Since his appointment as the ADVP – Academic Leadership in August 2021, Prof O’Donovan works closely with the Provost and Vice Principal to develop and lead plans in line with ‘Strategy 2025’ – that articulates how the University should continue increasing its global presence and impact through its campuses and partnerships and by focusing on its strengths in research, teaching and learning.
In his role as the Head of the School of Engineering and Physical Sciences, Prof O’Donovan is responsible for introducing, planning and delivering undergraduate degree programmes in Mechanical, Chemical, Electrical and Electronic, Automotive and Energy Engineering, as well as postgraduate degree programmes in Energy, Renewable Energy Engineering, Global Sustainability Engineering and Advance Mechanical Engineering.
Prior to joining Heriot-Watt’s Dubai campus, Prof O’Donovan was an Associate Professor of Mechanical Engineering at the Edinburgh campus. He has been in academia for a total of 16 years now.
Prof O’Donovan has a research background in thermal science focusing on solar energy conversion, systems design optimisation and integration and storage technology. He has established collaborative links with industry and employs a techno-economic approach to support various renewable energy companies.
To date, Prof O’Donovan has published more than 80 research papers in peer reviewed conferences and high impact factor journals. He has an established record of teaching innovation, and his innovative teaching practices have earned him the prestigious Graduates’ Teaching Award in 2013 and 2017.