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University Structure

Queen's prides itself on the quality of its academic leadership, with a united team of academics and academic support directors working together to deliver its Vision.

The University is led by its President and Vice-Chancellor, supported by the Registrar and Chief Operating Officer and Pro-Vice-Chancellors, each with specific portfolios.

There are three Faculty groupings, each headed up by a Pro-Vice-Chancellor, and there are 20 Schools each run by a Head of School, supported by a School Manager.

Nine academic support Directorates, which are responsible for the delivery of services ranging from finance and human resources, to estates and student services, complete the University’s organisational structure.

This page contains profiles of the University's management team and the organisational structure. Click on the images to fast-track to an individual profile.

Vice-Chancellor's Office

Statutory Officers
     ‌Orla Corr, Honorary Treasurer
President and Vice-Chancellor          
Pro-Vice-Chancellors         Professor Adrienne Scullion, Pro-Vice-ChancellorProfessor David Jones, Pro-Vice-ChancellorProfessor Mark Price, Pro-Vice-Chancellor Professor Chris Elliott, Pro-Vice-Chancellor James McElnay, PVC for Research and Postgraduates
Academic Support Directorates           Wilma Fee, Director of Academic and Student Affairs Norma Sinte, Director of Development and Alumni Relations Damien Toner, Director of Estates‌‌ Wendy Galbraith, Director of FinanceSean McGuickin, Director of Human Resources‌‌
             John Gormley, Director of Information Services Isabel Jennings, Director of Student PlusScott Rutherford, Director of Research and Enterprise 
Caroline Young, Director of Student Plus

Heads of School Professor Aaron Maule, Acting Head of the School of Biological Sciences ‌ Christopher Hardacre, School of Chemistry and Chemical EngineeringMichael Alcorn, Head of School of Music and Sonic Arts  Head of School of Electronics, Electronic Engineering and Computer Science   Professor Crawford Gribben, Acting Head of School of History and Anthropology   
 Professor Robert Bowman, Head of School of Mathematics and Physics   David Woolfson, Head of School of Pharmacy 


Thomas J Moran

‌The position of University Chancellor is held by leading Irish-American businessman and noted humanitarian, Thomas J Moran.  A native New Yorker with ancestral roots in Fermanagh and Cavan, Tom Moran is listed as one of the top 100 Irish-American business people in the USA. He has been President and Chief Executive Officer of the Mutual of America Life Insurance Company since October 1994, the first person to have been appointed President from within the Company.

He is also Chairman of Concern Worldwide (US), Inc., an international humanitarian relief organisation that operates in 30 of the poorest countries of the world. He has contributed to several humanitarian and community causes, including acting as one of a group of unofficial peace envoys to Northern Ireland throughout the 1990s.

The Chancellor fulfils three main roles – a ceremonial one which involves presiding at degree congregations; an ambassadorial role, where the office holder helps to “open doors” for the University as it seeks to fulfil its mission; and finally as an advisor, available to the Vice-Chancellor and senior management as a “sounding board” and to provide counsel and guidance.

Statutory Officer

Pro-Chancellor and Chair of Senate
Mr Stephen Prenter F.C.A

Mr Stephen Prenter graduated from Queen’s with a degree in Economics, Business Studies and Accounting. In 1989, he was founding partner of BDO chartered accountants and business advisers and served as the firm’s Managing Partner for 19 years, retiring as Chairman in 2009.

He has been involved in strategic investment in Northern Ireland for many years and in the period 2006-2012, served as the University’s Honorary Treasurer.

He is currently a Business Director and Advisor, serving as a non-executive Director at Haldane Shiells Group Limited; a Director of the NI Growth Loan Fund; an elected Council member of Chartered Accountants Ireland; and Chairman of Belfast Grand Opera House Trust.

Dr Stephen Kingon

Stephen Kingon graduated from Queen’s in 1968 with a BA degree. He joined Coopers and Lybrand in 1969, and qualified as a chartered accountant in 1972. By 1993, he was Managing Partner in charge of the Northern Ireland firm. In 1998, he became Managing Partner of PricewaterhouseCoopers, following the merger of Coopers and Lybrand with Price Waterhouse. He is currently the Principal of Stephen Kingon Associates – Chartered Accountants and holds several non-executive positions, including Allied Irish Bank (UK) plc.

He is a former Chairman of Invest Northern Ireland; the Ulster Society of Chartered Accountants; the NI Chamber of Commerce; Business in the Community NI; and the Institute of Management Consultants. Currently, he is Chairman of the NI Centre for Competitiveness, Northern Ireland Electricity and the Balcas Group of Companies. Stephen also serves on the Board of the Belfast Harbour Commissioners.

Orla Corr, Honorary Treasurer

Honorary Treasurer
Orla Corr

A Queen’s graduate, Orla is a shareholder and Executive Chair of The McAvoy Group Limited. She was the first woman to be introduced into the Invest NI Entrepreneurial Hall of Fame in recognition of her business achievements within the McAvoy Group.  Orla is also a past winner of the Women in Business NI’s Award for Entrepreneurship / Innovation and of the Outstanding Business Woman of the Year. She received an OBE in 2011 for services to the construction industry in Northern Ireland.  Orla is a Director of the Odyssey Trust Company (OTC) and Chair of Odyssey Millennium Limited, OTC’s commercial trading company.

President and Vice-Chancellor

Professor Patrick Johnston, President and Vice-ChancellorProfessor Patrick Johnston

Professor Patrick Johnston took up the post of President and Vice-Chancellor on 1 March 2014.

Professor Johnston joined Queen’s in 1996 as Professor of Oncology, later leading the establishment of the Centre for Cancer Research and Cell Biology and becoming its Director. Prior to taking up his post of President and Vice-Chancellor, he was Dean of the School of Medicine, Dentistry and Biomedical Sciences.

His own research focus over 25 years has been on the understanding of mechanisms of drug resistance to therapeutic agents.

In 2012, he received a Diamond Jubilee Queen’s Anniversary Prize from her Majesty the Queen for the university-led reorganisation of cancer care in Northern Ireland where there has been a reduction in cancer mortality rates.

He is a Fellow of the Academy of Medical Sciences and the European Academy of Cancer Sciences. In 2013, he was named winner of the international Bob Pinedo Cancer Care Prize. He serves on the Medical Research Council Strategy Board and was appointed chair of the MRC Translational Research Group in 2012. He is a founder of Almac Diagnostics and the Society for Translational Oncology.


Professor Adrienne ScullionPro-Vice-Chancellor for Arts, Humanities and Social Sciences
Professor Adrienne Scullion

Professor Adrienne Scullion is the Pro-Vice-Chancellor for Arts, Humanities and Social Sciences.

Previously Professor Scullion held the James Arnott Chair in Drama at the University of Glasgow where she was also the Dean of Research in the College of Arts and Senate Assessor.  She has over twenty years’ post-doctoral experience and is research active in the arts and humanities, specifically in Theatre Studies: she is a theatre historian with expertise in theatre in Scotland and ongoing research interests on women theatre makers, theatre for children and young people and cultural policy, especially national and regional policies and provision. 

She has held academic posts at Trinity College Dublin and the University of Glasgow and is a Fellow of the Royal Society of Edinburgh. She was a member of the REF2014 and RAE2008 subpanels for her discipline and is a member of the AHRC’s Peer Review College, having chaired and served on many of its awards and prioritisation panels as well as contributing to its PRC induction and training processes. 

Professor Scullion has had a range of external and advisory roles with Russell Group and other research-intensive universities, post-92 universities, Small Specialist Institutions and international institutions. She is also the chair of the Citizens’ Theatre, Glasgow, a trustee of the National Library of Scotland and a lay member of the Court of Edinburgh Napier University.  

Pro-Vice-Chancellor for Education and Students
Professor David Jones

David Jones gained a BSc (1st class honours) in Pharmacy (1985), a PhD in Pharmaceutics (1988) and, in 2006, a DSc., all from Queen's University Belfast. He registered with the Pharmaceutical Society of Northern Ireland in 1989. From 1989-1992 he was a lecturer in Pharmaceutics at the University of Otago and from 1992-1994 he held the position of Head of Formulations at Norbrook Industries Limited (NI).  In 1994 he was appointed to a lectureship at Queen's School of Pharmacy, and was promoted to a Senior Lectureship in 1997. Since 1999 he holds a personal Chair (in Biomaterial Sciences) at the School of Pharmacy, Queen's University Belfast.

His research concerns the characterisation, formulation and engineering of pharmaceutical materials/dosage forms and biomedical devices. He is the author of two textbooks, 6 patents and over 400 research papers/communications and has been awarded the Lilly prize for pharmaceutical research and the British Pharmaceutical Conference Science Award.

Professor Jones is both a Chartered Engineer and a Chartered Chemist and is an elected Fellow of the Pharmaceutical Society of Northern Ireland, a Fellow of the Institute of Materials, Minerals and Mining, a Fellow of the Royal Statistical Society, a Member of the Royal Society of Chemistry and a Member of the Institute of Engineers in Ireland. He is the Editor of the Journal of Pharmacy and Pharmacology and is a previous holder of the prestigious position of a Royal Society Industrial Fellow.


Professor Mark Price for Pro-Vice-Chancellor, Engineering and Physical Sciences

Pro-Vice-Chancellor for Engineering and Physical Sciences
Professor Mark Price

Professor Mark Price is the Pro-Vice-Chancellor for Engineering and Physical Sciences.

Professor Price obtained his primary degree in Aeronautical Engineering 1987 and took up his first post as a Stress Engineer in the aerospace industry. He came back to Queen's to undertake a PhD in Mechanical Engineering which was completed in 1993. He then returned to industry as a software engineer and project manager to implement his research work, where he remained until returning to academia in 1998, becoming a Chartered Engineer along the way with the British Computer Society, and a Fellow of the Institution of Mechanical Engineers and a Fellow of the Royal Aeronautical Society.

With a strong focus on design applications and integrated cost models including manufacturing processing effects in design simulations, he has research interests in the analysis and design of airframes, and design automation. A recipient of the 2006 Thomas Hawksley medal from the IMechE for published work on friction stir welding in airframe design, he has a record of high quality international publications, with an ethos of undertaking fundamental research and subsequently using this to address industrial needs, and develop advanced technology solutions which impact industrial practice, working with local and international companies.

Professor Price has wide ranging international collaborations, and has contributed to the profession in particular through his involvement with technical committees of the American Institute of Aeronautics and Astronautics in their Aircraft Design TC and the Value Driven Design Programme Committee. He is a visiting Professor in the University of Tianjin and also in Nanjing University of Aeronautics and Astronautics. He has held key administrative and leadership roles including Head of Teaching for Aeronautical Engineering, and was a University Subject Review auditor for the quality assurance of degree programmes, becoming Director of Research for Aerospace in 2007, Head of School in 2011, and Pro-Vice-Chancellor in 2015.

Professor Chris Elliott, Pro-Vice-Chancellor, Medicine, Health and Life Sciences

Pro-Vice-Chancellor for Medicine, Health and Life Sciences
Professor Chris Elliott

Professor Chris Elliott is the Pro-Vice-Chancellor for Medicine, Health and Life Sciences.

He graduated with an MSc in Biomedical Sciences from the University of Ulster and completed a PhD at Queen's. He worked for the Department of Agriculture and Rural Development's Science Service in a variety of research positions before becoming the Chair of Food Safety at Queen's University in 2006. He was the first director of the Institute of Agri-food and Land Use and founded the Institute for Global Food Security in 2013.

His main research interests are in the development of innovative techniques to provide early warning of toxin threats across complex food supply systems. Protecting the integrity of the food supply chain from fraud is also a key research topic and he led the independent review of Britain’s food system following the 2013 horsemeat scandal.

He is also a visiting Professor at the China Agriculture University in Beijing, a recipient of a Winston Churchill Fellowship and is an elected Fellow of the Royal Society of Chemistry, Royal Society of Biology and the Institute of Food Science and Technology.

James McElnay

Pro-Vice-Chancellor for Research, Enterprise and Postgraduate Affairs
Professor James McElnay

Professor McElnay took up the post of Pro-Vice-Chancellor on 1 July 2008.

He gained his BSc and PhD from Queen's and, after registration as a qualified pharmacist, he spent a year at the University of Iowa on a postdoctoral fellowship. He continued his academic career at Queen's and spent a year as a visiting professor at the Texas Medical Centre in Houston before being awarded a Chair of Pharmacy Practice in 1995. He was Head of the School of Pharmacy from 1994 to 2001 and Dean of the Faculty of Science and Agriculture from 2001 to 2005.

Professor McElnay is a Fellow of the American College of Clinical Pharmacy, of the Royal Pharmaceutical Society of Great Britain and the Pharmaceutical Society of Northern Ireland. His research interests lie in the area of clinical pharmacy, with particular reference to pharmaceutical care and paediatric therapy.


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Registrar and Chief Operating Officer

‌James O'Kane 

As an established member of the University's senior management team, James O’Kane, as Registrar and Chief Operating Officer, plays a leading role in helping to realise Queen’s Vision to be a global player at the heart of the local community.

The Registrar and Chief Operating Officer is head of a unified administration and chairs the University Operating Board. His main roles are to lead, manage and coordinate the provision of a comprehensive range of high quality professional support services and to formulate and co-ordinate strategies, policies and procedures in support of the Vision for Queen's.

An accountant by profession, James O'Kane was appointed Registrar and Chief Operating Officer in 1999, after nearly six years as the University's Director of Finance. An advocate of technology and knowledge transfer he is a Director of a number of companies including QUBIS Ltd., NI Challenge Fund Ltd and Northern Ireland Science Park Holdings Ltd.  He is also currently a Director of the Belfast Health and Social Care Trust and was formerly the Chairman of the Belfast Metropolitan College, the largest provider of tertiary education in Northern Ireland.

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Academic Support Directorates

Director of Academic and Student Affairs
Wilma Fee

Wilma FeeAs Director of Academic and Student Affairs, Wilma Fee leads a major support service for students and academic matters. The Directorate is comprised of four major divisions - Academic Affairs, Student Affairs, Educational and Skills Development, and Student Services and Systems. These divisions provide the framework for the delivery of services to students and the academic infrastructure for quality assurance and regulation, and student appeals. The Directorate is also responsible for a purpose-designed Student Guidance Centre, which provides a single point of access and guidance for all students and and the Graduate School, which is an information, study and teaching facility exclusively for Postgraduate students. The Directorate works closely with Schools and other key directorates in delivering the Corporate Plan and Education Strategy for the University, and in developing and enhancing the processes and systems which underpin learning and teaching of students. It is most closely associated with the provision of leadership and support for the 'Student Experience', from enrolment through to graduation, and for the implementation of the University’s Education Strategy.

A graduate of both Queen’s University and the University of Ulster, Wilma Fee joined Queen’s in 1995 as Faculty Administrator for the Faculty of Humanities, and was Head of the Postgraduate Office before taking up the post of Director of Academic and Student Affairs in May 2006. She is an active member of the national Association of University Administrators, having served as a member of the Executive Committee, the Conferences Committee, and as Regional Coordinator for Ireland.

Visit the Directorate of Academic & Student Affairs website.

Director of Development and Alumni Relations
Norma SinteNorma Sinte

The Directorate of Development and Alumni Relations has spearheaded the £150 million philanthropic Campaign for Queen's, set up the Queen's University of Belfast Foundation Board and the Friends of Queen's, and undertaken responsibility for a number of fund-raising initiatives and events and enhancing relationships with Queen's graduates.

Norma Sinte joined Queen's in 2000 as Head of Corporate and Major Gifts Fundraising and has been Director since November 2008. A graduate of Queen's, she worked as Marketing and Development Manager at the Ulster Orchestra. Prior to this she worked in the private sector in sales and marketing management in Northern Ireland, Great Britain and Europe. She is a member of the Board of the Seamus Heaney Centre for Poetry at Queen's and a member of the Northern Ireland Council of the Prince's Trust.

Visit the Development & Alumni Relations Directorate website.

Damien Toner, Director of EstatesDirector of Estates
Damien Toner

The Estates Directorate operates across four units: Estates planning and property management; development of capital projects; delivery of facilities management and estate services such as maintenance, portering, security, cleaning and energy management; and administration and resources.   Operating in an integrated team environment, the Directorate ensures the University estate is developed, utilised and managed efficiently and effectively, ensuring the continued provision of a high-quality learning, teaching and research environment.

‌Damien joined Queen’s as Director of Estates in March 2015.  Prior to joining the University, Damien was a senior Director for one of the UK’s largest infrastructure support service companies and has worked in both the public and private sectors.  Damien is a Member of the Royal Institution of Chartered Surveyors and a graduate of the University of Ulster with twenty years’ experience in the construction, estates and facilities management industries.

Visit the Estates Directorate website.

Wendy Galbraith, Director of FinanceDirector of Finance
Wendy Galbraith

The key objective of the Finance Directorate is to support the teaching, research and other activities of the University through the efficient planning, management and control of its financial and business affairs, the control of its funds and assets, together with the development and implementation of effective systems and services to improve the financial wellbeing of the institution.

Wendy Galbraith joined Queen’s as Director of Finance in October 2010. Wendy is a Fellow of the Institute of Chartered Accountants in Ireland and joined the University from the Belfast Health and Social Care Trust where she held the post of Director of Finance and was latterly also the Deputy Chief Executive. She graduated from Dundee University with a First Class BSc Honours in Mathematics and Statistics and trained in accountancy with Price Waterhouse, moving to Deloitte and Touche in 1994 as a manager in their public sector consulting practice. She has extensive experience across a wide range of strategic financial management arenas in the public and voluntary sectors.

Visit the Finance Directorate website.

Director of Human Resources
Sean McGuickinSean McGuickin

The Human Resources Directorate is comprised of five units - Personnel, Equal Opportunities, Legal Services, Staff Training and Development, and Occupational Health and Safety.  Each unit offers professional support to service the needs of a workforce of nearly 3,500 people. Additionally the Occupational Health and Safety Service works closely with academic schools, the Estates and Student Services Directorates in ensuring students learn and indeed live in a safe environment.

The University is also one of Northern Ireland’s leading employers and plays a vital role in providing career opportunities for its employees. The key challenges facing the Directorate are to work even closer with its key users and respond to their needs ensuring that it contributes to the recruitment, retention and development of key staff. As the University strives to enhance its reputation nationally and internationally the Directorate needs to respond by having in place policies, practices and procedures, conditions of service which enable Queen's to compete with other leading universities.

Director Sean McGuickin was appointed in October 2001 to contribute to the development of strategies that will continue to make the most of these human resources, which are by far the University's greatest asset. Setting his own challenges is nothing new.  He left school in Belfast at 16 and later studied part-time for his primary degree and postgraduate qualifications while progressing to senior positions in his career.

Visit the Human Resources Directorate website.

John GormleyDirector of Information Services
John Gormley

The Directorate of Information Services provides a wide range of library and IT services which underpin the research, education and administrative work of the University.

Mr Gormley graduated from the University of Ulster with first-class honours in Computing and Information Systems before completing an MBA in Higher Education Management at the Institute of Education in London. He joined the staff of Queen's in 2000 after a career in IT in the private sector and claims that "contrary to popular myth", he finds that higher education is "at least as dynamic and challenging".

Visit the Information Services Directorate website.

Isabel JenningsDirector of Marketing, Recruitment, Communications and Internationalisation
Isabel Jennings

Isabel graduated with a BA Hons degree and a Masters in Business Administration from Queen's University, and has substantial experience of working in both the public and private sectors in Northern Ireland, Great Britain, Europe, USA and Asia. Before joining Queen's in January 2006 Isabel worked as a Commercial Development Director for TBI plc whose portfolio of airports include Belfast International Airport. In this capacity she was proactive in the delivery of a range of commercial strategies and formed part of the TBI Acquisitions Team working on properties in Stockholm and Bratislava. Isabel is currently a member of the Institute of Directors, and a graduate member of the Chartered Institute of Marketing.


Director of Research and Enterprise
Scott Rutherford

‌Scott Rutherford joined Queen’s as Director of Research and Enterprise in November 2010. Scott provides strategic oversight and leadership for the research development and knowledge exchange activities of the University. The Research and Enterprise Directorate works closely with University colleagues, research students and external partners to develop and strengthen the world class research base at Queen’s.

Prior to joining the University, Scott spent several years at Imperial College London managing academic research activities both within the Faculty of Medicine and at the centre of College. During his time at Imperial College, Scott also oversaw a number of high profile projects to implement research systems to support the lifecycle of research, from research development through to publication and commercialisation. Scott’s experience also includes leadership of a number of high-profile change management projects and several years developing organisational strategy. Scott has held a number of posts within research strategy and policy, working for the Medical Research Council (MRC) and for the Higher Education Funding Council for England (HEFCE), where latterly he played a key role in developing the Research Excellence Framework (REF) programme.

Scott holds an undergraduate degree in English and Geography from the University of Keele and an MBA from Imperial College London.

Visit the Research and Enterprise Directorate website.

Caroline Young, Director of Student Plus

Director of Student Plus
Caroline Young

As Director of Student Plus, Caroline leads six business units comprising of the Students' Union, Accommodation, Campus Food and Drink, Childcare, Eventus, Culture and Arts and Queen's Sport. Caroline is focused on the delivery of vibrant campus facilities which enhance, enrich and exceed the student experience and she works to lead, direct and implement strategies which ensure Queen’s campus facilities and the services offered are world class.

Caroline graduated with a BA Hons degree in Hospitality Management in 1993 and has substantial experience working in the hospitality, tourism and business sectors across Ireland and Great Britain.

Before joining Queens in 2005, Caroline was Regional Director of Sales for Hilton Hotels, responsible for the Sales and Business Development teams across 18 hotels in Scotland, Ireland and the Isle of Man.

Visit the Student Plus Directorate website.

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Heads of School

Professor Aaron Maule, Acting Head of the School of Biological SciencesProfessor Aaron Maule
Acting Head of the School of Biological Sciences

Aaron obtained a BSc in Biological Sciences at Queen’s in 1986, a PhD in Experimental Parasitology in 1989 and, after working in industry (The Upjohn Company / Pharmacia, MI, USA; 1992-95), returned to Queen’s in 1995 as a lecturer; he obtained a Chair in Molecular Parasitology in 2001.  

His research focusses on the discovery and validation of novel control (drug and vaccine) targets in parasites.  Putative chemotherapy targets are drawn from signalling systems involved in sensory and motor functions, particularly those associated with classical neurotransmitter and neuropeptide signalling.  A core facet of these efforts is the ongoing development and optimization of functional genomics platforms for key parasite species, facilitating the interrogation of genomic and transcriptomic resources for novel control targets.  A developing area encompasses the translation of in vitro RNA interference methods for both the in vivo assessment of target value and for the direct control of parasitic worms of animals and plants.  

His research has been honoured by awards of the C.A. Wright Medal (2004; British Society for Parasitology) and the Bueding von Brand Memorial Award (2008; The American Society of Parasitologists) and election to the Royal Irish Academy (2012).  

View the School of Biological Sciences website.

Christopher HardacreProfessor Christopher Hardacre
Head of the School of Chemistry and Chemical Engineering

The School of Chemistry and Chemical Engineering's primary objective is to develop ground-breaking research and educational programmes at the interfaces between chemistry, chemical engineering and allied disciplines. It has three main research areas - catalysis, materials and synthetic organic and biological chemistry. In addition, strong emphasis is placed in the area of sustainability and the environment through QUILL and QUESTOR.

Professor Chris Hardacre graduated from Gonville and Caius College at the University of Cambridge with a MA in Natural Sciences and a PhD examining surface processes in automotive catalysis and was awarded the International Institute of Precious Metals award for his graduate studies. After holding a SERC research fellowship and a junior research fellowship at Emmanuel College, Cambridge, he moved to Queen's University in 1995 as a lecturer in physical chemistry.

In 2003 he was appointed as Professor of Physical Chemistry and took on the role of Director of Research of CenTACat. In 2004 he was awarded a USAF Window on Science visiting research fellowship. Through this work in iconic liquids research, he was awarded the Royal Society of Chemistry Encouraging Innovation Award with Merck Chemicals Ltd and was part of the team to win the Queen's Anniversary Prize for Further and Higher Education. He has published over 200 peer-reviewed papers and holds six patents.

View the School of Chemistry and Chemical Engineering website.

Professor Michael Alcorn
Michael AlcornHead of the School of Creative Arts

Born in 1962, Michael Alcorn graduated with a first-class honours degree in Music from the University of Ulster and went on to complete a PhD in composition at the University of Durham.  He returned to his native Belfast in 1998 to take up a position as Composer-in-Residence at Queen’s. Since then he has held various academic positions at the University, the most recent of which was the appointment to a personal Chair in Composition in 2003. 

He founded the Sonic Arts Research Centre at Queen’s in 2001 and has been actively involved in a range of artistic events inside and outside Queen’s including the Belfast Festival, Sonorities Festival, Young at Art, and the Tyrone Guthrie Centre at Annaghmakerrig. 

View the School of Creative Arts website.

 Professor Paul Connolly
Head of the School of Education

Paul Connolly graduated from the Birmingham University in 1989 with a BSocSc (Hons) in Social Administration before then completing an MA (with distinction) in Race and Ethnic Studies (1992) at Warwick University and a PhD in Sociology of Education at Leicester University (1995). He has also completed an MSc (with distinction) in Applied Statistics with Sheffield Hallam University (2004). He arrived in Northern Ireland in 1994 to take up the post of Lecturer and then Senior Lecturer (from 2001) in Sociology at the University of Ulster. He joined Queen's in 2003 as a Reader in Education and was promoted to a Professorship in Education in 2005. He was appointed to his current role as Head of School in 2011.

Paul is recognised internationally for his research on diversity and inclusion in early childhood. He is founding Co-Director (with Professor Tony Gallagher) of Una: A Global Learning Initiative on Children and Ethnic Diversity that links together over 80 leading researchers, practitioners and policy makers across 33 different countries.

Paul also has a strong interest in evaluating the effectiveness of educational programmes and initiatives. He was Founding Director of the Centre for Effective Education that is based within the School of Education at Queen’s and is also Founding Editor of the international peer-reviewed journal Effective Education. Paul is also a member of the international Steering Committee of the Campbell Collaboration and Co-Chair of its Education Review Group. Within Queen’s, Paul has led the development of the cross-University and inter-disciplinary initiative Improving Children’s Lives.

For more information on Paul and his publications please visit:

View the School of Education website.

Professor Stan Scott

Professor Stan Scott
Head of the School of Electronics, Electronic Engineering and Computer Science

Professor Scott is a graduate of Queen’s University Belfast having been awarded a first-class (hons) degree in Mathematics in 1977 and a PhD in 1980. Following a period at the Atomic Energy Research Establishment, Harwell and the University of Ulster he was appointed to a lectureship in Computer Science at Queen’s (1985), a Senior Lectureship (1991), a Readership (1995) and a personal Chair in Computational Science (2001). Within the School of Electronics, Electrical Engineering and Computer Science he has held the positions of Director of Research for High Performance and Distributed Computing (2005-2010) and Director of Education (2010).

Professor Scott’s research interests are focused on computational science and high performance and distributed computation. He is Coordinating Principal Editor of the Elsevier journal Computer Physics Communications and is Director of its associated international software library. In 1994 he was awarded an Alexander von Humboldt Fellowship which was held at the Max-Planck Institute for Astrophysics near Munich. From 2005-07 he held a visiting professorship at the Laboratoire d’Informatique de Paris 6, Pierre and Marie Curie University in. In 2006 he was awarded the HPC Prize for Machine Utilization by the UK Research Councils’ High End Computing Strategy Committee.

View the School of Electronics, Electronic Engineering and Computer Science website.

Professor Paul Simpson
Head of the School of English

Paul Simpson came to Queen’s in 1992 from the University of Liverpool, having previously worked at the University of Nottingham. He is Chair of the international Poetics and Linguistics Association and has been Editor-in-Chief of the journal Language and Literature. He is Editor for Palgrave Macmillan’s series of monographs, Language, Style and Literature.

Professor Simpson’s books include Language, Ideology and Point of View (1993), Language through Literature (1997), On the Discourse of Satire (2003) and Language and Power (2008). The second edition of his textbook Stylistics will be published in 2014.

English Studies at Queen’s is one of the most diverse areas of study in the Humanities, embracing English Literature, English Language, as well as Creative Writing (and Broadcasting) in English. The School of English at Queen’s recently entered the top 100 English departments world-wide (according to the QS World University Rankings) and its outstanding and many-faceted research excellence was recognised in RAE 2008. The School’s international reputation is also enhanced by the work of the Seamus Heaney Centre and this ensures that the dynamic tradition of poetry at Queen's reaches a wide audience and is of benefit to students, writers in the community, and the public at large. Professor Simpson is determined to maintain his School’s standing across all of its core activities in teaching, research and outreach.

View the School of English website.

Professor Audrey Horning
Head of the School of Geography, Archaeology and Palaeoecology

‌Audrey Horning joined the School of Geography, Archaeology and Palaeoecology as Professor of Archaeology in 2011, having previously held posts at the University of Leicester and the College of William and Mary.  She is an historical archaeologist with degrees in archaeology, anthropology, and history.

Her primary research centres on comparative colonialism and the relationship between archaeology and contemporary identity, with a particular focus upon European expansion into the early modern Atlantic world(s). Her most recent book (2013), Ireland in the Virginian Sea: Colonialism in the British Atlantic draws together archaeological and documentary research from both sides of the Atlantic to consider the processes and impacts of British expansion in the period 1550-1650. Other publications (four books, 60 articles and book chapters) address future directions for historical and contemporary archaeology; ethics and public engagement, particularly in Northern Ireland; incorporation of Native American perspectives on colonial histories; the anthropology of drinking in colonial settings; late medieval Gaelic Irish rural settlement; vernacular architecture in Ireland and Virginia; and the 20th-century archaeology of Appalachia.

Major funding for her research has come from the AHRC, Leverhulme Trust, and the United States National Park Service.

View the School of Geography, Archaeology and Palaeoecology (GAP) website.

Professor Crawford Gribben, Acting Head of School of History and Anthropology

Professor Crawford Gribben
Acting Head of the School of History and Anthropology

Professor Gribben joined the School in 2013 from Trinity College Dublin; he is Professor of Early Modern British History and a specialist in the history of seventeenth-century radical Protestantism, and the history and culture of apocalyptic religious movements more generally.

View the School of History and Anthropology website.


Professor Sally Wheeler
Head of the School of Law

Sally Wheeler came to Queen's in 2004 as a Professor of Law. Prior to that she had held Chairs at the University of Leeds (where she was Head of Department from 1997-2001) and Birkbeck College.

Her main research interest is in company law, contract law and corporate governance, all of which she approaches from the standpoint of socio-legal studies. She is interested in the relationship between law, ethics and ritual in areas such as corporate social responsibility and sustainability.

Her work has been funded by the ERSC and she was a member of ESRC research grants board from 2005-2010. She was Chair of the Socio-Legal Studies Association from 2000-2011. She was on the Law Panel for a REA 2001 and the Law Sub-Panel for RAE 2008.

View the School of Law website.

Professor John Turner
Head of the Queen's University Management School

John Turner has been a Professor of Finance and Financial History at Queen’s University Belfast since 2005. He is the founder and director of the Queen’s University Centre for Economic History. He is also an active blogger – he writes a blog (, aimed at students and interested others, which centres on the past, present, and future of the economy and financial system.

Professor Turner’s research, which has been published in all the leading economic history journals, as well as economics and finance journals, is focussed on the long-run evolution and development of banking, banking crises, bubbles, corporate law, and financial markets. He has recently published a book entitled Banking in Crisis: The Rise and Fall of British Banking Stability, 1800 to the Present.

Professor Turner’s research has been funded by the British Academy, Economic and Social Research Council, and the Leverhulme Trust. He has held several distinguished visiting positions during his career - he has been a Houblon-Norman Fellow at the Bank of England and an Alfred D. Chandler Fellow at Harvard Business School.

View the Queen's University Management School website.

Professor Robert Bowman, Head of School of Mathematics and Physics

Professor Robert Bowman
Head of the School of Mathematics and Physics

Robert Bowman comes from the Isle of Mull in Scotland. He completed his PhD from Strathclyde University in 1992 and joined Queen's as a lecturer in 1994. He became Professor of Materials Physics in 2007 and from 2006-2015 was Director of the Centre for Nanostructured Media.

In 2005 he was elected Fellow (FInstP) of the Institute of Physics (IoP) and as well as chair and membership of several committees and boards was a member of the Institute's Governing Council (2009-13).

His research is directed towards the development and evaluation of advanced materials for data storage technology. Topics being investigated include; rare earth magnetism, rare-earth-ferromagnetic coupling phenomena, tailored magnetic multilayers and materials to facilitate heat assisted magnetic recording. Through this he leads the University’s strategic relationship with Seagate Technology which through ANSIN, an advanced materials hub, established in 2010, has seen an investment in excess of £10M from the company to date engaging researchers on new materials and processes for read/write heads used in data storage in support of the R&D Group at Seagate Technology's manufacturing site Springtown.

He is Director of the EPSRC Centre for Doctoral Training in Photonic Integration & Advanced Data Storage in collaboration with colleagues in physics and electronic engineering at the Univerity of Glasgow. £8.1m of support will see recruitment of cohorts of ten PhDs, each year, for the next five years. Twelve industry partners are involved initially.

He is a founder and Director of Causeway Sensors Ltd. a spin-out company specialising in nanostructured surfaces for a range of bio-sensing applications.

View the School of Mathematics and Physics website.

Professor Brian Falzon

Professor Brian Falzon
Head of the School of Mechanical and Aerospace Engineering

Brian Falzon graduated from the University of Sydney with a BSc (Physics and Pure Mathematics), a first-class honours degree in Aeronautical Engineering and a PhD in Advanced Composite Aerostructures. He joined Imperial College London as a postdoctoral research fellow in 1996, was appointed to a lectureship in 2000, a Senior Lectureship in 2005 and Reader in 2007. In 2008 Brian took up the Chair of Aerospace Engineering at Monash University where he was the Head of the Aerospace Engineering Programme, Director of Research and Deputy Head of the Department of Mechanical and Aerospace Engineering. In 2013 he joined Queen’s as the Royal Academy of Engineering – Bombardier Chair in Aerospace Composites.

Professor Falzon is a Chartered Engineer and Fellow of the Royal Aeronautical Society. He is internationally renowned for his work on advanced composite structures and in 2008 was awarded the George Taylor Prize, by the RAeS, for the best paper published on aircraft structures. In 2009 he was honoured with an Australian Leadership Award in recognition of his contribution to issues of national importance and demonstrated leadership in his field. Professor  Falzon is also co-founder of Veryan Medical Limited, a company spin-off from Imperial College London developing biomimetic-inspired helical stents.

View the School of Mechanical and Aerospace Engineering website.

Professor Stuart Elborn
Dean of the School of Medicine, Dentistry and Biomedical Sciences

Professor of Respiratory Medicine at Queen’s University and Consultant Physician in the Belfast Health and Social Care Trust, he will take up post with immediate effect. Professor Elborn founded and led the Regional Adult Cystic Fibrosis Centre in Belfast City Hospital from 1995 and was Director of the Centre for Infection and Immunity from 2010. He trained in Belfast, Nottingham and Cardiff where he developed Adult Cystic Fibrosis Centres and began his research in infection and lung disease.

View the School of Medicine, Dentistry and Biomedical Sciences website.



Professor Janice Carruthers
Head of the School of Modern Languages

Janice Carruthers is Professor of French Linguistics. She is a native of Belfast and holds a BA, MPhil and PhD from Cambridge University. Since appointment to a lectureship at Queen’s in 1989, she has held a number of leadership roles, notably as Associate Dean, Head of French and Director of Research.

Her research interests centre on the evolution of the French language, verbal tense and aspect, corpus linguistics, oral narrative and the syntactic structure of spoken French. Her books include Problems and Perspectives. Studies in the Modern French Language (2001, with Wendy Ayres-Bennett), Oral Narration in Modern French. A Linguistic Analysis of Temporal Patterns (2005) and The ‘Conte’, Oral and Written Dynamics (2010, ed. with Maeve McCusker). She is a member of the AHRC Peer Review College and is on the Editorial Board of French Studies and Legenda Research Monographs in French.

View the School of Modern Languages website.

Professor Sam Porter
Head of the School of Nursing and Midwifery

Sam Porter was appointed to the Chair of Nursing Research in the School of Nursing and Midwifery in 1999. Prior to taking up that post, he was a Lecturer and then Reader in Sociology, Queen’s University Belfast. He is a Registered Nurse, having trained in Coventry.

A Queen’s graduate, he holds a BSSc in Sociology and Social Administration, and a PhD in Sociology. His main research focus is on palliative and supportive care. His other research interest is the relationship between the arts and healthcare, and he is currently leading a major randomised controlled trial evaluating the effectiveness of music therapy on the communicative skills of emotionally disturbed children. In terms of education, he has been responsible for the development of online distance learning professional doctorates in nursing and midwifery.

View the School of Nursing and Midwifery website.

David WoolfsonProfessor David Woolfson
Head of the School of Pharmacy

The School of Pharmacy at Queen's is acknowledged as a leading centre for Pharmacy teaching and research in the UK, featuring at or near the top of league tables for the subject. Strong international links are a feature of the School's research and teaching, including its pioneering distance learning courses for qualified pharmacists.

David Woolfson, Chair in Pharmaceutics and a Queen's graduate in Pharmacy, was appointed Head of School in 2009. He is presently Chair of the British Pharmacopoeia Commission and leader of the UK Delegation to the European Pharmacopoeia Commission. He founded the McClay Research Centre for Pharmaceutical Sciences, which provides state-of-the-art facilities for the School's dynamic research programmes in the Pharmaceutical Science and Practice, and Molecular Therapeutics research clusters.

His personal research interests are in polymeric drug delivery systems for transdermal and intravaginal (HIV microbicides and vaccines) applications, bioadhesion and biomaterials.  He is a member of the Scientific Advisory Board of the International Partnership for Microbicides in Washington DC, is on the Editorial Advisory Board of CRC Books Inc. and has contributed to the development of a number of  marketed pharmaceutical products. A Director of QUBIS Ltd., he has extensive experience of technology transfer and intellectual property in the pharmaceutical sector.

View the School of Pharmacy website.

Professor Trevor Whittaker
Head of the School of Planning, Architecture and Civil Engineering

Trevor Whittaker is Professor of Coastal Engineering.  He is a native of Northern Ireland and was awarded a first call honours degree in Civil Engineering in 1976 and a PhD in 1981 on the hydrodynamics of wave power devices, both from Queen’s University.  He is a fellow of The Royal Academy of Engineering, The Royal Institution of Naval Architects, The Institute of Civil Engineers and is a chartered engineer.  He was appointed as a lecturer in 1983, Reader in 1989 and Professor in 1993 all in the Department of Civil Engineering.

Up until 2013 he was Head of the marine energy research team at Queen’s which is recognised worldwide for their pioneering work on wave power conversion. The team has supported the design, development and testing of seven prototype devises at sea, four of which have been grid connected. His team’s early work was recognised with The Royal Society ESSO Energy award in 1994. Trevor is a founder member of Aquamarine Power and a technical advisor to the company.  In addition, he is a naval architect and has designed ranges of power boats for local companies.  He specialises in design and this has been his primary interest along with coastal engineering during his teaching career.

View the School of Planning, Architecture and Civil Engineering website.

Professor David Phinnemore
Head of the School of Politics, International Studies and Philosophy

Professor David Phinnemore joined Queen's in 2000 as a Lecturer in European Integration and was promoted to Professor of European Politics in 2011. He holds a Jean Monnet Chair in European Political Science and is also a Visiting Professor at the College of Europe (Bruges, Belgium). In 2010-11, he was seconded as a senior research analyst to the Foreign and Commonwealth Office in London.
Professor Phinnemore holds a BA in European Studies (1990) and was awarded his PhD in European Studies by the University of Kent at Canterbury in 1998. His research and teaching interests cover EU treaty reform, EU enlargement and EU external relations. Among his publications are The European Union’s 2007 Enlargement (London: Routledge, 2012) (edited with Cristina Chiva), Reflections on European Integration: 50 Years of the Treaty of Rome (Basingstoke: Palgrave, 2009) (edited with Alex Warleigh-Lack), Romania and the European Union: From marginalization to membership (London: Routledge, 2008, with Dimitris Papadimitriou) as well as a range of edited volumes and published articles in Journal of Southern Europe and the Balkans, Journal of Common Market Studies, Journal of European Integration, European Foreign Affairs Review. His most recent book, Treaty of Lisbon: Origins and Negotiation, will be published by Palgrave in 2013.

View the School of Politics, International Studies and Philosophy website.

Professor Cathy Craig
Head of the School of Psychology

Professor Cathy Craig has been Head of the School of Psychology since December 2012.

The School of Psychology was established in 1958 by Professor George Seth and is now part of the Faculty of Engineering and Physical Sciences. Its purpose is to offer a world-class education portfolio that will attract students from across the globe. Staff in the School undertake innovative research in the area of Behavioural Sciences, that continually pushes the boundaries of the discipline, yet has far reaching benefits for society.

Professor Craig graduated with an MA in Psychology from the University of Edinburgh in 1993 and completed her PhD in the Perception and Action labs also in Edinburgh in 1997. Following her PhD she moved to the University of Aix-Marseille, France to take up a post-doc in the Movement and Perception lab. She was recruited as a lecturer in the Sports Science Faculty at the same university the following year. In 2005 she was appointed as a Senior Lecturer in Visual Perception at Queens and was promoted to Professor of Perception and Action Psychology in 2010.

Her main research interests focus on how sensory information is used by the brain to control movement. More specifically, she is interested in understanding how patterns of sensory information can improve movement performance in both sporting (decision making in rugby or stopping curved free kicks in soccer) and health related contexts (e.g. balance training in older adults or improving gait in people with Parkinson’s). The excellence of her research has been recognised through the award of a prestigious ERC grant. She has also created a world-leading lab to study movement (the Movement Innovation Lab) housed within the auspices of the PEC.

View the School of Psychology website.

Professor Sally Shortall

Professor Sally Shortall
Acting Head of the School of Sociology, Social Policy and Social Work

Sally Shortall is Professor of Sociology. She has researched and published on farm families, farm women, agricultural development, rural women, rural development theory and practice, community development theory and practice, governance, community and stakeholder engagement in policy processes, and how evidence is used to inform policy. She has worked as an adviser for government, the Food Standards Agency, the European Parliament, the FA, the European Commission and the OECD. She is currently President of the European Society for Rural Sociology.

View the School of Sociology, Social Policy and Social Work website.