Ivan Sutherland

Ivan Sutherland
Visiting Scientist, ACM Fellow


Fourth Avenue Building 105

Asynchronous Research Center


Faculty Website:


h.D. Massachusetts Institute of Technology

M.S. Caltech

B.S. Carnegie Institute of Technology 

Research Interests:

  • Design of self-timed and asynchronous circuits, systems, design methods, and design tools

Ivan E. Sutherland (M’62) received his B.S. degree from the Carnegie Institute of Technology, his M.S. degree from the California Institute of Technology, Pasadena, and his Ph.D. degree from the Massachusetts Institute of Technology, Cambridge, in 1963, all in electrical engineering. He holds honorary degrees from Harvard University, the University of North Carolina, and the University of Utah. He joined Sun in 1990 as a Sun Fellow, Sun’s highest technical rank. He leads a small group working on asynchronous systems; his group develops asynchronous circuit methodologies and design techniques for fast CMOS circuits and applies them to new hardware architectures. His book, Logical Effort, published in 1999 with joint authors Sproull and Harris, describes the mathematics of designing fast circuits. His 1963 MIT Ph.D., Sketchpad, is very widely known, as is his early work on what is now known as Virtual Reality. He is author of 36 patents, as well as numerous publications and lectures. Dr. Sutherland’s honors include the Turing Award, Kyoto Award and the Von Neumann Award. He is a Fellow of the ACM and a member of both the National Academy of Engineering and the National Academy of Sciences

Professional Affiliations:

  • Association for Computing Machinery Fellow
  • Member, United States National Academy of Sciences
  • National Academy of Engineering member   

Awards and Recognition:

  • 2012 Kyoto Prize in the category of advanced technology
  • 2016 National Inventors Hall of Fame Inductee
  • 1998[9] IEEE John von Neumann Medal  
  • 1996 The Franklin Institute's Certificate of Merit
  • 1994 Electronic Frontier Foundation EFF Pioneer Award
  • 1993 ACM Software System Award
  • 1988 Turing Award
  • 1986 IEEE Emanuel R. Piore Award
  • 1972 National Academy of Engineering First Zworykin Award
  • 1996 CyberEdge Journal Virtual Reality Pioneer Award

Selected Publications:  

1.     Sutherland, 1963, Ph.D. Thesis, Massachusetts Institute of Technology, Sketchpad, A Man-Machine Graphical Communication System.

2.     Ivan Edward Sutherland, Robert F. Sproull, David, Logical Effort: Designing Fast CMOS Circuits, Academic Press, 1999.

3.     I. E. Sutherland, "Three-dimensional data input by tablet," in Proceedings of the IEEE, vol. 62, no. 4, pp. 453-461, April 1974.

4.     R. J. Drost, R. D. Hopkins, R. Ho and I. E. Sutherland, "Proximity communication," in IEEE Journal of Solid-State Circuits, vol. 39, no. 9, pp. 1529-1535, Sept. 2004.

5.     Hoon P., Anping He; Roncken, M.; Xiaoyu Song; Sutherland, I., Modular timing constraints for delay-insensitive systems, Journal of Computer Science and Technology, v 31, n 1, p 77-106, Jan. 2016.