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Professor Sir Adrian Smith FRS, currently Director General, Knowledge and Innovation, at the Department of Business, Innovation and Skills, is to be the new Vice-Chancellor of the University of London. He will take up his post on 1 September 2012, succeeding Professor Geoffrey Crossick, who will stand down this summer. The Vice-Chancellor is the principal officer of the University and is responsible to the Board of Trustees for the organisation and conduct of the business of the University.
Sir Adrian said: “As an ex head of QMUL and an ex Deputy Vice-Chancellor of the University I am very aware of both the challenges and opportunities of the national and international higher education landscapes over the coming years. I look forward to working with all colleagues across the University to ensure we best position ourselves to overcome the challenges and take advantage of the opportunities.”
Announcing the appointment, Dame Jenny Abramsky, Chair of the Board of Trustees of the University, said: “I am so pleased that someone of Sir Adrian Smith's stature and reputation will be the next Vice-Chancellor. His immense knowledge of higher education and his long association with the University and its Colleges make him ideally placed to lead the University through its future challenges”.
Sir Adrian was Principal of Queen Mary, University of London, for ten years during which time he also served as Deputy Vice-Chancellor of the University of London, before joining the Department of Business, Innovation and Skills in 2008 as Director General, Science and Research, taking his present role in 2010. He had previously held posts at Imperial College London, including Chair of Statistics and Head of the Department of Mathematics. From 1977–1990 he was Professor of Statistics and Head of Department of Mathematics at Nottingham University. He was educated at Selwyn College Cambridge (BA Mathematics) and at University College London where his PhD supervisor was Dennis Lindley.
Recently he has been Treasurer of Universities UK and Deputy Chair of the UK Statistics Authority, he has also advised the Office for National Statistics, the Department of the Environment, the Nuclear Waste Inspectorate and the Ministry of Defence. A past President of the Royal Statistical Society, he was elected a Fellow of the Royal Society in 2001 and was appointed a Knight Bachelor in the 2011 New Year Honours.