Petrović Ivan, F.C.A.
Date of birth:
Place of birth:
- Klobuk, Ljubuški, Bosnia and Herzegovina
- Faculty of Electrical Engineering and Computing, University of Zagreb, Unska 3, 10000 Zagreb
- Faculty of Electrical Engineering and Computing: +385 01 6129 844
- Department of Technical Sciences: +385 01 4895 170
Petrović Ivan, F.C.A.
- full professor, head of – Laboratory for Autonomous Systems and Mobile Robotics, Faculty of Electrical Engineering and Computing, University of Zagreb
Functions in Academy:
- head of Scientific Council for Traffic (4/26/2023 – …)
- member of Awards Committee (7/6/2022 – …)
Membership in Academy:
- full member – Department of Technical Sciences (5/19/2022 – …)
Ivan Petrović is a full professor and head of the Laboratory for Autonomous Systems and Mobile Robotics (LAMOR) at the Faculty of Electrical Engineering and Computing, University of Zagreb (FER). He was born on January 18, 1961 in Klobuk, Ljubuški Municipality, Bosnia and Herzegovina. He is married and a father of two adult children. After finishing primary school in Klobuk (1975) and high school in Ljubuški (1979), he enrolled at FER where he graduated with honors (1983) and later received his master’s degree (1989) and PhD (1998). For his master’s thesis he received the federal award Prof. Dr. V. Bedjanič (Ljubljana, 1990), and for the doctoral dissertation Silver Plaque Josip Lončar (FER Zagreb, 1998).
After graduating in 1983, he was briefly employed in the company Končar – Electrical Equipment (1983 – 1985, with a one-year break due to military service), then from 1985 to 1994 he worked at Končar – Electrical Engineering Institute (KEEI), for the first five years as a research and development engineer, and then as the head of the unit for microprocessor control systems and automation of industrial plants. Since 1994 he has been employed in the Department of Control and Computer Engineering of FER, first as an assistant (1994 –2000), and then as an assistant professor (2000 – 2005), associate professor (2005 – 2009), full professor (2009 – 2015) and a full professor with tenure (from 2015). At FER, he was a member or chair of a number of committees, and from October 1, 2008 to September 30, 2012, he was the head of the Department of Control and Computer Engineering. Since October 2017 he has been employed in additional employment at the Innovation Centre Nikola Tesla (ICENT) as the head of the Institute of Robotics. As a visiting scientist, he spent several short periods at foreign universities, and for the period 2021 – 2024 he was elected to the academic position of title professor at the University of Toronto.
In his almost 40 years of scientific work, Ivan Petrović has dealt with a wide range of problems related to the research and development of automatic control theory and its application in the control of complex technical systems with significant personal impact on the development of this area in the Republic of Croatia and an internationally recognizable contribution. He has published his scientific achievements as an author or co-author in more than 300 scientific papers. His scientific work can be roughly divided into two periods. The first period refers to his 10-year work at Končar – Electrical Engineering Institute (1985 to 1994) where his scientific interest was predominantly focused on research and development of microprocessor control systems for industrial plants and electrical machinery, with a particularly prominent scientific contribution in the development of new positioning algorithms with a moving target and optimization algorithms that increase the accuracy and efficiency of industrial plants. The second period refers to his work at FER (from 1994 until today) where for the first ten years the focus of his scientific work was the control of complex electromechanical systems, and then, for the last twenty years, his scientific interest focused on autonomous robots and vehicles control. In the field of control of complex electromechanical systems, he achieved particularly outstanding results in the research of intelligent control methods, predictive control, and control based on sliding modes, and in the field of autonomous robots and vehicles control in research and application of (i) optimal stochastic estimators for pose tracking of mobile robots and vehicles, multi-sensor fusion and tracking of moving objects and people in the vicinity of mobile robots and vehicles, (ii) graph theory and computational geometry in trajectory planning of mobile robots and vehicles, (iii) automatic control theory for planned trajectory tracking while avoiding collisions respecting kinematic and dynamic robot constraints, (iv) deep neural networks in scene interpretation and modeling, and (v) stochastic inference algorithms for robot-human interaction.
A turning point in Ivan Petrović’s scientific work occurred in 2000, when he was elected assistant professor. He then launched his own research program aimed at developing autonomous control systems for mobile robots and vehicles. In 2002, at the Call of the Ministry of Science and Education (MSE), his scientific project Intelligent Control of Mobile Robots (2002 – 2007) was accepted, which established the first research team for mobile robot control in Croatia. Since then, he has been continuously working on raising the scientific level and strengthening his research laboratory, and he is also working on the integration of research capacities of related research laboratories at FER and other Croatian scientific institutions. He achieved the first noteworthy results in these activities as the head of the scientific program of the MSE Intelligent Robotic Systems and Autonomous Vehicles (2007 – 2013), which included five related scientific projects with more than 30 researchers in scientific disciplines and about 15 newly hired research novices. It was the first organized team in the Republic of Croatia to systematically conduct research in the field of intelligent robotic systems and autonomous vehicles. He gave the next big impetus to strengthen the scientific research capacity and scientific excellence of FER as the initiator and coordinator of the EU FP7 project ACROSS – Center of Research Excellence for Advanced Cooperative Systems (2011 – 2015; then the largest EU project in Croatia with a budget of €3.35 million for FER). Furthermore, as co-director of the Centre of Research Excellence for Data Science and Cooperative Systems (2015 – 2025), and head of its research unit Advanced Cooperative Systems, he contributes to raising the scientific level and strengthening research capacities throughout Croatia. Finally, he launched and has been coordinating the 6-year H2020 project AIFORS – ERA Chair in Artificial Intelligence for Robotics (2021 – 2026), with a budget of €2.5 million, which further strengthens the international competitiveness of his laboratory. So far, Ivan Petrović has participated in 75 research projects, 46 as a leader (19 international and 27 domestic) and 29 as a researcher (8 international and 21 domestic). As many as 13 projects have been funded by the European Union’s research framework programs and 7 projects by the European Regional Development Fund. In the last 10 years, an average of 30-35 doctoral and postdoctoral students have been employed on his projects.
He initiated and taught many courses at undergraduate, graduate, and doctoral studies of FER, in the field of automatic control, estimation theory and robotics, and equipped the relevant teaching laboratories. He has supervised more than 180 bachelor’s and diploma theses, 2 master’s theses and 19 doctoral dissertations. As a visiting professor he taught at the Faculty of Electrical Engineering, Mechanical Engineering and Naval Architecture in Split, Faculty of Electrical Engineering, Computer Science and Information Technology in Osijek, Faculty of Engineering in Rijeka, Faculty of Mechanical Engineering, Computing and Electrical Engineering in Mostar, Faculty of Chemical Engineering and Technology and Faculty of Food Technology and Biotechnology of the University of Zagreb.
Ivan Petrović actively contributes to the development of the economy and society in the Republic of Croatia in several ways. For the first 10 years after graduation, he worked at KEEI on research and development of new products, and coming to FER he continued to work intensively with the Croatian industry through contracted scientific and professional projects to apply the results of his research to new products – so far, his results have been applied in 10 high-tech industrial products. Furthermore, as many as 13 PhDs, whom he supervised, work in the Croatian economy, holding leading research and development or managerial positions, and some are co-founders of successful new companies. Also, as the director of the Institute of Robotics and co-founder of the Croatian Robotics Digital Innovation Hub (CROBOHUB) at the Innovation Centre Nikola Tesla, he and his associates work to encourage the use of robots and artificial intelligence in production automation in small and medium enterprises. He is also active in lifelong learning – he is the co-founder of the postgraduate specialist study Railway Electrical Systems for students from industry and in collaboration with Siemens d.d. has been conducting lifelong education of professional staff in the field of industrial automation for 25 years. Finally, he is active in the promotion of science and technology – he has participated as an organizer or lecturer in a large number of thematic conferences for professionals and the general public and a large number of his public appearances and media coverage of his work have been recorded.
He is an active member of several international scientific societies, the most important being the IEEE –Institute of Electrical and Electronics Engineers (for two terms he was the Chair of the Croatian IEEE Computational Intelligence Chapter) and IFAC – International Federation of Automatic Control (Chair of the Technical Committee for Robotics since 2017). Furthermore, he actively participates in the organization of international scientific conferences (member of the program committee of more than 50 and chair or co-chair of 16 international conferences, of which 7 were organized in the Republic of Croatia) and held many invited lectures at conferences and prestigious institutions abroad. He is also the Editor-in-Chief of the international journal Automatika and an Associate Editor of the international journal Mechatronics.
He is also active in scientific and professional societies in the Republic of Croatia. He is a full member of the Croatian Academy of Engineering in the Department of Systems and Cybernetics, where he was a member of the Scientific Council and the Ethics Committee, a member of the Board of the Croatian Society for Communications, Computing, Electronics, Measurements and Automation – KoREMA, a member of the Croatian Society for Information, Communication and Electronic Technology – MIPRO, where he co-chaired the Computers in Technical Systems Conference for four years. Furthermore, he is a member of the Croatian Robotics Society, in which he served as vice president and president, and the Croatian Association of Technical Culture, in which he was also a member of the assembly. Since 2017, he has been a member of the Scientific Council for Technological Development of the Croatian Academy of Sciences and Arts. For many years he has also been actively involved in committees, commissions and working groups of the Ministry of Science and Education and the National Council for Science, Higher Education and Technological Development.
So far, he has received 18 awards and recognitions for outstanding results in scientific and professional work, among which are the Rikard Podhorsky Award of the Croatian Academy of Technical Sciences (2008), the National Science Award of the Republic of Croatia (2011), the Golden Plaque Josip Lončar (2013) and Science Award (2015) from FER, Science Award of the Croatian Academy of Science and Arts (2017), Nikola Tesla Award of the IEEE Croatia Section (2019), Fran Bošnjaković Award from the University of Zagreb (2021) and Award of the City of Zagreb (2022).
Ivan Petrović – Croatian Scientific Bibliography CROSBI
Ivan Petrović – WoS Researcher ID
Ivan Petrović on Google Scholar