As well as David Greenaway and David Eastwood, there are also knighthoods for neuroscientist Colin Blakemore, psychologist Cary Cooper, historian Thomas Devine, theoretical physicist Thomas Bannerman and “Professor Risk”, statistician David Spiegelhalter.
Michael Owen, director of the Medical Research Centre’s MRC Centre for Neuropsychiatric Genetics and Genomics at Cardiff University, is also knighted, as is vice-president of the Royal Society John Pethica and Richard Sorabji, emeritus professor of philosophy at King’s College London.
Jessica Corner, dean of health sciences at University of Southampton, is made a dame for services to healthcare, research and education.
She is inducted into the damehood alongside Hollywood actress Angelina Jolie, who is made an honorary dame for her charitable work seeking to end sexual violence in warzones.
Others from higher education to receive honours include Bob Cryan, vice-chancellor of the University of Huddersfield – the 2013 Times Higher Education University of the Year - who is made a Commander Officer of the British Empire.
Professor Greenaway, who has led Nottingham since 2008, said he was “speechless” when he heard the news of his knighthood.
Sir David said he was “proud to have spent most of my working life at Nottingham” and said the knighthood was “just as much an honour for the university as it is for me”.
In 2011, both he and Sir David Eastwood launched a groundbreaking partnership between Nottingham and Birmingham with joint working on academic appointments, research, degrees and overseas ventures.
Professor Cryan, who graduated from Huddersfield in engineering before returning to lead the organisation in 2007, said he was “deeply humbled and extremely grateful” to receive the honour.
The university’s chancellor, actor Sir Patrick Stewart congratulated Professor Cryan on his achievement, saying “as a friend, I could not be prouder or more thrilled”.
Others to receive a CBE include Nicholas Crafts, professor of economic history at the University of Warwick, David Delpy, the former chief executive of the Engineering and Physical Sciences Research Council and Steve Egan, deputy chief executive of the Higher Education Funding Council for England.
Colin Jones, professor of history at Queen Mary University of London, Catherine Law, professor of public health and epidemiology at University College London and Denise Lievesley, professor of statistics at King’s College London are also made CBEs.
Jeremy Sanders, pro vice-chancellor for institutional affairs at the University of Cambridge, Susan Vinnicombe, director of the International Centre for Women Leaders at Cranfield University, Alan Walker, professor of social policy and social gerontology at the University of Sheffield and Michael Worton, former vice-provost of University College London also collect CBEs.