Visiting Professors Appointed

Visiting Professors Appointed

Three new visiting professors have been appointed to the e-Research Centre. These are Mark Ellisman, Professor of Neurosciences and Bioengineering, Director of the Center for Research in Biological Systems at University of California, San Diego; Neil Geddes, Director of the e-Science Centre, UK Science and Technology Facilities Council (STFC); and Ron Perrot, Emeritus Professor of Software Engineering, Director of the Belfast e-Science Centre, The Queen's University of Belfast.

The title of Visiting Professor  in e-research has been conferred by the Mathematical, Physical and Life Sciences Board for 3 years, acting on recommendation from the Oxford e-Research Centre in recognition of the contributions they will make to research in both the Centre and elsewhere in the Division.


About Mark Ellisman

Dr. Mark Ellisman is Professor of Neurosciences and Bioengineering at the University of California San Diego. He is an expert in the development and application of network and information technologies to advance the biological sciences. His research furthers investigations in the basic molecular and cellular mechanisms of the nervous system and enables the development of advanced technologies in microscopy and computational biology. He is a pioneer in the development of three-dimensional, light and electron microscopy and the application of advanced imaging technologies and computational resources to achieve greater understanding of cellular structure and function, particularly applied to the nervous system. He has co-authored several hundred publications in the fields of neuroscience, labelling technologies for molecular imaging, development of advanced research instrumentation, image processing, visualisation and knowledge management. 

Professor Ellisman has collaborators in both MPLS and Med Sci Divisions, as such he will assist the e-Research Centre in their efforts to engage with the medical sciences division. He is an international leader in neuroinformatics and neuroscience and will assist researchers at the University in further developing the international collaborations that will be required to create winning research activities in these areas. He is already assisting the e-Research Centre by being part of the NeuroHub advisory group and the e-Research South platform advisory group.  These are two key activities within the Centre.  

About Neil Geddes

Neil Geddes obtained his doctorate in High Energy Particle Physics (HEP) from the University of Oxford in 1986. The same year Neil joined the Particle Physics Department at the Rutherford Appleton Laboratory (RAL) where he remained until 2001. During this time Neil spent periods at CERN and SLAC, working as a member of the OPAL and BaBar collaborations to pursue research in Quantum Chromodynamics hadronisation models and matter-antimatter asymmetries.

Throughout his career Neil has had a strong interest in distributed computing and in April 2001 he joined the UK’s Particle Physics and Astronomy Research Council (PPARC) to direct their e-science programme, which included the creation of the LHC Computing Grid Project. In April 2004 Neil took up the post of Director of the UK’s National Grid Service, with responsibility for coordinating UK work in Grid deployment and. He took over as head of the e-Science Department in October 2005.

As the UK delegate to the EU e-Infrastructure Reflection Group (eIRG) Neil has and has been active in developing e-Infrastructure for research across Europe and was an invited speaker on this topic at the first ERA conference in 2009

Neil is currently one of the partners in e-Research South, an EPSRC funded platform grant building further on existing collaborations between Oxford, Reading and Southampton Universities and the STFC e-Science Centre at the Rutherford Appleton Laboratory.

A key activity for the e-Research Centre is that of research infrastructure and in particular provision of tools and infrastructure to support large-scale data driven science. The e-Science Centre at STFC are leading in the UK in this area and having Neil as a visiting Prof will assist us in building the appropriate collaboration nationally and internationally, he will be in a position to offer seminars and to assist in the graduate training in these areas. 

About Ron Perrot

Ron Perrott retired recently as Professor of Software Engineering in the School of Computer Science at the Queen's University of Belfast; a post he held since 1984.    He is currently Emeritus Professor in the University as well as the Director of the Belfast e-Science Centre one of a small number of Centres set up by the UK Research Councils and the Department of Trade and Industry to develop and promote cloud technology both within academia and industry. He has a long established and well documented record of research in the areas of languages, compilers, software engineering, supercomputing/distributed and parallel systems and operating systems, which is detailed in over 150 scientific papers. In addition, he has authored/edited five books on these topics. Dr Perrott's current research interests are based on software for the new and emerging computing paradigms such as cloud computing, parallel and distributed computing and supercomputing. This work was started when he was employed at the NASA Ames Research Center in California where he worked on a software system for the world's first supercomputer, the Illiac 4.

He has also been active in promoting UK research and technology. For 6 years he was Chairman of the UK’s High End Computing Strategy Committee which advises the UK’s Research Councils on strategic issues and policy initiatives in high performance computing.  He was member of the Informatics Committee set up by the UK’s Office of Science and Technology to scope the e-Science initiative and subsequently was a member of the e-Science Steering Committee and the e-Science Technical Advisory Group which directed the e-Science Initiative nationally. In Europe he was a member of the EU Information Society Monitoring Panel as well as Rapporteur of the EU Working Group on Grid Computing and IPPA Panel.  More recently he chaired an EU Committee to develop a European roadmap in software services and has been invited by the European Union and also the US National Science Foundation to act as an expert in the development and assessment of their IT programmes.

Professor Perott is internationally recognised for his activities in high-performance computing.  He has long standing collaborations with European consortia as well as strong ties to activities in the USA.  High-peformance computing is of growing importance to the Centre and to the University.  Professor Perrott will assist us in developing that research portfolio, particular through EU collaborations, and will also give lectures on the growing graduate programme of education in high-performance computing.