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Gerald Harris, Ph.D., PE

Gerald Harris, Ph.D., PE

Gerald F. Harris, Ph.D., PE, is director of the motion analysis center at Shriners Hospitals for Children — Chicago. Dr. Harris is an established researcher, advisor and educator. He is also a professor of biomedical engineering at Marquette University, and a professor and director of research at the Medical College of Wisconsin Department of Orthopaedic Surgery. In a unique collaboration with these institutions, Harris is director of the Orthopaedic and Rehabilitation Engineering Center of Marquette University/Medical College of Wisconsin, overseeing multi-institutional orthopaedic and rehabilitation engineering research.

At Shriners Hospitals for Children — Chicago, Harris, a biomedical engineer for more than 30 years, leads a team of therapists, kinesiologists and engineers to provide gait analysis of children with a variety of orthopaedic conditions and disabilities such as cerebral palsy, clubfoot and spinal cord injuries. More than 300 children are evaluated for orthopaedic surgery in the Center each year.

His research interests include orthopaedic biomechanics, human motion analysis and rehabilitation engineering. Among his work, Harris directed studies to develop, validate and apply a segmental foot and ankle motion analysis model (Milwaukee Foot Model) that is radiographically indexed to the underlying bony anatomy. He has also developed a biplanar (3D) fluoroscopy system for the analysis of segmental foot motion during gait.

Harris is also part of our hospital research team with the Brittle Bone Disorders Consortium of the Rare Disease Clinical Research Network through the National Institutes of Health. He is co-principal investigator for our linked clinical research center work with the Osteogenesis Imperfecta Foundation.

He provides his expertise as an advisor to numerous national and international educational and disability groups. Among his current roles, the Children's Orthopedics in Underserved Regions committee of the Pediatric Orthopaedic Society of North America, the Rehabilitation Engineering and Assistive Technology Society of North America (RESNA) standards committee on wheelchairs and transportation. Dr. Harris is also a past president of the North American Society of Gait and Clinical Motion Analysis.

Harris is recognized for his commitment and work in the field of rehabilitation technology. He was named a Life Fellow in 2014 by the IEEE/EMBS for contributions to clinical research and education, and earned the Outstanding Researcher Award from the Opus College of Engineering at Marquette University.

Dr. Harris is a graduate of the United States Naval Academy and achieved the rank of captain in the U.S. Marine Corps.

Listen to a podcast with Dr. Harris:



  • BS, Mechanical Engineering, U.S. Naval Academy, Annapolis, Md.
  • MA, Human Resources Mgt., Pepperdine University, Los Angeles Calif.
  • MS, Biomedical Engineering, Marquette University, Milwaukee, Wisc.
  • Ph.D., Biomedical Engineering, Marquette University, Milwaukee, Wisc.