Renowned geoscientist joins the ranks at Heriot-Watt



A prominent geoscientist is due to join the ranks at Heriot-Watt University.

Dr Mark Bentley will lead a new teaching and research initiative, supporting the oil and gas industry to extend the lives of mature fields around the globe.

This includes the launch of an innovative MSc programme in Integrated Mature Field Management, based at the Institute of Petroleum Engineering (IPE).  

The programme is different to similar existing courses – as it does not solely focus on decommissioning, but looks at an integrated way of how to manage the increasing number of mature fields around the world; this also includes their future use for supporting low-carbon energy production.

Mark comes with 30 years' experience in his field of petroleum engineering and petroleum geosciences. He joins the university from AGR-TRACS where he has delivered tailored training to petroleum engineers and geoscientists across all continents.

He has also worked with teams on numerous field studies as part of AGR's consultancy work.

He previously held posts with Shell International where he was elected Distinguished Lecturer by both the Society of Petroleum Engineers and the European Association of Geoscientists and Engineers.

The academic's specialist field of expertise includes, 3D reservoir modelling of subsurface uncertainty and risk. Mark also recently co-authored a widely read textbook on the subject, which is currently being reprinted in other languages.

Professor Sebastian Geiger, Director of the Institute of Petroleum Engineering at Heriot-Watt University said: “With his excellent knowledge in managing subsurface reservoirs across all stages of field life and his global network and outreach, we're delighted to have Mark on board.

“He was the ideal candidate to lead our new MSc programme in Integrated Mature Field Management and develop new research activities in this area because of his fantastic experience in delivering tailored training courses and profound industry knowledge.

“Both the university and the oil and gas industry will benefit hugely from Mark's presence at Heriot-Watt.”

Dr Mark Bentley added: “It's a huge honour for me to be invited to take this role at Heriot-Watt, an institution I have always admired both for its highly applied approach to industry research and its well respected MSc programmes – the ideas and energy of the group at the university are truly inspirational.”   

“I will also retain a role at AGR TRACS Training, and the particularly exciting opportunity is the exploration of synergies between the world-leading research and teaching at Heriot-Watt and the global network of applied consultancy and tailored training built up at AGR TRACS over the last 25 years. 

“An arm-full of skills are needed to optimally manage reservoirs and the content of the new Mature Field Management MSc programme embraces these. 

“As we head toward the carbon transition we need a clear, forward-looking, global view on managing subsurface energy and Heriot-Watt and IPE in particular are wonderfully placed to achieve this.“