Dr. Harrison Kim is an award-winning educator, researcher, and designer in complex systems design and sustainability -- engineering design, manufacturing, analytics, and systems optimization. He is a Professor in the Department of Industrial and Enterprise Systems Engineering at the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign (UIUC) and the director of the Enterprise Systems Optimization Laboratory. He is also affiliated with the Computational Science and Engineering Program and the Beckman Institute at the University of Illinois.

Dr. Kim’s research focuses on a variety of areas of complex systems design and sustainability. His current research topics are user-centered sustainable product design; energy systems engineering; product design analytics; multi-scale, multidisciplinary optimization; green product portfolio design and manufacturing. Application areas are automotive, consumer electronics, heavy-duty equipment, national security, commercial/military system of systems, and information technology. Research sponsors and collaborators include the National Science Foundation (NSF), Sandia National Labs (SNL), Caterpillar Inc., Deere and Co., and the National Center for Supercomputing Applications (NCSA).

Dr. Kim has received numerous recognitions including the National Science Foundation's CAREER Award, Dean’s Award in Excellence in Research (formerly Xerox Award; Associate Professors with highest research accomplishments for the last five years), Best Paper Award in ASME Design for Manufacturing and Life Cycle Conference, Gold, Silver and Bronze medals in national design competitions (Lincoln Arc Welding Award as a faculty advisor), and news media coverage in the USA Today and the Chicago Tribune.

Harrison Kim earned his Ph.D. degree at the University of Michigan in 2001 in the area of Engineering System Design and Optimization in Mechanical Engineering under the supervision of Prof. Panos Papalambros. He joined the University of Illinois in 2005 after postdoctoral training under Prof. Wei Chen at Northwestern University and has been leading the Enterprise Systems Optimization Lab. Prior to joining Illinois, he held positions in research and consulting -- the US Army Automotive Research Center, Northwestern University, and a Business-IT consulting company.

Areas of Interest

Professor Kim's research interests are in a variety of areas of system design and optimization utilizing mathematical programming, simulation, data mining, and informatics. Particularly his research has been concerned with (1) engineering system design and development, (2) data mining driven product portfolio design, and (3) multilevel multidisciplinary optimization. His research approach is based on mathematical programming and optimization including his original contribution to the analytical target cascading ( He publishes actively in research societies -- ASME, AIAA, INCOSE. He teaches systems related courses - Optimal System Design (Product Design and Development), Design for Six Sigma, Introduction to Engineering Design, and Senior Capstone Project Design.

Contact Information

Office: 315 Transportation Building
Mailing Address:
117 Transportation Building MC-238
104 S. Mathews Ave.
Urbana IL 61801
Phone: (217) 265-9437
Fax: (217) 244-5705
e-mail: hmkim at


Teaching Honors

Research Honors

Public Service Honors