Conor Walsh is the Paul A. Maeder Professor of Engineering and Applied Sciences at the John A. Paulson Harvard School of Engineering and Applied Sciences, an Associate Faculty Member at the Wyss Institute for Biologically Inspired Engineering and an Adjunct Associate Professor in the Department of Physical Therapy & Athletic Training at Boston University. He is the is the founder of the Harvard Biodesign Lab, which brings together researchers from the engineering, industrial design, apparel, biomechanics, physical therapy and business communities to develop and translate new disruptive robotic technologies for augmenting and restoring human performance. Example application areas include, enhancing the mobility of healthy individuals, restoring the mobility of patients with gait deficits, assisting those with upper extremity weakness to perform activities of daily living and preventing injuries of workers performing physically strenuous tasks.
His multidisciplinary research spans engineering, biology and medicine and has led to multiple high impact scientific papers. The soft exosuit technology is now commercially available in clinics for gait retraining through a collaboration with ReWalk Robotics and a lab spin-out, Verve Motion, has launched a back assist product for workers performing physically strenuous tasks in industry. He has been invited to give talks at government, industry and academic events and has served on research review panels including the National Science Foundation and National Institutes of Health. He is dedicated to training the next generation of biomedical engineering innovators and lab alumni have gone on to successful careers in academia, entrepreneurship, and high tech R&D positions in industry.
Additionally, he co-founded the Soft Robotics Toolkit that serves as a platform the lab’s extensive STEM outreach activities. He is the winner of multiple awards including the Presidential Early Career Award for Scientists and Engineers, the Early Academic Career Award in Robotics and Automation from the IEEE RAS, the National Science Foundation Career Award and the MIT Technology Review Innovator Under 35 Award.