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From Discrete Event Systems to Beyond

On the occasion of Prof. Stéphane Lafortune’s 65th birthday, we are thrilled to host this symposium to honor and celebrate his many outstanding technical and professional contributions.

Former students, post docs, and close collaborators will present short technical talks reflecting the breadth of Stephane’s research interests and the impact of his research and scholarship in many diverse fields and careers.

Please join us for this exciting event.

The symposium is open to public. Registration is required.

Stéphane Lafortune

Stéphane Lafortune

N. Harris McClamroch Professor of Electrical Engineering and Computer Science

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Outside of lurie building in spring

Symposium dates & location

August 10 – 11, 2023

Lurie Engineering Center, Johnson Rooms (3rd floor)

1221 Beal Avenue Ann Arbor, MI 48109
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About Stéphane

An international leader in the field of discrete event systems, Stéphane Lafortune’s research spans many problem domains including modeling, diagnosis, control, optimization, and applications to cyber and cyber-physical systems.  His work has resulted in fundamental contributions to the field and has opened new areas of research and applications, including, fault diagnosis, decentralized supervisory control, deadlock avoidance in multi-threaded software, modular and receding-horizon supervisory control, privacy enforcement by obfuscation, and cyber-security in supervisory control.

Stéphane is currently the N. Harris McClamroch Collegiate Professor of Electrical Engineering and Computer Science.  During the course of his long and distinguished career at the University of Michigan that began in 1986, Stéphane has supervised 24 doctoral students, has mentored more than 15 postdoctoral scholars and has collaborated with a large number of highly acclaimed researcher and scholars worldwide.  His students and collaborators hail from more than 20 countries. They have held, and hold today, senior positions in academia, industry and government across the globe and have themselves graduated outstanding doctoral students, making him an endeared “grand” advisor. 

Individually, and through these many rich collaborations, Stéphane has received many awards for his research including the Presidential Young Investigator Award from the National Science Foundation, the Axelby Outstanding Paper Award from the Control Systems Society of the IEEE (twice), the David E. Liddle Research Excellence Award from the College of Engineering in 2018 and the U-M Inventor Recognition Award.

An exemplary teacher, Stéphane has taught over 15 courses over the course of his career at Michigan, he has been heavily involved in major curricular changes to the undergraduate program, and served as Associate Chair for Graduate Affairs. He is the author of the textbook A Guide to Signals and Systems in Continuous Time (Springer, 2022). He is a co-author of Introduction to Discrete Event Systems (Third Edition, Springer, 2021) used in several undergraduate and graduate courses in the U.S. and worldwide. Testimony to his outstanding mentorship, also is the recognition his students have continued to receive through the years as winners of the University’s Distinguished Dissertation Awards, Rackham Predoctoral Fellowships and the University’s prestigious Barbour Scholarship for female students from Asia and the Middle East.

In recognition of his dedication to teaching and to the student body, Stéphane was voted the HKN Professor of the Year in ECE in 2019 by undergraduate and graduate students in the department of Electrical Engineering and Computer Science.  In addition to the Vulcans Education Excellence Award, Stéphane is also the recipient of the College of Engineering’s Kopf Service Excellence Award.

Stéphane is a Fellow of the IEEE and of the International Federation of Automatic Control, past Editor-in-Chief of the Journal of Discrete Event Dynamic Systems: Theory and Applications and a former Chair and member of the steering committee of the Workshop on Discrete Event Systems (WODES).

Hailing from Montréal, Canada, Stéphane, obtained his degrees from École Polytechnique de Montréal (B.Eng), McGill University (M.Eng), and the University of California at Berkeley (PhD), all in electrical engineering.

Stéphane and his wife Michele enjoy spending time with their children and grandchildren, cooking holiday meals together, hiking in national parks, and visiting his relatives in Québec.

Stéphane’s students and collaborators are delighted to organize and participate in this workshop to honor and thank their dear friend, colleague, advisor, mentor on the occasion of his 65th birthday.

Symposium Organizers:

  • Dr. Sahika Genc, Principal Applied Scientist, Amazon Search
  • Dr. Meera Sampath, Associate Dean for Research, Watson College Of Engineering and Applied Science, Binghamton University
  • Ann Stals, Alumni Engagement and Events Manager, Electrical and Computer Engineering, University of Michigan
  • Prof. Vijay Subramanian, Associate Professor, Electrical Engineering and Computer Science, University of Michigan


College of Engineering, University of Michigan

Electrical and Computer Engineering, University of Michigan