Matthew Robertson

Assistant Professor

Amy Wu headshot

McLaughlin Hall, Room TBD

Kingston, ON K7L3N6


Phone: 613 533 6000 x TBD

Research Interests

  • Bioinspired robotics
  • Soft robotics 
  • Mechatronics
  • Actuators
  • Wearable technology


Dr. Matthew Robertson is active in the fields of bioinspired, soft, and multi-material robotic systems design. His work is dedicated to redefining the boundaries of performance, morphology, and applications of robots that can operate in more complex and challenging “real world” environments by utilizing advanced manufacturing, embedded control, and holistic system design techniques. His general interest is in engineering things that have never been seen, or that were never possible before following an approach that is part discovery and part creativity.

His past work has involved the use of novel and smart materials - silicone polymers, fiber-reinforced composites, shape memory alloys - as well as diverse and unique fabrication methods - laser micromachining, layer-manufacturing, heat bonding, casting - to develop and study novel robotic platforms. He has published work in several high impact scientific journals including Science Robotics, Soft Robotics, and the International Journal of Robotics Research and has presented at a number of international robotics conferences.  

Dr. Robertson received his PhD from the École Polytechnique Fédérale de Lausanne in Switzerland in the area of robotics in 2019, following a Master’s degree from the University of Michigan in 2011, and Bachelor’s degree from the Massachusetts Institute of Technology in Mechanical Engineering in 2009. Between his Master’s and PhD degrees, Matthew worked for over four years in industry as a research engineer on the design and fabrication of functional prototype robotic prostheses and mechanisms. After completing his PhD, Matthew joined Queen’s University as a postdoctoral researcher funded by the Swiss National Science Foundation Postdoc.Mobility fellowship before joining the faculty in the Mechanical and Materials Engineering department in 2020.


Master's and PhD positions now available.

Select Publications

M. Robertson, O. Can Kara, J. Paik. Soft pneumatic actuator-driven origami-inspired modular robotic “pneumagami”. The International Journal of Robotics Research. doi:10.1177/0278364920909905. 18 Mar 2020

M. Robertson, M. Murakami, W. Felt, J. Paik. A Compact Modular Soft Surface With Reconfigurable Shape and Stiffness. IEEE/ASME Transactions on Mechatronics. Vol. 24, Issue 1, pgs. 16-24. 29 Oct 2018.

M. Robertson, J. Paik. New soft robots really suck: Vacuum-powered systems empower diverse capabilities. Science Robotics. Vol. 2, Issue 9, eaan6357. 30 Aug 2017.