Pro-Vice-Chancellor, Water, Energy and Environment and member of the Senior Management team
Simon was appointed Pro-Vice Chancellor of Cranfield University in 2014. He leads the School of Water, Energy and Environment and has also been Pro-Vice-Chancellor International since 2018.
The School provides engineering science opportunities for its 350 postgraduates in the global green economy. Through its work, the University has won two Queen’s Anniversary Prizes for Higher Education, in water and sanitation hygiene (2015) and in soils data management (2017). Strategic partnerships have been forged with Unilever, Pepsico, Severn Trent Water, Scottish Water and Anglian Water.
The School has hosted seven UKRI centres for doctoral training, two in water engineering, in soil science, risk, offshore renewables, food systems and in environmental science for the Midlands region. Simon has overseen £40m of capital investment in technical facilities, many of which represent national capability, including a close collaboration with NERC’s national Facility for Airborne Atmospheric Measurements within Cranfield’s global research airport.
A member of the University Executive, Simon led the University’s submission for its Athena SWAN Bronze award in 2017. He has authored Cranfield’s internationalisation strategy and partnerships have followed with Nanyang Technological University (2016), Royal Melbourne Institute of Technology (2016), Mohammed VI Polytechnic University (2019) and Purdue University (2019). He has developed new transnational educational business with Muscat (2017-) and Jiangsu Universities (2018-).
An environmental engineer (Imperial College, PhD 1990) with 160 journal publications, Simon is a leading proponent of environmental risk management; directing institutes for Government and the Research Councils (2008-12); drafting guidelines on environmental risk; and championing research centres for risk for EPSRC and NERC. His research seeks to reconcile society's unease about pollution with the responsibilities of organisations for its safe management.
Beyond academe, Simon’s contributions have been as a member of the Government’s Interdepartmental Liaison Group on Risk Assessment (1998-2002); the Joint engineering institutions’ ‘Hazards Forum’ (2001-04); BBSRC’s Beringer Panel (2007-8); HMT’s Engineering and Interdependencies Expert Group (2010-12); and as an Editor for Science of the Total Environment (2002-18). He is an active contributor to the Royal Academy of Engineering and an editorial board member of Ingenia, its outreach magazine (2020-). Most recently, Simon supported the development Canada’s first national standard on regulating public risk management.