Top civil servant to lead University of London

A senior civil servant in charge of implementing the government’s higher education policies has been named the new vice-chancellor of the University of London.

June 1, 2012

Sir Adrian Smith, currently director general for knowledge and innovation at the Department for Business, Innovation and Skills, will take up his post on 1 September.

Sir Adrian, a former principal of Queen Mary, University of London, is taking over from Geoffrey Crossick, who will step down in the summer after two years in the job.

As vice-chancellor, Sir Adrian will be the principal officer of the university, which comprises 18 self-governing colleges and institutes.

Sir Adrian, a statistician, said: “As an ex-head of Queen Mary 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 Sir Adrian’s appointment, Dame Jenny Abramsky, chair of the university’s board of trustees, said: “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, who led Queen Mary for 10 years, has also been director general for science and research at BIS and a professor of statistics and head of the department of mathematics at Imperial College London.

He studied for a bachelor’s degree in mathematics at Selwyn College, Cambridge, before taking a PhD at University College London.

He was also professor of statistics and head of the department of mathematics at the University of Nottingham from 1977 to 1990.

A past president of the Royal Statistical Society, he was elected a fellow of the Royal Society in 2001 and knighted in the 2011 New Year’s Honours.

You've reached your article limit.

Register to continue

Registration is free and only takes a moment. Once registered you can read a total of 3 articles each month, plus:

  • Sign up for the editor's highlights
  • Receive World University Rankings news first
  • Get job alerts, shortlist jobs and save job searches
  • Participate in reader discussions and post comments

Have your say

Log in or register to post comments

Featured Jobs

Most Commented

Daniel Mitchell illustration (29 June 2017)

Academics who think they can do the work of professional staff better than professional staff themselves are not showing the kind of respect they expect from others

celebrate, cheer, tef results

Emilie Murphy calls on those who challenged the teaching excellence framework methodology in the past to stop sharing their university ratings with pride

A podium constructed out of wood

There are good reasons why some big names are missing from our roster

Senior academics at Teesside University put at risk of redundancy as summer break gets under way

Thorns and butterflies

Conditions that undermine the notion of scholarly vocation – relentless work, ubiquitous bureaucracy – can cause academics acute distress and spur them to quit, says Ruth Barcan