KAUST appoints Stefan Catsicas as University Provost


Catsicas Professor Stefan Catsicas has recently been appointed the University's Provost and Executive Vice President for Academic Affairs and will assume his position in January 2011.

Professor Catsicas received his Ph.D. in Neurosciences from the University of Lausanne in Switzerland in 1987. After his doctoral studies, he undertook postdoctoral research at the Research Institute of Scripps Clinic, San Diego, USA.

Professor Catsicas was head of Neurobiology at the Glaxo Institute for Molecular Biology in Geneva before joining the University of Lausanne's School of Medicine as Professor and Chairman of Cellular Biology. In 2000, he was appointed Vice President, Research Director and Professor of Cellular Engineering at the Swiss Federal Institute of Technology, Lausanne (EPFL). Five years later, he decided to become an independent entrepreneur and since then co-founded innovation driven technology spin offs from leading universities around the world. Throughout his career, he has advised leading investment funds and large pharmaceutical companies in Europe and in the United States.

Professor Catsicas' scientific interests are centered on neuronal development and cell death with a focus on protein biophysics. His work has contributed to a better understanding of neuronal plasticity and of its possible role in neurodegenerative diseases.

Among Professor Catsicas' many accomplishments in academic governance are the merging of three institutes at the University of Lausanne's School of Medicine to focus on basic and clinically relevant neurosciences. At EPFL he was instrumental in restructuring the Swiss university into five schools and interdisciplinary centers. Professor Catsicas helped recruit the Deans for the schools as well as more than 60 senior and tenure track faculty. He also played a key role in designing EPFL's new technology transfer policy.

Welcoming Professor Catsicas and his family to the university, KAUST President Professor Choon Fong Shih said, "I am sure we all look forward to getting to know Professor Catsicas and working with him as he leads the academic sector towards realizing our collective aspirations for KAUST as a globally renowned research university."