Dr. Warfield poses at his desk in his office at the Battelle Memorial Institute. The date is most likely 1969 or 1970. John N. Warfield papers (Collection #C0016 ), Box 102.

Dr. John Nelson Warfield (1925 – 2009) was a faculty member at George Mason University from 1984 until his retirement in 2000. Beginning as Director of Mason’s Institute for Information Technology, he ended his tenure as Director of the Institute for Advanced Study in the Integrative Sciences (IASIS), a part of George Mason’s Institute of Public Policy, now known as the School of Public Policy.

During a sixty-year career, Warfield served as a World War II Army scientist, a pioneer in the field of computers, a holder of multiple patents for electronic devices, and a founder of Systems Science, an interdisciplinary field which studies complex systems in nature, human interaction, and science. Dr. Warfield’s work impacted the academic world, the defense industry, government, and the private sector.

The exhibit gives an inside look at Dr. Warfield’s life and career using items in the John N. Warfield Papers, 1931-2009 held in the University Libraries Special Collections & Archives (SC&A). Special Collections and Archives is located in Fenwick Library, Room C-204.  Additionally, items in the Warfield Papers can be accessed electronically from the following two portals:

Attacking Complex Problems: The Life and Work of Dr. John N. Warfield

 The John N. Warfield Digital Collection

The exhibit contains materials which pertain to Dr. Warfield’s life and long career and date from 1931 to about 1990. The display contains a variety of objects, such as correspondence, photographs, drawings, and audio visual materials. The exhibit can be viewed on the 2nd Floor, Wing A of Fenwick Library on the Fairfax Campus of George Mason University. For additional information or inquiries regarding the exhibit or the John N. Warfield papers, please contact Special Collections & Archives at speccoll@gmu.edu or 703-993-2220.

Case 1 of the four-case exhibit: "The Life and Work of Dr. John N. Warfield" at George Mason University Libraries, Fenwick Library, Fairfax, Virginia Campus.

Written by Bob Vay and Christine Cheng.

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