Chen Zhou is an Associate Professor and the Associate chair for undergraduate studies at the Stewart School of Industrial and Systems Engineering at Georgia Tech. The program graduates over 350 undergraduate students and ranked number one by US News consecutively since 1995. His current research interest is in sustainable engineering for human well-being. Specifically, his research is to use human well-being as the objective for project and system evaluations. Human well-being has social, environmental and economic dimensions. Ultimately, sustainability is about human sustainability. For example, human well-being needs air, water, nutrition, sleep, health, safety, livelihood and respect. However, some of these are not explicit in traditional project or system evaluations.

He has given keynote talks on “Logistics Education,” at The First Sino-US Logistics Forum in 2005, “The Success of ISyE in Georgia Tech,” at Industrial Engineering Greater China Conference in 2012, “The Future of Industrial Engineering from a Rearview Mirror,” at 3rd International Asia Conference on Industrial Engineering and Management Innovation in 2012, “The Industrial Engineering Education in the US – design strategies and examples,” at First National Industrial Engineering Education Forum, 2013, and “ISE and Sustainability,” IISE Regional Conference in 2018.

His research focus includes sustainable supply chain for human well-being, distribution center design and manufacturing systems. One of the projects is to find the high price our society is paying for low-cost processed food, such as health, mental health, education, livelihood and productivity.  Another project is to find the high price society is paying for people who were lacking well-being in early life, such as productivity, healthcare, crime and law enforcement. He is trying to find sources of challenges and potential solutions to these vital problems.

He is currently working with faculty to update the curriculum with a focus on industrial and systems engineering for human well-being. Industrial and Systems Engineering is well-positioned to address this important and urgent goal. Human well-being needs social, environmental and economic well-being, or the triple bottom line (TBL). Industrial engineering started Human Factors, which has an objective to “optimize human well-being and overall system performance”. Industrial engineering focuses on data analytics, optimization and stochastic process. These are vital for the complex system in TBL. Industrial Engineering is the home of the Engineering Economy, which is important for performing project evaluations. 

He has won the best paper award for IIE Transactions on Design & Manufacturing in 2009, Most Intellectual Award from Georgia Tech Ambassadors in 2009, Advisors for CICMHE Design competitions, the IISE student honor society Alpha Pi Mu and IIE Innovations in Curriculum Competition for “An Effective Approach to Integrated Learning in Capstone Design” with Steve Hackman and Joel Sokol, 2012.

Dr. Zhou received BSME from Tianjin University (China) in 1982, an MSME from Pennsylvania State University in 1984 and a Ph.D. in industrial engineering from Pennsylvania State University in 1988.