Bruce's role is to assist Sally Davenport in leading the Challenge, lead the Sensors, Robotics and Automation research theme and oversee capacity development initiatives.
Bruce completed a BE Hons (1st class) and PhD in the Electrical Engineering Department at the University of Canterbury. After working with NZ Electricity and the DSIR in Wellington, he moved to Canada and spent ten years in the Computer Science Department at the University of Calgary.
Returning to New Zealand in 1995, he joined the Department of Electrical and Computer Engineering at the University of Auckland, where he became involved in establishing its computer systems engineering capacity and robotics laboratory. His long-term goal is to design intelligent robotic assistants that improve the quality of people's lives, with primary research interests in human-robot interaction and robot programming systems, and applications in areas such as healthcare and agriculture.
He is the director of the department's robotics group and the leader of the multidisciplinary CARES robotics team at the University of Auckland. He is the leader of the Faculty of Engineering research theme: Technology for Health, and Chairman of New Zealand’s robotics, automation and sensing association. He has been research theme leader for Sensors, Robotics and Automation and responsible for Capacity Development activities at the Challenge since its inception. He is co-chair of the IEEE technical committee on software engineering for robotics. One of his current research interests is developing robots to help care for the elderly – a multidisciplinary project undertaken with Korean researchers and companies.