Imperial College London


Central FacultyInternational Relations Office

Head of the International Relations Office



+44 (0)20 7594 6836m.mcternan




Faculty BuildingSouth Kensington Campus





Imperial is a world top ten university. Imperial research is defined by its internationalism, innovation and impact. Two-thirds of our research involves an international collaborator, spanning more than 130 countries, making us the UK’s most international university. The College ranks number 2 in Europe in the Reuters world ranking for Innovative Universities. Imperial’s research impact is number one in the UK, according to the Research Excellence Framework and has the highest proportion of 4* (world-leading) and 3* (internationally excellent) academics in the UK.

The International Relations Office (IRO) facilitates the development and stewardship of international partnerships with peer universities, governments and related organisations, with an overarching aim to support the College in collaborating with and educating the best globally.

The team serves four core functions:

1. Global strategy development / business development: To identify emerging opportunities for the College to develop international peer-to-peer academic/government partnerships that help address global challenges and attract the best global talent.

2. Global strategy implementation / delivery: To coordinate and/or deliver specific international academic and education projects that enable the College to collaborate with and educate the global best.

3. Global engagement and reputation-building- To contribute to the College’s global reputation through participating in and forming international networks and by facilitating international engagement/ speaking platforms for academic leaders and College leadership.

4. Service and Stewardship: To provide expert, evidence-led advice to the College community and provide relationship management services to inform effective decision-making on international matters.

Approach to International Partnerships
The IRO supports Imperial academics with their work and projects spanning across 192 countries. Imperial works with international partners in many ways, such as through joint laboratories and centres, seed funds and projects, and student and staff exchanges. We are open to new innovative global relationships with universities, governments and international organisations, throughout the world.

Michael was previously the College Senior International Relations Officer for Europe. Prior to his time at Imperial, Michael worked on developing international research and knowledge exchange partnerships at the University of Strathclyde. Before that, Michael held a senior leadership role at a leading international thinktank and policy network, focused on bringing together heads of state, politicians, policymakers, business and industry leaders, public service professionals, and academic researchers.