Inc., a firm that develops design optimization software for use in industry. He was chosen Michigan Distinguished Professor of the Year, 2009, by the Presidents Council, State Universities of Michigan. Prof. Goodman was Chair of the Executive Board and a Senior Fellow of the International Society for Genetic and Evolutionary Computation, 2003-2005. He was founding chair of the ACM’s Special Interest Group on Genetic and Evolutionary Computation (SIGEVO), serving from 2005-2007.