Mark Smith, deputy vice-chancellor at Warwick, will replace Paul Wellings when he leaves Lancaster in December to move to the University of Wollongong in Australia.
Bryan Gray, pro-chancellor and chair of council at Lancaster, said Professor Smith was an “exceptional individual who will lead the university through unprecedented change in the higher education sector”.
Professor Smith has been at Warwick since 1998, and held various roles within the department of physics before being appointed chair of the faculty of science in 2005.
He was named pro vice-chancellor for research in 2007 and took up his current role in March last year.
Commenting after being named as Lancaster’s sixth vice-chancellor, he said he was “tremendously excited” about the move.
“I am delighted to have this opportunity to work with the community of talented colleagues to advance the high quality of teaching and research and to pursue Lancaster’s international ambitions,” he said.
Speaking to Times Higher Education last year about his plans at Warwick, Professor Smith said that the key to advancing an institution was to make appointments that would benefit more than one department.
“Interdisciplinarity has become something that sounds a bit passe now, but it is one of the key things that will make that vision a reality,” he said.