A series of resolutions and laws passed between 1977 and 1992 resulted in May now being recognized as Asian American, Native Hawaiian, and Pacific Islander Heritage Month in the US. In HFES, a significant portion of our members self-identify as Asian, Native Hawaiian, or Pacific Islander. This May, we want to take the opportunity to recognize several individuals who have made important contributions to the field of Human Factors and Ergonomics (HF/E), the Society, or both. This list is not exhaustive, but rather was created to highlight a variety of contributions from individuals at different points in their careers.
Andy Imada, PhD, has been a contributor and leader in the HF/E community for several decades. Along with Japanese colleagues, Dr. Imada developed the concept and coined the term ‘participatory ergonomics’ (Noro & Imada, 1991). His leadership and service to the HF/E community includes serving as HFES Secretary-Treasurer in 2008-2009 and President of HFES in 2014-2015. Dr. Imada served as President of the International Ergonomics Association from 2009-2012. Dr. Imada is a consultant and an entrepreneur. His consulting company is A.S. Imada & Associates and his area of focus is macroergonomics.
Caroline Cao, PhD, is currently a Member-at-Large of the HFES Executive Council. Prior to that she served as the HFES Secretary-Treasurer (2019-2020). Both of these offices are elected positions, each involving 3 years of service to the Society. Prior to serving in those roles, Dr. Cao served as the Chair and the Program Chair of the HFES Health Care Technical Group, and Chair of the HFES Council of Technical Groups (COTG). In addition to her contributions to the HF/E community through her service to HFES, Dr. Cao has contributed to HF/E at an international level. In 2019, she was a Visiting Professor at the Max-Planck-Institute for Intelligent Systems, Haptic Intelligence Department, Stuttgart, Germany and she currently heads the Franco-Australian 'Chaire' (collaboration) for Industry of the Future (Industry 4.0), in France. Dr. Cao’s contributions to HF/E also include those made while she was an educator and researcher at Tufts University (2001-2011) and Wright State University (2012-2021).
Hongwei Hsiao, PhD, has made important contributions to the HF/E community as a scientist and Bureau Chief at the US National Institute for Occupational Safety and Health (NIOSH) in the areas of anthropometry and robotics. Dr. Hsiao and colleagues at NIOSH conducted important research that produced anthropometric databases for truck drivers, fire fighters, and emergency medical service providers. Most recently his research on the anthropometry of law enforcement officers was published in Human Factors (Hsiao et al., 2021), providing the first source of anthropometric data for women LEOs, as well as much needed current data on men LEOs. Data from these studies are intended to be used in designing vehicles, uniforms, and protective gear that will better serve these populations. Dr. Hsiao currently serves as Professor and Rogelio “Roger” Benavides Memorial Chair at Texas A&M University. He has served as the Chair of the HFES ErgoX Robotics Track since 2020.
Erin Chiou, PhD, has made important contributions to HFES and the HF/E community. Dr. Chiou chaired the HFES Diversity and Inclusion Committee from 2017-2019, during which time she made significant progress in expanding the types and regularity of demographic data gathering by HFES, with the goal of improving the understanding of whom the Society is serving and whom we are missing. Dr. Chiou is the co-editor, along with Rod Roscoe, PhD, and Abigail Wooldridge, PhD, of the award-winning book Advancing Diversity, Inclusion, and Social Justice Through Human Systems Engineering, published in 2019 by CRC Press. The book received a 2020 OAT Award from Choice for recognition as an Outstanding Academic Title. In 2021 Dr. Chiou and co-author Dr. Roscoe published an important white paper for HFES, entitled “Assessing Authentic Diversity in the Human Factors and Ergonomics Society: An HFES White Paper”. Dr. Chiou is an Assistant Professor at Arizona State University; among her research foci are human-automation interaction, trust in automation, and human-agent cooperation in complex systems.
Finally, we would like to remind everyone of the interesting and informative 2021 interview of Mr. Khahn Vu, the Executive Director of the Society of Asian Scientists and Engineers (SASE), which was organized, hosted, and conducted by HFES members Christopher Pan, PhD, HeeSun Choi, PhD, and Jing Feng, PhD. This webinar is part of the HFES Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion Webinar Series: Listening and Acting, and can be viewed here: https://www.hfes.org/Events/D_I_Webinar_Series
Hsiao, H., Whisler, R., Weaver, D., Hause, M., Newbraugh, B., Zwiener, J., . . . Brake, T. (2021). Encumbered and Traditional Anthropometry of Law Enforcement Officers for Vehicle Workspace and Protective Equipment Design. Hum Factors, 187208211064371. doi: 10.1177/00187208211064371
Noro, K., & Imada, A.S. (1991). Participatory Ergonomics. London: Taylor & Francis.
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