Skip to content


Hanspeter Pfister

  • Education

    Doctor of Philosophy, State University of New York at Stony Brook

Hanspeter Pfister

Hanspeter Pfister is the An Wang Professor of Computer Science at Harvard John A. Paulson School of Engineering and Applied Sciences and an affiliate faculty member of the Center for Brain Science. His research in visual computing lies at the intersection of visualization, computer graphics, and computer vision and spans a wide range of topics, including biomedical image analysis and visualization, image and video analysis, and visual analytics in data science. Pfister also offers his semester-long courses online at Harvard Extension School, where he won the Petra T. Shattuck Excellence in Teaching Award in 2009.

Pfister has a PhD in computer science from the State University of New York at Stony Brook and an MS in electrical engineering from ETH Zurich, Switzerland. From 2013 to 2017 he was director of the Institute for Applied Computational Science. Before joining Harvard, he worked for over a decade at Mitsubishi Electric Research Laboratories, where he was associate director and senior research scientist. He was the chief architect of VolumePro, Mitsubishi Electric’s award-winning real-time volume rendering graphics card, for which he received the Mitsubishi Electric President’s Award in 2000.

Pfister is the recipient of the 2010 IEEE Visualization Technical Achievement Award, the 2009 IEEE Meritorious Service Award, and the 2009 Petra T. Shattuck Excellence in Teaching Award. Pfister was elected as chair and is currently a director of the IEEE Visualization and Graphics Technical Committee.

Programs Hanspeter Teaches

Data Visualization: Communicating Data and Complex Ideas Visually