H. K. Kesavan

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Hiremagalur Krishnaswamy Kesavan
Born (1926-06-14)June 14, 1926
Bangalore, Karnataka, India
Died November 26, 2014(2014-11-26) (aged 88)
Waterloo, Ontario, Canada
Alma mater University Visvesvaraya College of Engineering
University of Illinois, Urbana-Champaign
Michigan State University
Known for Electrical engineering, Systems theory, Linear graph theory, Entropy optimization
Scientific career
Fields Electrical Engineering
Systems Theory
Information Theory
Institutions Indian Institute of Technology, Kanpur
University of Waterloo
Doctoral advisor Herman E. Koenig
Doctoral students Numerous

Hiremagalur Krishnaswamy Kesavan, known as H.K. Kesavan, (June 14, 1926 – November 26, 2014) was Distinguished Professor Emeritus in the Faculty of Engineering at the University of Waterloo, Ontario, Canada.

Early life and education[edit]

H.K. Kesavan was born on June 14, 1926 in Bangalore, India.[1] He received his undergraduate degrees in science and engineering from the Central College and the Government Engineering College (now called University Visvesvaraya College of Engineering) in Bangalore. He received his M.S. degree from the University of Illinois in 1956 and his Ph.D. from Michigan State University in 1959, both in Electrical Engineering. He was an instructor at Michigan State from 1956-1959, and assistant professor in 1959-1960.[1]


Early Career, 1960-63[edit]

In 1960, he was appointed as associate professor at the University of Waterloo,[1] eventually serving as chairman of the Electrical Engineering department. During this time, he also spent a year back at Michigan State where he finished co-authoring his first book, Analysis of Discrete Physical Systems, co-authored with Herman Koenig and Yilmaz Tokad and published several years later.[2]

IIT Kanpur, 1964-68[edit]

For a period of five years, he returned to India to serve as the first chairman of Electrical Engineering at the Indian Institute of Technology Kanpur and concurrently as head of its nationally significant Computer Centre. He was also the first Dean of Research and Development at the IIT.[3]

Waterloo, 1968-91[edit]

He returned to Waterloo to serve as the founding chairman of the Department of Systems Design engineering. He has published numerous technical papers and books on systems theory, applications of linear graph theory and entropy optimization principles.

Science and Philosophy[edit]

Kesavan maintained a lifelong interest in the philosophical aspects of science. His book, Science and Spirituality presents a global view of Vedic philosophy from the insights that science and spirituality provide.

External links[edit]


  1. ^ a b c IRE Transactions on Education, Vol. 4, Issue 3, pub. Sept. 1961, p. 128 (visited November 26, 2014)
  2. ^ Analysis of Discrete Physical Systems, H. E. Koenig, H. K. Kesavan, and Y. Tokad, McGraw-Hill (1967)
  3. ^ See generally An Eye for Excellence: Fifty Innovative Years of IIT Kanpur by E. C. Subbarao, HarperCollins (2008). A picture of Prof. Kesavan giving a tour of the Computer Centre to Indian Prime Minister Indira Gandhi on September 17, 1966 appears on p. 276.