Dr. Alex Mihailidis profile photo

Dr. Alex Mihailidis

Associate Professor

Toronto, ON, CANADA

Dr Mihailidis has been conducting research in the field of pervasive computing and intelligent systems in health for the past 15 years,




Image for publication on Pervasive Computing in HealthcareImage for publication on Assistive Technology: From Research to Practice - AAATE 2013 (Assistive Technology Research)



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Alex Mihailidis, Ph.D., P.Eng., is the Barbara G. Stymiest Research Chair in Rehabilitation Technology at the University of Toronto (U of T) and Toronto Rehabilitation Institute. He is also the Graduate Coordinator for the Clinical Engineering Program. He is an Associate Professor in the Department of Occupational Science and Occupational Therapy (U of T) and in the Institute of Biomaterials and Biomedical Engineering (U of T), with a cross appointment in the Department of Computer Science (U of T).

He has been conducting research in the field of pervasive computing and intelligent systems in health for the past 15 years, having published over 150 journal papers, conference papers, and abstracts in this field. He has specifically focused on the development of intelligent home systems for elder care and wellness, technology for children with autism, and adaptive tools for nurses and clinical applications.

Dr Mihailidis currently holds several major research grants from internationally recognized funding agencies to support this work (including Canadian and American Alzheimer Associations, NSERC, and CIHR). He is also a CIHR New Investigator. His research has been completed through collaborations with other researchers in this field from Canada, the United Kingdom, and the United States, and with various industrial partners.

Dr Mihailidis has also co-edited two books: one from CRC Press entitled “Pervasive Computing in Healthcare”, and the other from IOS Press entitled “Technology and Aging”, which resulted in him being the conference chair for the 2nd International Conference on Technology and Aging. Dr Mihailidis is also very active in the rehabilitation engineering profession, currently as the President for RESNA (Rehabilitation Engineering and Assistive Technology Society of North America).

Areas of Expertise

Applied TechnologiesIntellegent SystemsPervasive ComputingRe-enablementRehabilitation EngineeringTechnology and Ageing


Strathclyde University

Ph.D., Bioengineering


University of Toronto

M.A.Sc., Biomedical Engineering


University of Toronto

B.A.Sc., Mechanical Engineering



  • Rehabilitation Engineering and Assistive Technology Society of North America (RESNA) : Member
  • Association for Computing Machinery (ACM) : Member
  • University of Alberta : Adjunct Associate Professor Faculty of Rehabilitation Sciences
  • Glenrose Rehabilitation Hospital : Affiliate Research Scientist
  • Sunnybrook Health Sciences Centre : Associate Scientist Clinical Integrative Biology Unit (CIB)
  • Simon Fraser University Gerontology Program : Adjunct Professor

Media Appearances

Disrupting Alzheimer's And Us

The Huffington Post  online


This panel tried to teach the pain-points of Alzheimer's to the tech audience so they could understand the problems that need solving. The panel collected an impressive group of thought leaders, with Dr. Jeff Cummings from the Cleveland Clinic, Professor Alex Mihailidis from the University of Toronto, and Terry Bradwell from AARP. It was also moderated by Andrew Wright from Otsuka Pharmaceuticals, who oversees their Digital Medicines...

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Dementia patients may one day get assistance from robot helpers

CBC News  online


The research team intends to make these systems available at a reasonable cost according to its director Dr. Alex Mihailidis. "Everything that we try to build around here, we try to keep not in the thousands of dollars but in the hundreds of dollars at most," Mihailidis said last year on an episode of CBC Radio’s Spark...

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AGE-WELL launches research programs on healthy aging technologies

Simon Fraser University  online


Sixsmith is co-leading AGE-WELL with Alex Mihailidis, the Barbara G. Stymiest Chair in Rehabilitation Technology at the Toronto Rehabilitation Institute University Health Network (TRI-UHN) and the University of Toronto...

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Great advances being made in assistive technology

Our Windsor  online


“This field, from when I started 15 years ago until now, has really seen an attraction of younger people wanting to get involved,” says Alex Mihailidis, a University of Toronto professor who holds a chair in rehabilitation technology. “People are seeing this as a challenging and exciting application.” Yet these researchers are often confronted with hurdles that designers of mainstream tech — whether silly or genuinely useful — are not: regulatory barriers, marketplace fragmentation, and even our own unconscious biases...

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Government announces $36.6M for SFU co-led AGE-WELL network

Simon Fraser University  online


Sixsmith has more than 20 years of research experience involving the health and quality of life of older people and the development of research in technology and aging. He and Mihailidis co-lead the Canadian Consortium on Neurodegeneration in Aging and both are involved in several international initiatives that will coordinate with AGE-WELL. Sixsmith will focus on developing AGE-WELL’s innovation ecosystem...

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Event Appearances

Discriminating Older Adults with Mild Cognitive Impairment Using Machine Learning Algorithms

ACM International Joint Conference on Pervasive and Ubiquitous Computing (UbiComp 2013)  Zurich, Switzerland


Collaboratively Controlled Intelligent Robotic Wheelchairs: Capabilities and User Interfaces (Workshop)

RESNA 2013 Annual Conference  Bellevue, WA.


Developing advanced assistive technologies for older adults with dementia: Lessons learned

RESNA 2013 Annual Conference  Bellevue, WA.


Intelligent wheelchairs for cognitivelyimpaired older adults in Long-term care: A review

RESNA 2013 Annual Conference  Bellevue, WA.


Investigation of EMG fatigue patterns while using an upper limb rehabilitation robotic device

RESNA 2013 Annual Conference  Bellevue, WA.


Featured Articles

A survey on ambient-assisted living tools for older adults | Biomedical and Health Informatics


In recent years, we have witnessed a rapid surge in assisted living technologies due to a rapidly aging society. The aging population, the increasing cost of formal health care, the caregiver burden, and the importance that the individuals place on living independently, all motivate development of innovative assisted living technologies for safe and independent aging. In this survey, we will summarize the emergence of “Ambient Assisted Living”(AAL) tools for older adults based on ambient intelligence paradigm. We ...

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A decision-theoretic approach to task assistance for persons with dementia | IJCAI


Cognitive assistive technologies that aid people with dementia (such as Alzheimer's disease) hold the promise to provide such people with an increased level of independence. However, to realize this promise, such systems must account for the specific needs and preferences of individuals. We argue that this form of customization requires a sequential, decision-theoretic model of interaction. We describe both fully and partially observable Markov decision process (POMDP) models of a handwashing task, and show that, despite ...

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An intelligent emergency response system: preliminary development and testing of automated fall detection | Journal of Telemedicine


We have designed an intelligent emergency response system to detect falls in the home. It uses image-based sensors. A pilot study was conducted using 21 subjects to evaluate the efficacy and performance of the fall-detection component of the system. Trials were conducted in a mock-up bedroom setting, with a bed, a chair and other typical bedroom furnishings. A small digital videocamera was installed in the ceiling at a height of approximately 2.6 m. The digital camera covered an area of approximately 5.0 m× 3.8 m. ...

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Assistive technology for cognitive rehabilitation: State of the art | Neuropsychological Rehabilitation


For close to 20 years, clinicians and researchers have been developing and assessing technological interventions for individuals with either acquired impairments or developmental disorders. This paper offers a comprehensive review of literature in that field, which we refer to collectively as assistive technology for cognition (ATC). ATC interventions address a range of functional activities requiring cognitive slulls as diverse as complex attention, executive reasoning, prospective memory, self-monitoring for either the ...

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The use of computer vision in an intelligent environment to support aging-in-place, safety, and independence in the home | Information Technology in Biomedicine


This paper discusses the use of computer vision in pervasive healthcare systems, specifically in the design of a sensing agent for an intelligent environment that assists older adults with dementia during an activity of daily living. An overview of the techniques applied in this particular example is provided, along with results from preliminary trials completed using the new sensing agent. A discussion of the results obtained to date is presented, including technical and social issues that remain for the advancement and acceptance of ...

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