Head of Department of Physics

Professor Michele Dougherty, FRS, has accepted appointment as Head of the Department of Physics with effect from 1 January 2018, for a period of 5 years.

Professor Dougherty joined the College in 1991 as a Postdoctoral Research Assistant, and was appointed Professor of Space Physics in 2004.

Professor Dougherty is Principal Investigator for the magnetometer instrument onboard the Cassini spacecraft on its mission to explore Saturn and its neighbourhood. Her innovative use of magnetic field data has had an enormous impact on our understanding of the moons in our Solar System. Michele also lead the European science team which made the case to the European Space Agency for a mission to Jupiter and its moons and has subsequently been selected as the Principal Investigator on the magnetometer instrument for this mission called JUICE, due for launch in 2022 and scheduled to go into orbit around Jupiter’s largest moon, Ganymede, in 2032. In recognition of her research contribution and leadership, she has received the Institute of Physics Chree medal in 2007, the Royal Society’s 2008 Hughes Medal, a prestigious Royal Society Research Professorship in 2014 and most recently the Royal Astronomical Society Gold medal in 2017.

Dr Weir will be Acting Head of Department from 1 July 2017 until 31 December 2017.

Dr Kenny Weir joined Imperial College as a lecturer in 1994. In the Department of Physics he held the role of Senior Tutor 1998-2002 and from 2005 has held the role of Associate Head of Department which from 2016 incorporated Director of Research. His research interests are in optical metrology, optical fibre sensors and biomimetics in photonics. He is a Fellow of the Institute of Physics.

John Neilson

College Secretary & Registrar

Director, Digital Learning Hub

Gideon Shimshon has accepted appointment as Director, Digital Learning Hub from 1 July 2017, for a period of three years.

In this new role, reporting to the Vice-Provost (Education), Gideon will be tasked with increasing the level of online and digital innovative education-related activity across Imperial, with the ultimate goal of establishing the College as a centre of excellence in this area within the sector. He will also play a key role in delivering the College’s new Digital Learning Strategy.

Gideon joins the College from Leiden University where he is currently Director of the Centre for Innovation. In this role, he founded the Leiden Online Learning and New Media Labs, which now offer MOOCs to 750,000 students worldwide, as well as HumanityX – an initiative which works with UN organisations, companies and NGOs to develop digital innovations for the peace, justice and humanitarian sectors.

John Neilson
College Secretary & Registrar

Dean of the Faculty of Engineering

Professor Nigel Brandon OBE FREng has accepted appointment as Dean of the Faculty of Engineering from 1 October 2017, for a period of 5 years. He will be the Dean-elect from 1 August 2017.

In this role Professor Brandon will be responsible for providing strategic leadership, planning and coordination for the Faculty of Engineering, and for driving continuing excellence in research and education. He will be a senior member of the College’s staff, sitting on the College Council, President’s Board and Provost’s Board.

Professor Brandon joined Imperial as Senior Lecturer in the then TH Huxley School for Environment, Earth Sciences and Engineering in 1998, having previously completed his PhD at Imperial. He transferred to the then Department of Chemical Engineering and Chemical Technology in 2001 and was appointed to the Shell Chair in Sustainable Development in Energy in the Department of Earth Science and Engineering in 2004. He held the role of Director of the Energy Futures Lab from 2005-2014, and was the founder of it as a College global challenge institute in 2009. Professor Brandon is currently Director of the Sustainable Gas Institute, the BG Chair in Sustainable Gas, and Vice-Dean (Research) for the Faculty of Engineering.

Professor Brandon’s research is focused on electrochemical devices for energy applications, with a particular focus on fuel cells, electrolysers, and batteries. He was elected a Fellow of the Royal Academy of Engineering in 2008, and was awarded an OBE for services to UK-China science in 2011.

John Neilson
College Secretary & Registrar