Dear colleagues,

I am very pleased to announce that we have appointed Professor Ian Walmsley FRS, an outstanding academic leader and scholar, as our next Provost. Ian will take up his role on 1 September 2018, succeeding James on his retirement. You can find his full biography and our announcement here.

Ian joins us from the University of Oxford, where he is currently Pro-Vice-Chancellor (Research and Innovation) and Hooke Professor of Experimental Physics. As Pro-Vice-Chancellor, Ian has led Oxford's research and innovation strategy and is responsible for coordinating the University’s relationships with its major research funders and the engagement of research activities with wider audiences.

Ian knows Imperial well, as an alumnus who graduated from Imperial with a first class honours degree in physics and as a close colleague to academics in Imperial’s very strong optics section. Ian brings significant leadership experience from roles at Oxford and the University of Rochester. He is also a distinguished physicist whose leadership is widely recognised in the international optics community. In 2012 Ian was elected a Fellow of the Royal Society for his contributions to quantum optics and ultrafast optics. His collegial demeanour and breadth of vision are ideally suited to our community and his strong support for collaboration across disciplines, sectors and nations will make him an outstanding champion for the College.

Ian will be a great asset to the College and I look forward to working with him. Please join me in welcoming him warmly.

With best wishes,


Professor Alice P. Gast
Imperial College London