Dr. Lawrence Burns, Professor, Engineering Practice, Industrial and Operations Engineering University of Michigan and Director on Sustainable Mobility Columbia University
Dr. Lawrence Burns completed a distinguished career with General Motors, serving as corporate vice president of Research & Development. In addition to driving innovation into today’s vehicles, Burns led GM’s development of a new automotive “DNA” that marries electrically driven and “connected vehicle” technologies.
Today he is Professor, Engineering Practice, Industrial and Operations Engineering, at the University of Michigan and an advisor to numerous organizations including Google, Hess Corporation and VantagePoint Capital Partners. He serves as a Director of the Roundtable on Sustainable Mobility at The Earth Institute, Columbia University.
He has been a major voice for the “reinvention” of the automobile and the diversification of transportation energy. Within GM, he personally championed vehicle electrification, “connected” vehicles, fuel cells, bio-fuels, advanced batteries, autonomous driving, and a series of innovative concept vehicles. He has been a leading advocate for design and technology innovation focused on the total customer experience and the application of operations research.
A leading advocate for diversified transportation energy, connected vehicles and autonomous driving, Dr. Burns is co-author of Reinventing the Automobile: Personal Urban Mobility for the 21st Century (MIT Press, January, 2010). He holds a Ph.D. in Civil Engineering from UC, Berkeley, an M.S. in Engineering / Public Policy from the University of Michigan and a B.S. in Mechanical Engineering from the GM Institute. He was elected a Member of the National Academy of Engineering in 2011.