Professor André van Schaik

PositionAndré van Schaik

Research Program Leader: Biomedical Engineering and Neuroscience (BENS)

Chair: MARCS Executive Committee


André van Schaik received the M.Sc. degree in electrical engineering from the University of Twente, Enschede, The Netherlands, in 1990 and the Ph.D. degree in electrical engineering from the Swiss Federal Institute of Technology (EPFL), Lausanne, Switzerland, in 1998.

In 1998 he was a postdoctoral research fellow in the Department of Physiology at the University of Sydney, funded by fellowship from the Garnett Passe and Rodney Williams memorial foundation. In 1999 he became a Senior Lecturer in the School of Electrical and Information Engineering at the University of Sydney and promoted to Reader in 2004.

In 2011 André became a research professor at Western Sydney University. His research focuses on three main areas: neuromorphic engineering, bioelectronics, and spatial audio. He was identified as a world leader in neuromorphic engineering research in May 2006 by an independent article in IEEE Spectrum, the IEEE largest circulation magazine.

He has authored more than 100 papers and is an inventor of more than 30 patents. He is a founder of three start-up companies: VAST Audio, Personal Audio, and Heard Systems.

Research Interests

Reverse engineering the brain

The brain creates a coherent interpretation of the external world based on input from its senses. Yet data from the senses are unreliable and confused. How does the brain determine what is out there in the world around it? BENS will conduct neurophysiological and psychophysical investigations combined with theoretical, computational and electronic modelling studies to discover how the brain achieves this. The outcomes of this research will then be applied to create electronics sensors with built in brains.

Neuromorphic Engineering and Intelligent Sensors

Neuromorphic Engineering is a subfield of Electrical Engineering that aims to apply knowledge of how signals are processed in the brain to build electronic signal processing systems that vastly outperform current digital signal processing systems. Current 'smart' sensors are generally sensors with a built-in computer. What BENS aims to develop are smart sensors with a built-in brain.

Qualifications and Honours

  • ARC Queen Elizabeth II Fellowship 2008-2012
  • ARC Research Fellowship 2003-2007
  • Fellow IEEE, 2014
  • PhD, Electrical Engineering – Swiss Federal Institute of Technology, Lausanne, Switzerland, 1998
  • MSc, Electrical Engineering – University of Twente, Enschede, The Netherlands, 1990


  • Research Program Leader: Biomedical Engineering and Neuroscience (BENS)
  • Chair, MARCS Executive Committee


For a full listing of my publications please see my personal publications page.(opens in a new window)

Contact André
Phone+61 2 4736 0668
LocationWestern Sydney University Penrith campus (Kingswood)