line decor
line decor










The photo shows Professor Derek O. Northwood.



  1 March 2021


It has come to our attention that Professor Derek O. Northwood, Distinguished University Professor and Professor of Engineering Materials in the Department of Mechanical, Automotive and Materials Engineering at the University of Windsor, Windsor, Ontario, Canada, retired as of 1 March 2021.

Professor Northwood has an earned doctorate in chemical physics (crystallography) from the University of Surrey (UK) and a BSc (Eng) in engineering metallurgy from the Imperial College, University of London (UK). He is a licensed Professional Engineer in Ontario, Canada (PEng) and is a Chartered Professional Engineer (CPEng; NER), APEC Engineer, and International Professional Engineer (IntPE(AUS)), in Australia. In the 40+ years as an academic, Professor Northwood has held various administrative positions including Department Head, Dean, Associate Dean of Research, Director of the Office of Research Services, President of the Industrial Research Institute and Research Leadership Chair, both at the University of Windsor and Ryerson University, Toronto, Canada.

Professor Northwood has taught, researched and facilitated joint research and educational programmes at 14 universities worldwide, including the UK, the USA, Australia, Taiwan, China, Singapore and Canada. He has published 700 papers in refereed international journals and conference proceedings, 9 chapters in books and has edited 9 books, on a wide range of topics, including materials and their applications, and engineering and technology education. Professor Northwood was recently recognised as being among the world’s top 100,000 - or top 2% of scientists - according to the database published by Stanford University. The database recognises the long-term career performance of scientists around the world, living or deceased, who are the most cited authors in their disciplines. It reflects six citation metrics, including total citations and number of citations to papers as single or first author between 1965 and 2019. The data was collected from the Scopus database of nearly 7 million authors out of which the top 100,000/2% were analysed.

He has been elected Fellow of six international professional societies in Australia, Canada, the UK and the USA; namely, Fellow of the Royal Society of Canada (FRSC); Fellow of the Institution of Engineers Australia (FIEAust); Fellow of the World Institute for Engineering and Technology Education (FWIETE); Fellow of the Institute of Materials, Minerals and Mining (FIMMM); Fellow of ASM International (FASM); and Fellow of Alpha Sigma Mu (FAΣM) (The International Professional Honor Society for Materials Science and Engineering, for the field of materials science and engineering). In 2018, he was elected as a Member of the EU Academy of Sciences (EUAS).

According to Professor Northwood, over the years, he has greatly benefited from his association with the UICEE and WIETE, the conferences and the people. Life-long friends and wonderful memories. With the UICEE, there were five series of conferences, all of which had their own character and highlights. Those were:

  1. UICEE Annual Conference on Engineering Education (Cairns, Australia 2003; Kingston, Jamaica 2005; Bangkok, Thailand 2007);
  2. Global Conferences on Engineering Education (Glasgow, Scotland 2002; Bangkok, Thailand 2004; Brooklyn, USA 2006);
  3. UICEE Baltic Region Seminar on Engineering Education and Technology Education (Szczecin, Poland 2006; Tallinn, Estonia 2007);
  4. Asia-Pacific Forum on Engineering and Technology Education (Changhua, Taiwan 2001; Bangkok, Thailand 2005);
  5. North East Asia International Conference on Engineering and Technology Education (Changhua, Taiwan 2003, 2005; Taichung, Taiwan 2008).

During this time, Ryerson University, Toronto, Canada, became a partner institution of the UICEE, and the Ryerson Centre for Engineering Education became a satellite centre of the UICEE.

Professor Northwood also noted that the formation of the WIETE opened up a new series of conferences, new friends and more memories. The conference series were:

  1. WIETE Annual Conference on Engineering and Technology Education (Cairns, Australia 2013; Athens, Greece 2016);
  2. Mediterranean Seminar on Engineering and Technology Education (MSETE) (Athens, Greece 2013, 2017).
  3. World Conference on Technology and Engineering Education (Kraków, Poland 2010, Bratislava, Slovakia 2015);
  4. Conference on Engineering and Architecture Design Education (EADE) (Bratislava, Slovakia 2018; Kraków, Poland 2019).

In his words: MSETE, in Athens, confirmed our love of the city and its hospitality. EADE exposed us to the world of architecture, its thinking and design philosophy.

Professor Northwood also offered the following highlights of his papers/presentations, coincidentally, according to him, they both were from 2003.

  1. 6th UICE Annual Conference on Engineering Education, Cairns, Australia, 10-14 February 2003, Problem-Based Learning (PBL): from the health sciences to engineering to value-added in the workplace, co-authored by M.D. Northwood, D.O. Northwood, and M.G. Northwood, written and presented with his daughter, Melissa, and his wife, Marilyn, was one of the Opening Addresses. It should be added at this point that two papers received the UICEE Best Paper Award - Diamond Award (1st grade) at this Conference, and the first went to M.D. Northwood, D.O. Northwood and M.G. Northwood for their Opening Address.,n1.pdf (p.4). An extended version of this paper was published in the Global Journal of Engineering Education, and remains, to today, the article that he is most proud of. According to Google Scholar, this article has been cited 67 times, so far.

  2. 1st North-East Asia International Conference on Engineering and Technology Education, Changhua, Taiwan, 11-13 November 2003, Development of emotional intelligence: its role in the education of engineers by D.O. Northwood.

Professor Northwood commented that Being invited to present one of the Opening Addresses at what was the first of this conference series, was a great honour. The hospitality was superb, particularly that shown by the students from National Changhua University of Education who acted as my Minders for the duration of my stay in Taiwan. I was indebted to Marc J. Riemer for my education in the subject area of Emotional Intelligence.

Over the years, Professor Northwood has received a number of awards from the UICEE/WIETE. These include:

  1. 2000 UICEE Silver Badge of Honour -,n1.pdf (p.2);
  2. 2008 UICEE Order for Excellence in Engineering Education -,n1.pdf (p2&3);
  3. 2011 Elected Honorary Member of WIETE;
  4. 2013 Elected Fellow of WIETE -

Professor Northwood’s message about his retirement concluded with the following passage: I would like to end with what was part of my Welcome Address: at the 5th Mediterranean Seminar on Engineering and Technology Education, Athens, 11-15 September 2017. Finally, I would like to acknowledge, Professor Zenon J. Pudlowski, without whom none of these meetings would have been possible. Beginning with UICEE, and continuing with WIETE, he has been a truly international supporter of all that is best in Engineering and Technology Education. This has not only been through the networking and conference series but also through the publication of two world-class journals, Global Journal of Engineering Education and World Transactions Engineering and Technology Education. In recent years, Zenon has been ably assisted in the running of WIETE by Dorota Pudlowski, Managing Director, WIETE.

Staff, members and associates of the WIETE wish Professor Northwood a long, healthy and happy retirement (enriched by involvement in some of WIETE activities!).