Lawrence D. Burns is the former corporate vice president of Research and Development for General Motors. Burns oversaw GM's advanced technology, innovation programs, and corporate strategy. He was a member of GM’s Automotive Strategy Board and Automotive Product Board. Within GM, he personally championed vehicle electrification, “connected” vehicles, fuel cells, bio-fuels, advanced batteries, autonomous driving, and a series of innovative concept vehicles. He has been a leading advocate for design and technology innovation focused on the total customer experience and the application of operations research. . He is a co-author of Reinventing the Automobile: Personal Urban Mobility for the 21st Century.
Burns was invited to speak at the 2005 TED Conference.