Brazilian Professor Elected IEEE President
José Roberto Boisson de Marca becomes the first person selected from outside North America to lead IEEE in 2014
14 November 2012 – Professor José Roberto Boisson de Marca, of the Center for Science and Technology (CTC) of the Pontifical Catholic University of Rio de Janeiro (CTC/PUC-Rio), has been elected 2014 president of IEEE, the world’s largest technical professional organization. His election marks the first time in the organization’s history that IEEE will be led by someone who resides outside of North America.
IEEE and its more than 400,000 members in 160 countries advance technology through highly cited publications, conferences, technology standards, and professional and educational activities.
De Marca is an IEEE Fellow with a background in telecommunications and wireless technologies. He identified continuing to support IEEE’s priorities to strengthen collaboration with industry and attracting young professionals to the organization as two of his goals. Longer-term, de Marca hopes to influence an increasing number of professionals in Brazil to become IEEE members.
"The world has changed in recent decades, and it is crucial to encourage industry professionals to dedicate time in dissemination of the results of their work and pursue positions of leadership in organizations such as IEEE,” de Marca said. “IEEE is already recognized worldwide as an institution that excels in enabling engineering and technology professionals to develop technological solutions that benefit humanity.”
De Marca has been an IEEE member for over 40 years, first joining as a student. He has held several leadership positions including Vice President of Technical Activities and President of the IEEE Communications Society. As Chair of the Future Directions Committee, he initiated programs that promote the impact of emerging technologies, including smart grid and cloud computing. During his involvement with the Humanitarian Technology Challenge Committee, de Marca supported IEEE member efforts to develop and deploy data connectivity for remote health locations in Peru and a low-cost energy solution in Haiti.
While teaching for 34 years at the Center for Telecommunication Studies of the Center for Science and Technology of PUC-Rio, he has conducted collaborative research with major companies and universities in Brazil and abroad, including Lucent Technologies, Siemens, Petrobras, University of California, Los Angeles (UCLA), Dresden University of Technology (Germany), and the Polytechnic Institute of Torino (Italy). He was also a scientific advisor to AT&T Bell Laboratories.
In addition to IEEE, de Marca is a member of the Brazilian National Academy of Sciences, the National Academy of Engineering, and a member of the advisory council of Finep, Brazil’s largest R&D/innovation funding agency. He is also the founding president of the Brazilian Telecommunications Society and a former director of the Brazilian National Council for Development of Science and Technology (CNPq).