• Arup and the Royal Academy of Engineering co-sponsor new Research Chair in Transitional Energy Strategies at the University of Cambridge

  • Arup Director, John Miles, takes inaugural role as Chair

(London) Arup, the Royal Academy of Engineering and the University of Cambridge have joined forces to create new energy research post, reflecting growing interest in how society can build toward a lower carbon future while supporting sustainable economic growth.

Arup Director, John Miles, will leave his current post to take up the inaugural role as Arup/Royal Academy of Engineering Research Professor in Transitional Energy Strategies at Cambridge University from January 2012.

Professor Miles aims to use the post to explore the development of affordable, low carbon energy technologies and business models.

Professor Miles, said, “It is a great honour to take up this position at Cambridge University. I hope our research will help to inspire some of the creative thinking that will be needed to open up real business opportunities for those engaged in leading the transition from our current carbon-intensive economy to a healthier, cleaner, lower carbon future.”

Professor Dame Ann Dowling, Head of the Department of Engineering at the University of Cambridge, welcomed the announcement, saying, “Professor Miles’ research will put a sharp focus on the practicalities of making the transition from conventional power to a lower carbon future. His new chair is a perfect fit with the Engineering Department's strategic theme, ‘Energy, Transport and Urban Infrastructure’, and the wider drive for energy solutions across the whole University.”

Robert Barrett, Head of Research Programmes at the Royal Academy of Engineering, added, “We are delighted to co-sponsor this research chair with Arup. The Royal Academy of Engineering is committed to promoting the highest quality research into the key issues we face as a society and this post will do much to aid our understanding of the opportunities and challenges that lie ahead.”

Recent developments in both Brussels and Durban have underlined the global challenges involved in restoring the global economy to health and reducing the threat of global climate change. Affordable, low-carbon energy technologies will play a critical role in developing long-term solutions, which is why Arup and the Royal Academy of Engineering have been so keen to support the new Research Chair at the University of Cambridge.

Notes for editors

1. John Miles has built up 32 years of experience during his career with Arup, focusing on energy, resources and industry matters. He has been particularly active in the area of low carbon vehicles and energy storage technologies, as well as sitting on the Group Board for 17 years.

2. At Arup, John Miles has most recently been involved with the successful development and subsequent sale of HaloIPT electric vehicle charging technology as Executive Chairman of the company. John has also been a leading commentator in the debate around Peak Oil.

3. During his time at Arup, John Miles also acted in a number of external roles, including serving as a commissioner for the UK Commission for Architecture in the Built Environment (CABE), a Director of the UK Housing Forum, a Director of the Construction Industry Research and Information Association (CIRIA), a member of the UK Automotive Council, and a member of the UK Energy Research Partnership.

4. The new Research Chair in Transitional Energy Strategies is being co-sponsored and funded by Arup and the Royal Academy of Engineering with support from the University of Cambridge. No further financial details are being released at this time.

5. The Department of Engineering is the largest Department in the University of Cambridge and one of the leading centres for engineering research anywhere in the world. In total, it has about 620 staff, 600 research students and more than 1,000 undergraduates. Its research programme addresses some of the biggest challenges in science and technology and its academics are involved in a wide-ranging network of partnerships and collaborations with other researchers, companies and entrepreneurs. This means that Cambridge engineering research regularly plays a major role in providing solutions to environmental, social and economic challenges. The last Research Assessment Exercise showed that it is best general engineering department in the UK by a significant margin and, according to the QS World University Rankings Scorecard, the best in the world.

About the University of Cambridge
Cambridge University is one of the world's oldest universities and leading academic centres, and a self-governed community of scholars. Cambridge comprises 31 Colleges and over 150 departments, faculties, schools and other institutions.

About the Royal Academy of Engineering
As the UK’s national academy for engineering, the RAEng is committed to advance and promote excellence in engineering. The Academy provides analysis and policy support to promote the UK’s role as a great place from which to do business. The organisation also takes a lead on engineering education and invests in the UK’s world class research base to underpin innovation, as well as working to improve public awareness and understanding of engineering.

About Arup
Arup is the creative force at the heart of many of the world’s most prominent projects in the built environment and across industry. From 90 offices in 35 countries our 10,000 planners, designers, engineers and consultants deliver innovative projects across the world.

For more information please contact

Cambridge University
Tom Kirk
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The Royal Academy of Engineering
Ed Holmes
Tel. +44 207 766 0655; email: Ed Holmes

Beth Hurran
Tel. +44 20 7755 5403; email: Beth Hurran

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