Campus & Community

24th Annual INCOSE International Symposium Accentuates Stevens’ Contribution to the Systems Engineering Discipline

In recent years, the practice of systems engineering has grown exponentially in the development of complex systems. With the rapid pace of technological advancements in spaces that impact the lives of billions of humans around the world – enterprises such as energy, infrastructure, socio-technical, finance and healthcare are increasingly applying systems engineering principles and practices to enhance the intelligence, efficiency and resilience of their systems.

Developing and enhancing the critical knowledge that can address the fast-changing complexities of the world is an on-going process at the School of Systems and Enterprises (SSE) at Stevens Institute of Technology.

“We are focused on fostering the next generation of technical leaders and critical thinkers who can spark game-changing innovations based on real-world needs,” said Dean Dinesh Verma. "To facilitate that, we leverage our comprehensive research and graduate systems education programs, coupled with our partnerships with organizations focused on advancing the state of the art and practice of systems engineering in industry, academia and government. The result is the application of a ‘systems approach’ to explore the fundamental structures underlying the complex systems and to frame and model problems so they can be rigorously addressed."

At the 24th Annual International Council on Systems Engineering (INCOSE) Symposium, recently hosted in the illuminated city of Las Vegas, participants had a chance to explore the scope and depth of SSE’s contribution to the field of systems engineering. With more than 400 attendees, the symposium brought together speakers and delegates from industry, academia and government, with sponsors and exhibitors from the entire international systems engineering community.

“As a valued partner of INCOSE, the leading global organization focused on advancing the state of the art and practice of systems engineering for the benefit of humanity and the planet, SSE has aligned its academic and research intelligence and is working in tandem with INCOSE to support the objective of producing the most impactful systems engineering information in the world, grounded in effective practice and research,” said Dr. Robert Cloutier, associate professor and Systems Engineering program lead at SSE.

Stevens' systems engineering thought leadership recognized at INCOSE

Dr. Jon Wade, professor at SSE, along with Sandy Friedenthal, noted author and past Lockheed Martin Fellow received the INCOSE Distinguished Service Award for creating A World in Motion - Systems Engineering Vision 2025.’  The Vision, co-authored by Friedenthal and Wade along with six other prominent INCOSE members sets forth INCOSE’s vision of the role systems engineering will play in shaping the future over the next decade.

Dr. Oli deWeck, editor-in-chief of the INCOSE Systems Engineering Journal presented the Systems Engineering Journal Best Paper Award for 2013 to two former* SSE faculty members; Dr. Ali Mostashari and Dr. Jennifer Bayuk for their paper ‘Measuring System Security.’ 
* The paper was scripted while the former faculty members were with SSE.

Mr. Rick Dove, adjunct professor at Stevens, was honored as an INCOSE Fellow. The distinction of INCOSE Fellow is reserved for an elite group of engineering professionals – individuals who are respected for their broad impact within the systems engineering community in both academia and industry.

Student-centricity is what defines a Stevens education

Ph.D. candidate and the first US Army Armament Research, Development and Engineering Center (ARDEC) Fellow, Matthew Cilli, received the prestigious INCOSE Best Paper Award for Tradeoff Study Cascading Mistakes of Omission and Commission.’ The paper was co-authored by systems engineering experts, Dr. Gregory Parnell and Dr. Dennis Buede.

Elder Tranoy, a Norwegian student who received his Master’s in Systems Engineering as part of a collaborative program between Stevens and Buskerud University College in Kongsberg was awarded the Best Student Paper for ‘Reduction of Late Design Changes through Early Phase Needs Analysis.'

Siddhartha Agarwal, a doctoral candidate in systems engineering at Missouri University of Science and Technology, was awarded the 2014 Stevens Doctoral Award for Promising Research in Systems Engineering and Integration from the INCOSE Foundation.

Mark Mallet and Paul Mascia, two recent Steven’s graduates presented “The development of a system to benignly disable a vessel”, a senior design project to the INCOSE Corporate Advisory Board. As part of the SERC Capstone Marketplace, which is a culmination of the undergraduate experience, where systems engineering tools and processes learnt in class are applied to a major design project, the project has been very successful and has received a provisional patent.

Nicole Hutchison, SERC research engineer and doctoral candidate, presented a paper ‘Early Findings from Interviewing Systems Engineers who Support the U.S. Department of Defense’, based on research findings from the Helix Project. Helix is a SERC project designed to build an understanding of the landscape of the systems engineering workforce.

For the students, the event was an amazing opportunity to get global perspectives on the "big" system engineering problems. As they collectively summarized, "At Stevens, we are given opportunities to attend professional conferences to present research papers, to network and to start developing skills that will enable us to achieve our greatest potential – academically and personally.” 

Along with being a great platform for systems engineering practitioners and researchers to network, share ideas, knowledge and practices, and recent successes, the symposium is also an opportunity to learn of emerging trends, experiences and issues in systems engineering. "For SSE and Stevens, it is gratifying to have our peers from around the globe recognize our faculty and student contributions to the systems engineering discipline,” said Cloutier.

A Stevens presence all around

In addition to the prestigious faculty and student awards, Stevens leadership played a prominent role at the INCOSE symposium overall. Several members of the community presented thought leadership papers and participated on panel discussions showcasing the rich diversity of engineering systems-related problems and their solutions- in a nutshell, reinforcing the importance of all the critical systems thinking being created and taught at SSE.

Attendees at the symposium also learnt more about the interdisciplinary academic programs and on-going research activities by visiting the Stevens exhibit booths, and as described by one visitor, “the kind of systems engineering thinking that is taking place at Stevens is of one of the highest academic level in the world.”