Psychology prof Frank Russo named inaugural Massey Fellow
May 09, 2012
The inaugural Ryerson Fellow at Massey College is psychology professor Frank Russo, an award-winning researcher.
Russo will serve as Fellow for the 2012-13 year. In 2006, he founded the Science of Music, Auditory Research, and Technology (SMART) lab at Ryerson, an interdisciplinary research team that combines behavioural, electrophysiological and computational methods to address questions at the intersection of music, mind and technology. He serves on the board of directors of the Canadian Acoustical Association and the Society for Music Perception and Cognition, and as an adjunct scientist at the Toronto Rehabilitation Institute.
“Frank Russo is an outstanding choice as Ryerson’s first Massey Fellow. His innovative, cutting edge research and incredibly impressive track record of accomplishments will make Frank a welcome addition to the College and a wonderful inaugural Ryerson Massey Fellow,” said Alan Shepard, provost and vice president academic at Ryerson.
The Massey Fellowship is the result of a new partnership between Ryerson and Massey College, and will continue with the appointment of one Fellow every year. This year there were 11 outstanding applicants for the fellowship from among Ryerson faculty.
Russo will be provided with an office at Massey College at the University of Toronto, and will be invited to take part in the intellectual and social activities of the college while he is on research leave from Ryerson.
Russo has earned significant recognition for this research. In April he was given the Early Career Award by the Canadian Society for Brain, Behaviour and Cognitive Science. The award recognizes the exceptional quality and importance of the contributions of a new researcher (within 10 years of receiving their PhD) to knowledge in brain, behaviour, and cognitive science in Canada.
In 2010 Russo was presented with the Most Ingenious Canadian Invention Award by the Mark News as the co-inventor of the Emoti-chair, a sensory-substitution technology designed to provide greater access to music for deaf and hard of hearing individuals.
Russo also was presented with a Ryerson Scholarly, Research and Creative Activity Award in 2011, and with an Early Researcher Award from the Ontario Ministry of Research and Innovation.
Russo earned his doctorate in Psychology from Queen’s University and completed a post-doctoral fellowship in Music Cognition and Hearing Science.
“The fellowship at Massey College will allow me the opportunity to work in a new location alongside scholars from different disciplines, providing a fertile context for the generation of new theoretical insights,” said Russo. “In particular, I am hopeful that the fellowship will allow me to refine an emerging theory of vocal-emotional communication that draws from our latest findings in the lab.”
Russo has published more than 30 peer-reviewed articles, presented more than 100 conference papers, and has been a keynote speaker on a variety of topics including vocal-emotional communication, music and hearing loss, cognitively based music information retrieval and the role of movement in emotional response to music.