Professor Rosalind W. Picard

Professor Rosalind W. Picard, Sc.D., FIEEE is founder and director of the Affective Computing Research Group at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT) Media Lab, co-director of the Media Lab’s Advancing Wellbeing Initiative, and faculty chair of MIT’s Mind+Hand+Heart Initiative. She has co-founded Affectiva, Inc. providing emotion AI technology, and Empatica, Inc. creating sensors and analytics to improve health. Empatica created the first AI-based smart watch cleared by FDA in Neurology (for monitoring seizures).

Picard holds a bachelor’s degree in electrical engineering with highest honors from the Georgia Institute of Technology, and master’s and doctorate degrees, both in electrical engineering and computer science, from MIT. She started her career as a member of the technical staff at AT&T Bell Laboratories designing VLSI chips for digital signal processing and developing new algorithms for image compression. In 1991 she joined the MIT Media Lab faculty. She became internationally known for constructing mathematical models for content-based retrieval of images and for pioneering methods of automated search and annotation in digital video, including the creation of the Photobook system. The year before she was up for tenure she published the book Affective Computing, which became instrumental in starting a new field by that name. Today that field has its own journal, international conference, and professional society. Picard also served as a founding member of the IEEE Technical Committee on Wearable Information Systems in 1998, helping launch the field of wearable computing. In 2019, Picard was elected to the National Academy of Engineering for contributions in affective and wearable computing.

Picard has authored or co-authored over 300 scientific articles and chapters spanning computer vision, pattern recognition, machine learning, human-computer interaction, wearable sensors and affective computing.