Appointment of Acting Head of the School of Engineering and Physical Sciences (EPS)


Professor Duncan Hand has been appointed as the Acting Head of School for EPS starting January 2021.

Duncan has been Deputy Head of School for eight years and also previously held the role of Acting Head of School in 2011. He has also held a range of additional appointments, such as Director of the Photonics EngD Centre (2001 - 2007); Director of Postgraduate Research (2001 - 2007); Head of Physics (2007 - 2011); Director of Research (2012 - 2015); Acting Deputy Principal (Pro-VC) Research (2015-2016).

Mark Biggs, Vice Principal and Provost, said, “I very much welcome the appointment of Prof Hand to the role of Acting Head of EPS and look forward to working with him as we seek to make a permanent appointment to the role. His experience as Deputy Head of School, as well as the other senior roles he has held during his Heriot-Watt career, will be invaluable at this time and will provide the continuity of senior leadership that will allow EPS to continue to flourish.”

Professor Hand graduated from the University of St Andrews in 1986 with a BSc in Physics with Electronics, and from the University of Southampton (Optical Fibre Group) in 1991 with a PhD. In 1991 he moved to Heriot-Watt University, initially employed as a Research Associate. In 1997 he was appointed Lecturer in Physics and subsequently promoted to Reader (2001) and Professor of Applied Photonics (2003).

He takes up the role as Steve McLaughlin, previous Head of School, stepped down last month.

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