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Kahn, Alan R.

Kahn, Alan R.

Alan R. Kahn received the MD degree from the University of Illinois in 1959. After graduate training in physics at the University of Chicago, he began inventing and developing clinical biomedical products, before there were any formal bioengineering programs. He was instrumental in the development of medical monitoring systems for the early aerospace program and provided weightlessness training for the original team of astronauts. He was a founder and President of the Alliance for Engineering in Medicine and Biology, Founding Member of the American Institute of Biological and Medical Engineering, and has held top technical management positions in biomedical companies including Medtronic, Beckman Instruments, and Hoffman-La Roche. He is a Fellow of the American College of Cardiology, Fellow of the American College of Chest Physicians, and a Life Fellow of the Institute of Electrical and Electronic Engineers. His academic activities have included Professorial appointments in Anesthesiology at the U. of Illinois, in Electrical and Computer Engineering at the U. of Cincinnati, in Communication Sciences at the U. of Cincinnati, in Anesthesiology at the U. of Minnesota, in Neurosurgery at the U. of Wisconsin, and in Laboratory Medicine and Pathology at the U. of Minnesota. He holds 21 patents and has published 102 scientific papers. Dr. Kahn still continues with his habit of inventing, patenting, and publishing.

In the 1980s, Dr. Kahn turned his attention to studies on the types of information processing in the brains of different kinds of people. His background in Computer Engineering provided tools to study the ways the brain processes information, and his experience in Neurosurgery and Anesthesiology made it possible for him to relate the information processing to brain anatomy and physiology. He founded Human Dimensions, Inc. in order to provide a venue for research and applications projects. Since that time, Human Dimensions Inc. has conducted more than one thousand in-depth studies on human subjects; analyzed student classes at two medical schools; worked with the marketing departments of corporations; and for the past fifteen years, provided graduate courses at the U. of Cincinnati and the U. of Minnesota concerning the material presented in Mind Shapes. One of Dr. Kahn’s students, Kris Radcliffe, became keenly interested in this material, began contributing significantly to the ideas, and co-authored Mind Shapes. Together they perfected the Human Dimensions Model to clearly and cleanly present to the reader the underlying reasons for why humans think the way we do.


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