News and Views

Leading scientist appointed to spearhead research and innovation at UCC

10 Mar 2021
World-leading scientist Professor John Cryan, who is among the top one percent most-cited researchers across the globe, has been appointed Vice-President for Research and Innovation at University College Cork. Photo credit: Clare Keogh

One of the world's leading scientists has been appointed to spearhead research and innovation at University College Cork.

Professor John F. Cryan, a neuroscientist who is recognised as a global leader in the study of gut-brain interactions, will assume the position of Vice President for Research & Innovation at UCC, having been selected after a competitive process.

Prof. Cryan’s ground-breaking discoveries on microbiome-brain interactions have led to fundamental changes in understandings in both the neuroscience and psychiatry fields. Through his research in the APC Microbiome Ireland SFI Research Centre at UCC, Prof. Cryan was recently listed as among the world’s top one percent of most-cited researchers, for the fifth time.

Prof. Cryan has earned in excess of €23 million in research funding, published over 550 peer reviewed publications across a range of high-profile journals, and has been cited over 62,000 times throughout a distinguished career in both industry and academia. Prof. Cryan has trained more than 40 PhD students, is a member of the Royal Irish Academy, and has received an Honorary Doctorate from University of Antwerp, Belgium.
UCC is recognised as Ireland's leading university for research and industry engagement, and in his new role Prof. Cryan will shape the future research and innovation direction of the university.
Speaking on his appointment, Prof. Cryan said:
“The goal is to grow our research reputation coupled with increases in funding, patents and industry engagement over the next years. Now more than ever the value of research is being recognised both by the public and policymakers, but it takes investment. I’m reminded of the inspirational Mary Lasker who said “If you think research is expensive, try disease!"
“I am passionate about the role that the humanities and social sciences can have in such efforts and there are huge opportunities in this regard for UCC, as we strive for a campus of Creativity, Curiosity & Critical Thinking that will enable a more just and inclusive future for all,” he said.
Interim President of UCC, Prof. John O’Halloran, said:
"I am delighted to welcome the appointment of Prof. Cryan as Vice President for Research and Innovation at this time.  I look forward to working with him to further our research standing and impact at UCC.
"As an internationally recognised research scientist, Prof. Cryan brings a truly global experience in research excellence, publication, leadership, and communication to this role. He has a proven track record of international research collaboration as well as leadership in research, and has played a key role in driving the culture of research excellence at UCC.
"He also has an extraordinary talent of connecting to other disciplines beyond his own domain and will accelerate the delivery of a connected university. The last year has been a time of significant change and I have no doubt that his energy and dynamism will be of great benefit to our students and staff and will drive transformation and growth at UCC in a complex global landscape," Prof. O'Halloran said.
"I also take this opportunity to express my sincere thanks, and that of the University, to Prof. Anita Maguire who held the post as Vice President for Research and Innovation for the past 10 years.  Professor Maguire has worked tirelessly providing tremendous contributions to the University as a member of the University Management Team. I know that everyone at UCC will join me in wishing Professor Maguire the very best in the next phase of her academic scholarship activities, while welcoming Prof. Cryan to his new role," he said.

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