EPSRC appoints Director of Research Computing

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Professor Mark Parsons

Professor Mark Parsons

The Engineering and Physical Sciences Research Council (EPSRC) has appointed Professor Mark Parsons as Director of Research Computing.

Professor Parsons, who is Director of the Edinburgh Parallel Computing Centre (EPCC) and Associate Dean for e-Research at the University of Edinburgh, brings a deep knowledge of research computing in the UK and Europe to this new role.

In his role he will bring expertise in the needs of the EPSRC community into the council’s research computing portfolio and work closely with the UKRI Director of e-infrastructure, to coordinate EPSRC’s contribution to the development of the e-infrastructure section of the ‘UK’s research and innovation infrastructure: opportunities to grow our capability’ report.

Professor Parsons, who will take up the role on 1 February, said: “The UK has a global reputation as a leader in scientific and industrial research, and much of this work relies on the world-class research computing and data analysis capabilities that UKRI provides.

“My new role as Director of Research Computing will focus on building on the excellent resources we have today within EPSRC, ensuring that future investments in such services meet the needs of our many users and that they also fit within the emerging UKRI e-Infrastructure landscape.

“This is a key period in the development of research computing and I look forward to contributing to its support for the key scientific and industrial research that EPSRC supports.”

The UK’s research e-infrastructure is a fundamental component of EPSRC’s research infrastructure; many research projects in the physical sciences would be impossible without it.

The EPSRC community also delivers many of the core components of the UK’s e-Infrastructure including High Performance Computing and Quantum Computing resources, and Research Software Engineering expertise.

Professor Parsons holds a Personal Chair in High Performance Computing at the University of Edinburgh and has been Director of EPCC, the University of Edinburgh’s supercomputing centre, since 2016. EPCC hosts many of the UK’s National HPC systems including EPSRC’s ARCHER service. He has held the post of Associate Dean for e-Research in the College of Science and Engineering since 2010.

Professor Parsons joined EPCC following his PhD at CERN in 1994 to work as a software developer. For most of his career he has been in charge of EPCC’s commercial activities and is well known for his work introducing companies from across Europe to HPC for the first time. He has led the UK’s engagement in the PRACE European e-Infrastructure implementation projects for many years.