Meet the Vice President

Edward Seidel is the Interim Vice President for Research for the University of Illinois System. Seidel serves as the senior research officer of the nearly $1 billion annual sponsored research portfolio and oversees technology commercialization and economic development activities across the System’s three universities (Urbana-Champaign, Chicago, Springfield). The Office of the Vice President for Research is responsible for advancing the economic development mission of the University of Illinois by elevating ideas and innovations into sustainable technologies and businesses.

Dr. Seidel is a distinguished researcher in high-performance computing and relativity and astrophysics with an outstanding track record as an administrator. He is the director of the National Center for Supercomputing Applications (NCSA), a hub of transdisciplinary research and digital scholarship on the Urbana-Champaign campus. He is also a Founder Professor in the University of Illinois’ Department of Physics and a professor in the Department of Astronomy.

Prior to returning to the University of Illinois, Seidel served as the senior vice president for research and innovation at the Skolkovo Institute of Science and Technology in Moscow. Previously, he directed the Office of Cyberinfrastructure and served as assistant director for Mathematical and Physical Sciences at the U.S. National Science Foundation, and led the Center for Computation and Technology at Louisiana State University. He also led the numerical relativity group at the Max Planck Institute for Gravitational Physics (Albert Einstein Institute) in Germany, and before that he was a senior research scientist leading the numerical relativity group at NCSA where he was among the original co-principal investigators for Blue Waters, a federally funded project that brought one of the world’s most powerful supercomputers to Urbana-Champaign.

Seidel is a fellow of the American Physical Society and of the American Association for the Advancement of Science, as well as a member of the Institute of Electrical and Electronics Engineers (IEEE) and the Society for Industrial and Applied Mathematics. His research has been recognized by a number of awards, including the 2006 IEEE Sidney Fernbach Award, the 2001 Gordon Bell prize, and the 1998 Heinz-Billing Award. He received his PhD in relativistic astrophysics from Yale University, earned a master’s degree in physics at the University of Pennsylvania, and received a bachelor’s degree in mathematics and physics from the College of William and Mary.