Philip Rubin

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Philip E. Rubin
Born 1949
Newark, New Jersey
Residence Fairfield, Connecticut
Nationality USA
Fields Psychology, Linguistics
Institutions Office of Science and Technology Policy, National Science Foundation, Haskins Laboratories, Yale University
Alma mater Brandeis University
University of Connecticut
Doctoral advisor Michael Turvey, Alvin Liberman, and Philip Lieberman
Known for Articulatory synthesis
Embodied cognition
Human subjects and public policy
Sinewave synthesis

Philip E. Rubin (born May 22, 1949, in Newark, New Jersey) is an American cognitive scientist, technologist, and science administrator. He is currently the Principal Assistant Director for Science at the Office of Science and Technology Policy (OSTP) in the Executive Office of the President of the United States,[1] and leads the White House's neuroscience initiative.[2] He is also serving as the Assistant Director for Social, Behavioral and Economic Sciences at OSTP.[3] From 2003 through 2011 he was the Chief Executive Officer and a Senior Scientist at Haskins Laboratories in New Haven, Connecticut, where he is currently on leave.[4] During this period he was also a Professor Adjunct in the Department of Surgery, Otolaryngology at the Yale University School of Medicine and a Research Affiliate in the Department of Psychology at Yale University. For many years he has been involved with issues of science advocacy, education, funding, and policy.


Philip Rubin received his BA in psychology and linguistics in 1971 from Brandeis University and subsequently attended the University of Connecticut where he received his PhD is experimental psychology in 1975 under the tutelage of Michael Turvey, Ignatius Mattingly, Philip Lieberman, and Alvin Liberman.


Philip Rubin's research spans a number of disciplines, combining computational, engineering, linguistic, physiological and psychological approaches to study embodied cognition, most particularly the biological bases of speech and language. He is best known for his work on articulatory synthesis (computational modeling of the physiology and acoustics of speech production), speech perception, sinewave synthesis, signal processing, perceptual organization, and theoretical approaches and modeling of complex temporal events, and continues active research collaborations with colleagues at Haskins, Yale, and other institutions.

During his time at Haskins Laboratories, Rubin was responsible for the design of many software systems. Most prominent are SWS,[5] the Haskins sinewave synthesis program and ASY,[6] the Haskins articulatory synthesis program. SWS has been used by Robert Remez, Rubin, David B. Pisoni,[7] and other colleagues and researchers to study the time-varying characteristics of the speech signal. In addition to use in standard articulatory synthesis, the ASY program has been used as part of a gestural-computational model [8] that combines articulatory phonology, task dynamics,[9] and articulatory synthesis. With Louis Goldstein and Mark Tiede,[10] Rubin designed a radical revision of the articulatory synthesis model, known as CASY,[11] the configurable articulatory synthesizer. This 3-dimensional model of the vocal tract permits researchers to replicate MRI images of actual speakers and has been used to study the relation between speech production and perception. He is also the designer of the HADES signal processing system and the SPIEL programming language.

He is co-creator, with Eric Vatikiotis-Bateson,[12] of the Talking Heads website[13] and a co-founder, with Elliot Saltzman, of the IS Group.[14]

Rubin was the founder, in 1984, and first president of YMUG (now known as YaleMUG, the Yale Macintosh Users Group)[15] and the publisher of The Desktop Journal. Other co-founders and early members include Tony Cecala,[16] Eric Celeste,[17] Richard Crane,[18] David Pogue, Michael D. Rabin,[19] Tom Rielly,[20] Elliot Schlessel, and Ed Seidel.

From 2000-2003 Rubin was the Director of the Division of Behavioral and Cognitive Sciences (BCS)[21] at the National Science Foundation (NSF) in Arlington, Virginia, where he helped launch the Cognitive Neuroscience,[22] Human Origins (HOMINID),[23] and other programs and was the first chair of the Human and Social Dynamics priority area.[24] While at the NSF he was the NSF ex officio representative to the National Human Research Protection Advisory Committee (NHRPAC)[25] and the Secretary's Advisory Committee on Human Research Protections (SACHRP),[26] established to provide advice to the Secretary of Health and Human Services on issues related to the protection of human research subjects. He was also the co-chair of the inter-agency National Science and Technology Council (NSTC) Committee on Science (COS) Human Subjects Research Subcommittee (HSRS) under the auspices of the President's Office of Science and Technology Policy (OSTP) and was also formerly the co-chair of the HSRS Behavioral Research Working Group. After leaving the NSF in 2003, he continued to be active on human subjects issues as they relate to public policy, including lecturing, writing, co-authoring an AAUP report,[27] participating in activities of the Yale Bioethics Center,[28] and serving on the advisory board of the Journal of Empirical Research on Human Research Ethics.[29]

Rubin has been in several leadership roles related to science policy and advocacy. From 2006-2011 he was the Chair of the National Academies Board on Behavioral, Cognitive, and Sensory Sciences;[30] the Chair of the National Research Council (NRC) Committee on Field Evaluation of Behavioral and Cognitive Sciences-Based Methods and Tools for Intelligence and Counter-Intelligence;[31] a member of the NRC Committee on Developing Metrics for Department of Homeland Security Science and Technology Research;[32] a member of the Executive Committee of the Federation of Associations in Behavioral and Brain Sciences;[33] and the co-leader ot the Yale-Haskins Teagle Foundation Collegium on Student Learning.[34] He is also the former Chairman of the Board of the Discovery Museum and Planetarium in Bridgeport, Connecticut.


In February 2012 Philip Rubin took a position as the Assistant Director for Social, Behavioral, and Economic Sciences at the Office of Science and Technology Policy (OSTP) in the Executive Office of the President of the United States.[35] He is also serving as a Senior Advisor at the National Science Foundation in the Social, Behavioral and Economic Sciences (SBE) Directorate.[36] At OSTP he is leading the White House's neuroscience initiative.[37] On April 16, 2012, Congressman Chakah Fattah (D-PA) introduced House Resolution 613, supporting the OSTP interagency working group on neuroscience that Rubin is organizing. The resolution also "... commends President Barack Obama for the expeditious appointment of Dr. Philip Rubin to lead the working group's efforts."[38] In June 2012 was named by John Holdren, Assistant to the President for Science and Technology and Director of OSTP, to be OSTP's Principal Assistant Director for Science, taking over the duties of Nobel laureate Carl Wieman, who resigned as Associate Director for Science on June 2.[39] In this new role Rubin has also become Co-Chair of the National Science and Technology Council's Committee on Science, serving with other Co-Chairs, Francis Collins and Subra Suresh, Directors of the NIH and NSF, respectively.[40]


Philip Rubin is a Fellow of the American Association for the Advancement of Science, the Acoustical Society of America, the American Psychological Association (APA), the Association for Psychological Science, and an elected member of the Psychonomic Society and Sigma Xi. In 2010 he received the APA’s Meritorious Research Service Commendation "... for his outstanding contributions to psychological science through his service as a leader in research management and policy development at the national level".[41]

Personal Life[edit]

Philip Rubin was born on May 22, 1949, in Newark, New Jersey. He spent most of his childhood in Newark and went to Union High School in Union, New Jersey. In the 1960s he was a guitar player in the seminal New Jersey garage band, "The Institution." Rubin is a photographer who, since the 1970s, has concentrated on pictures of wall art, including murals, graffiti, and painted buildings, in the urban centers of the cities that he has visited. Speaking of the transient nature of wall art, he has said, "The artist is often unknown; the passing of time and the public venues invite unanticipated collaboration.”[42] His work has been exhibited and sold at numerous venues.[43] [44] [45] He is married to Joette Katz, retired Associate Justice of the Connecticut Supreme Court and currently the Commissioner of the Connecticut Department of Children and Families.[46] They have two children, Dr. Jason Rubin, a pediatrician at Seattle Children's Hospital and the University of Washington School of Medicine in Seattle,[47][48] and Samantha Katz,[49] Art Director for Makovsky + Company in New York.[50]


  1. ^ "Fattah neuroscience initiative results in White House appointment | Government Health IT". 2012-03-02. Retrieved 2012-05-12. 
  2. ^ "Text of H.Res.613 as Introduced in House: Supporting the Office of Science and Technology Policy interagency... OpenCongress". Retrieved 2012-05-12. 
  3. ^ Peart, Karen N. (2012-03-06). "YaleNews | Yale scientist tapped to serve key roles at the White House and NSF". Retrieved 2012-05-12. 
  4. ^ "Haskins Laboratories". 2012-03-05. Retrieved 2012-05-12. 
  5. ^ "Haskins Laboratories". Retrieved 2012-05-12. 
  6. ^ "ASY". Retrieved 2012-05-12. 
  7. ^ "David B. Pisoni - Personal Page". Retrieved 2012-05-12. 
  8. ^ "Haskins Laboratories". Retrieved 2012-05-12. 
  9. ^ "TADA: An enhanced, portable Task Dynamics model in MATLAB". Retrieved 2012-05-12. 
  10. ^ "Mark Tiede". Retrieved 2012-05-12. 
  11. ^ "CASY". Retrieved 2012-05-12. 
  12. ^ "Communication Dynamics Labsite". Retrieved 2012-05-12. 
  13. ^ "Haskins Laboratories". Retrieved 2012-05-12. 
  14. ^ "IS Group". Retrieved 2012-05-12. 
  15. ^ "YaleMUG Homepage". Retrieved 2012-05-12. 
  16. ^ "embrace the future". Tony Cecala. 2011-10-21. Retrieved 2012-05-12. 
  17. ^ "Who is Eric Celeste?". Retrieved 2012-05-12. 
  18. ^ "Richard Crane". Retrieved 2012-05-12. 
  19. ^ "Michael D. Rabin". LinkedIn. Retrieved 2012-05-12. 
  20. ^ "Tom Rielly". Retrieved 2012-05-12. 
  21. ^ "Division of Behavioral and Cognitive Sciences (BCS) - US National Science Foundation (NSF)". Retrieved 2012-05-12. 
  22. ^ "Funding - Cognitive Neuroscience - US National Science Foundation (NSF)". Retrieved 2012-05-12. 
  23. ^ "Human Origins (HOMINID)". Retrieved 2012-05-12. 
  24. ^ "Funding - Human and Social Dynamics - US National Science Foundation (NSF)". Retrieved 2012-05-12. 
  25. ^ "Archive of the National Human Research Protections Advisory Committee". Retrieved 2012-05-12. 
  26. ^ "Secretary's Advisory Committee on Human Research Protections (SACHRP)". Retrieved 2012-05-12. 
  27. ^ "Research on Human Subjects: Academic Freedom and the Institutional Review Board (2006)". AAUP. Retrieved 2012-05-12. 
  28. ^ "Yale University's Interdisciplinary Center for Bioethics". Retrieved 2012-05-12. 
  29. ^ "JERHRE". Retrieved 2012-05-12. 
  30. ^ "BBCSS Home". Retrieved 2012-05-12. 
  31. ^ "Committee on Field Evaluation". Retrieved 2012-05-12. 
  32. ^ "Project: Developing Metrics for Department of Homeland Security Science and Technology Research: A Study (COMPLETED)". Retrieved 2012-05-12. 
  33. ^ "Federation of Associations in Brain and Behavioral Sciences". Retrieved 2012-05-12. 
  34. ^ "Teagle Collegium". Retrieved 2012-05-12. 
  35. ^ "Psychologist on detail to the White House meets with APA staff on science issues". apa-org. Retrieved 2012-05-13. 
  36. ^ "APS Observer | White House Appoints APS Fellow as Neuroscience Research Coordinator". Retrieved 2012-05-12. 
  37. ^ "Text of H.Res.613 as Introduced in House: Supporting the Office of Science and Technology Policy interagency... OpenCongress". Retrieved 2012-05-12. 
  38. ^ "Bill Text 112th Congress (2011-2012) H.RES.613.". Retrieved 2012-05-13. 
  39. ^ "Philip Rubin to take over Carl Wieman's OSTP role". AAAS. Retrieved 2012-08-07. 
  40. ^ "Philip Rubin Takes New Leadership Role at White House Office". Retrieved 2012-08-07. 
  41. ^ "APA Meritorious Research Service awards". Retrieved 2012-05-12. 
  42. ^ "Off The Wall Art". Retrieved 2012-05-13. 
  43. ^ "Site Projects". Retrieved 2012-05-13. 
  44. ^ "Photo Exhibit at Atticus Benefits Refugees". Retrieved 2012-05-13. 
  45. ^ "Connecticut Art Scence". Retrieved 2012-05-13. 
  46. ^ Green, Rick. "Malloy Taps Supremes' Joette Katz to Run DCF - Rick Green | CT Confidential". Retrieved 2012-05-12. 
  47. ^ "Zoe Schagrin and Jason Rubin wedding". Retrieved 2012-05-12. 
  48. ^ "UW Medicine Pediatric Residency Training Program". Retrieved 2012-08-07. 
  49. ^ "Samantha Katz, art director". Retrieved 2012-05-12. 
  50. ^ "Makovsky + Company, public relations". Retrieved 2012-05-12. 

Selected publications[edit]

  • Rubin, P., Turvey, M. T., & Van Gelder, P. (1976). Initial phonemes are detected faster in spoken words than in spoken nonwords. Perception and Psychophysics, 19, 394-398.
  • Fowler, C. A., Rubin, P. E., Remez, R. E., & Turvey, M. T. (1980). Implications for speech production of a general theory of action. In B. Butterworth (Ed.), Language Production, Vol. I: Speech and Talk (pp. 373-420). New York: Academic Press.
  • Rubin, P., Baer, T., & Mermelstein, P. (1981). An articulatory synthesizer for perceptual research. Journal of the Acoustical Society of America, 70, 321-328.
  • Remez, R. E., Rubin, P. E., Pisoni, D. B., & Carrell, T. D. (1981). Speech perception without traditional speech cues. Science, 212, 947-950.
  • Kelso, J. A. S., Holt, K. G., Rubin, P., & Kugler, P. N. (1981). Patterns of human interlimb coordination emerge from the properties of non-linear, limit-cycle oscillatory processes: theory and data. Journal of Motor Behavior, 13, 226-261.
  • Browman, C. P., Goldstein, L., Kelso, J. A. S., Rubin, P. E., & Saltzman, E. (1984). Articulatory synthesis from underlying dynamics. Journal of the Acoustical Society of America, 75, S22.
  • Saltzman, E., Rubin, P. E., Goldstein, L., & Browman, C. P. (1987). Task-dynamic modeling of interarticulator coordination. Journal of the Acoustical Society of America, 82, S15.
  • Remez, R. E. & Rubin, P. E. (1990). On the perception of speech from time-varying attributes: Contributions of amplitude variation. Perception & Psychophysics, 48, 313-325.
  • Remez, R.E., Rubin, P.E., Berns, S.M., Pardo, J.S. & Lang, J.M. (1994). On the perceptual organization of speech. Psychological Review, 101, 129-156.
  • Rubin, Philip E. (1995). HADES: A Case Study of the Development of a Signal System. In R. Bennett, S. L. Greenspan & A. Syrdal (Eds.), Behavioral Aspects of Speech Technology: Theory and Applications. CRC Press, Boca Raton, 501-520.
  • Rubin, P. & Vatikiotis-Bateson, E. (1998). Measuring and modeling speech production in humans. In S. L. Hopp & C. S. Evans (Eds.), Animal Acoustic Communication: Recent Technical Advances. Springer-Verlag, New York, 251-290.
  • Rubin, P., & Vatikiotis-Bateson, E. (1998). Talking heads. In D. Burnham, J. Robert-Ribes, & E. Vatikiotis-Bateson (Eds.), International Conference on Auditory-Visual Speech Processing - AVSP’98 (pp. 231-235). Terrigal, Australia.
  • Rubin, Philip. (2002). The regulatory environment for science: Protecting participants in research. In Albert H. Teich, Stephen D. Nelson, and Stephen J. Lita (eds.), AAAS Science and Technology Policy Yearbook 2002. American Association for the Advancement of Science, Washington, D.C., 199-206.
  • Sieber, Joan E., Plattner, Stuart, and Rubin, Philip. (2002). How (Not) to Regulate Social and Behavioral Research. Professional Ethics Report, Vol. XV, No. 2, Spr. 2002, 1-4.
  • Rubin, Philip. (2004). NSF reflections. American Psychological Society Observer, Vol. 17, No. 4, April 2004, 20-22.
  • Thomson, Judith Jarvis, Elgin, Catherine, Hyman, David A., Rubin, Philip E. and Knight, Jonathan. (2006). Report: Research on Human Subjects: Academic Freedom and the Institutional Review Board. Academe, Volume 92, Number 5, September-October 2006.
  • Goldstein, L. and Rubin, P. (2007). Speech: Dances of the Vocal Tract. Odyssey Magazine, Jan. 2007, 14-15.
  • Hogden, J., Rubin, P., McDermott, E., Katagiri, S., and Goldstein, L. (2007). Inverting mappings from smooth paths through Rn to paths throughs Rm. A technique applied to recovering articulation from acoustics. Speech Communication, May 2007, Volume 49, Issue 5, 361-383.
  • Gordon, Judith B., Levine, Robert J., Mazure, Carolyn M., Rubin, Philip E., Schaller, Barry R., and Young, John L. (2011). Social Contexts Influence Ethical Considerations of Research. The American Journal of Bioethics, 11:5, 24-30.
  • Rubin, P. (2011). “Cognitive Science.” In: William Sims Bainbridge (ed.). Leadership in Science and Technology: A Reference Handbook. SAGE Publications: 2011.

External links[edit]