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Bristol engineers elected as Fellows of the Royal Academy of Engineering

Dimitra Simeonidou

Professor Dimitra Simeonidou

Julia Paulson

Professor Jonathan Cooper

Press release issued: 30 September 2019

Professors Dimitra Simeonidou and Jonathan Cooper from the University of Bristol’s Faculty of Engineering have been elected as Fellows of the Royal Academy of Engineering in recognition of their outstanding and continuing contributions to the profession.

Professor Simeonidou, Director of Smart Internet Lab, co-Director of Bristol Digital Futures Institute and member of the Cabot Institute for the Environment, is an expert in Telecommunications Networks and advancing the fields of Optical, Data Centre and 5G networks. She is the first woman at Bristol to be awarded a Royal Academy of Engineering fellowship.

In 2016, she received the prestigious Royal Society Wolfson Research Merit Award for her ‘novel vision for future cities through digital infrastructure programmability’. 

She was instrumental to enable the UK to lead on 5G deployments involving sectors such as culture/creative, public safety, transport, tourism. Along with co-founding one of the UK’s prominent start-ups specialising in software platforms for smart infrastructures - Zeeta Networks.

Professor Simeonidou said: “I am thrilled to be recognised with this Fellowship and to be joining an organisation that promotes engineering innovation excellence that benefits all. Yet the research that I lead would not be possible without my brilliant research team and academic colleagues within the High-Performance Networks group. This recognition is a mark of their world-leading research in Telecommunication’s’ Networks. Engineers at University of Bristol are proving that the UK can be a driving force in the development of Future Internet technologies.”

Professor Cooper, Professor of Aerospace Engineering, is an expert in the fields of aeroelasticity and structural dynamics. He engages closely with industry, his Chair is sponsored by Airbus, developing technical solutions for the aerospace sector that enable fuel-efficient and environmentally friendly aircraft designs through the exploitation of fluid-structure interactions.

Jonathan is currently the President of the Royal Aeronautical Society, leading initiatives on facilitating the technologies needed to develop the 21st century aerospace industry and attracting more school children into engineering. He is also a Fellow of the Royal Aeronautical Society and the American Institute of Aeronautics and Astronautics.

Professor Cooper, said: “I am incredibly honoured to be elected as a Fellow of the Royal Academy of Engineering and to join such an esteemed group drawn from across all engineering disciplines.

“I look forward to continuing my work on the development of wing designs to further reduce the environmental impact of future aircraft. Thanks must go to all of the researchers that I have supervised during my time in academia.”

Both Bristol professors will join the Academy alongside five-time Formula One World Champion Lewis Hamilton who has also been admitted to the Academy as an Honorary Fellow in recognition of his role in inspiring interest in engineering, especially among young people. 

Professor Dame Ann Dowling, President of the Royal Academy of Engineering, added: “Our Fellows are at the heart of all Academy activities and I am delighted to welcome these highly successful, creative and inspiring engineering leaders to the Fellowship.

“There has never been a more important time for the Academy to advance and promote excellence in engineering so that the engineering profession can continue to contribute to societal wellbeing and economic growth.”

Further information

Royal Academy of Engineering

As the UK’s national academy for engineering and technology, we bring together the most successful and talented engineers from academia and business – our Fellows – to advance and promote excellence in engineering for the benefit of society.

We harness their experience and expertise to provide independent advice to government, to deliver programmes that help exceptional engineering researchers and innovators realise their potential, to engage the public with engineering and to provide leadership for the profession. 

We have three strategic priorities:

  • Make the UK the leading nation for engineering innovation and businesses
  • Address the engineering skills and diversity challenge
  • Position engineering at the heart of society

We bring together engineers, policy makers, entrepreneurs, business leaders, academics, educators and the public in pursuit of these goals.

Engineering is a global profession, so we work with partners across the world to advance engineering’s contribution to society on an international, as well as a national scale.

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