New director general to take helm of Science Foundation Ireland

9 Jan 2012

Prof Mark Ferguson, the new director general of SFI

Prof Mark Ferguson, a leading academic and successful entrepreneur, has been appointed as the new director general of Science Foundation Ireland.

Ferguson was appointed professor in life sciences at the University of Manchester in 1984, at the age of just 28. He is current honorary professor of life sciences at the university.

His research interests include cellular and molecular mechanisms in scarring and wound healing, developmental mechanisms in normal and cleft palate formation, alligator and crocodile biology. He discovered scar-free embryonic wound healing and temperature-dependent sex determination in alligators and crocodiles.

Ferguson is the recipient of numerous international awards, prizes, medals and honours for his research.

An exciting time for science

“We live in exciting times for science, where endeavour and ingenuity are making a notable impact on the world around us. Through determination, sustained investment and the convergence of expertise across scientific, engineering and commercial disciplines, Ireland has leaped up the international rankings for its quality of research output.

“I am relishing the opportunity of working closely with SFI’s board, staff, esteemed research community, commercial and other partners, to help continue this level of progress and influence. I am passionate about science, its commercial exploitation and its societal and economic benefits.”

John Kennedy is a journalist who served as editor of Silicon Republic for 17 years