President's foreword

It was a great honour to join Imperial College London as President in August 2022. I have admired Imperial from afar over the years, as a world-changing institution with a unique history, magnificent track record of achievements and enormous potential.

To bookend my career at this great institution is also a very personal privilege because I was first inspired to pursue a career as a clinicianscientist in nephrology during a medical student elective at the Hammersmith Hospital, one of Imperial’s clinical partners, in 1981.

Reflecting on the year covered by this Annual Report, I see an institution that has endured ongoing challenges while delivering many significant achievements. My thanks go to the hard work and dedication of the entire Imperial community.

Today Imperial is a global powerhouse that is truly distinctive because of three elements: its focus on business, engineering, medicine and science; its passion for innovation, translation and impact for societal benefit; and its location in one of the world’s greatest cities. This is what attracted me to Imperial and what continues to attract the brightest minds from across the world.

As I have been meeting staff and students since becoming President, it’s clear they have passion for innovation and want to make the world a better place. And they are doing just that: the Imperial community is generating and harnessing new knowledge and technologies to make our world healthier, smarter, safer and more sustainable.

Even in my first couple of months, it was inspiring to learn more about truly groundbreaking initiatives such as Imperial’s new Institute for Deep Tech Entrepreneurship, our Institute for Security Science and Technology, our new Brahmal Vasudevan Institute for Sustainable Aviation, the recently established Institute of Infection, and I-X at White City.

There is much to feel positive about. But I know that recent years have included real challenges. Our community’s efforts to keep Imperial’s education and research activities going during the pandemic were heroic, and during that time the Imperial community proved itself to be both creative and resilient academically, and empathetic, collaborative and supportive.

All these efforts and innovations have been recognised throughout this year in numerous awards and global league tables. We were named University of the Year 2022 and University of Year for Student Experience 2022 by The Times and Sunday Times Good University Guide, awarded a Queen’s Anniversary Prize for our response to COVID-19, ranked first for research quality in the recent Research Excellence Framework and gained prestigious equality, diversity and inclusion charters.

Although Imperial’s recent performance has been outstanding, these successes have raised our ambition. We are acutely aware that Imperial cannot afford to rest on its laurels as the world of higher education and research is changing rapidly, and our global competitors continue to invest and evolve. It is precisely because of the recent shifts in our world that over the next year we will take a fresh look at Imperial’s strategy. Our refreshed strategy will capture our vision and ambition for the decades ahead; establish a roadmap to guide our decision-making and investments; and, very importantly, inspire others to join us, partner with us and invest in us. Imperial’s fundamentals are very strong, and it has extraordinary potential thanks to our dedicated staff, students, alumni and friends.

We have exciting developments ahead. Our White City Campus is a shining example of how a world-class researchintensive university can develop a new precinct that is transformational for its own educational, research and innovation activities and a catalyst for levelling-up, urban regeneration and economic growth.

We will continue to strive for excellence in all areas of our mission and continue to strengthen our position as a world-leading and world-changing university.

Professor Hugh Brady
President of Imperial College London

Read more about Imperial in 2021–22

Farewell to Professor Alice P. Gast

Professor Alice Gast

On 31 July 2022, Professor Alice P. Gast’s term as President of Imperial College London ended and she was succeeded by the College’s new President, Professor Hugh Brady.

Professor Gast was appointed as President of Imperial in 2014. During her eight-year term, Professor Gast promoted collaboration and societal engagement, and increased Imperial’s visibility and influence around the world. She also developed closer working relationships with government and stakeholders, enhanced alumni relations and philanthropic opportunities, and oversaw the rapid development of the White City Campus. 

Professor Gast is now Emeritus Professor of Chemical Engineering at Imperial.