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Durham University

Durham Energy Institute

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Durham Energy Institute appoints Alan Lowdon as Professor in Practice

(15 September 2020)

Durham Energy Institute is delighted to announce the appointment of Professor Alan Lowdon as Professor in Practice. Alan is a Durham University Alumnus, and has a distinguished track record in the energy and water sectors as well as an extensive international network of contacts.

Professors in Practice is an initiative of Durham University to recognise the expertise, experience and commitment of senior members of the practitioner community who bring public distinction and practical insight, to enhance the educational opportunities of students at Durham University. Professors in Practice also provide unique connections for Durham University’s research and scholarship to increase its engagement with policy and practice. 

Through this role Alan Lowdon will assist DEI to increase our networks, enhance our research and industry impact, and provide support to our students and researchers. 

The appointment of Alan Lowdon as Professor in Practice builds on his existing role as Chair of the Durham Energy Institute (DEI) Advisory Board.

Alan has over 30 years' experience of the international energy and water sectors having worked in major corporations such as NEI/Rolls Royce Industrial Power, PB Power, British Gas, Suez Lyonnaise des Eaux, Shell, Mott MacDonald and Sinclair Knight Merz. In addition, Alan has also held the position of Managing Director for two university spin-out companies, and also spent 4 years as Director of R&D Programmes for ITI Energy, Aberdeen where he was responsible for the identification, development and commercialisation of a £35M portfolio of energy technology investments. Alan was also previously Director of Technology & Innovation at Narec (now the Offshore Renewable Energy Catapult) where he was principally involved in research and technology development and IP commercialisation within the wind and marine renewables sectors, offshore wind in particular.

Prof. Alan Lowdon said:

“It’s real privilege to be appointed DEI’s first Professor in Practice. The Institute is going through an exciting period of change. My aim is to use my PiP role to provide additional capacity to help DEI establish itself as an energy institute of global significance. Watch this space!”

Alan has also identified 10 key objectives he would like to achieve during his time as Professor in Practice at Durham Energy Institute:

1. Contributing to the research agenda and partnerships in offshore wind.

2. Provide ‘industrial supervision’ of Masters and PhD students.

3. Mentor students and create employment connectivity.

4. Contribute to teaching at undergraduate and postgraduate levels.

5. Create international academic connectivity for mutual benefits, in particular with global players such as University of Colorado (Boulder), Colorado School of Mines, Tufts University, University of Massachusetts, MIT and National University of Singapore. 

6. Provide international industrial connectivity in the offshore wind space with developers and supply chain members.

7. Represent DEI on the board of NOF.

8. Be an ambassador for Durham University and DEI via his extensive contact networks.

9. Provide additional senior leadership capacity within DEI to assist DEI Executive, as required. 

10. Create connectivity and provide support to energy-related start-ups arriving in the North East of England or being spun out of Durham University.

Further Information: 

Read an interview with Alan Lowdon in the DEI Review Magazine from when he began his role as Chair of the DEI Advisory Board in 2015.

View our whole series of DEI Magazine issues with updates on our Research, Activities, Partnerships and Events www.durham.ac.uk/dei/resources/magazine/