N8 appoints Koen Lamberts, Vice Chancellor of the University of York, as Chair of Board of Directors


Professor Koen Lamberts, Vice Chancellor of the University of York will take over from Sir Alan Langlands as Chair of the N8 Board of Directors.


His responsibilities as Chair include the oversight of strategic research collaborations with business and public sector research users, as N8 continues to build innovation communities for economic growth across the North of England.

Professor Lamberts commented:

“I am thrilled to take up the role of Chair of the N8 Board of Directors. Under Sir Alan’s outstanding leadership over the last two years, the partnership has made excellent progress. I aim to build on this and enhance our growing reputation with further innovative research programmes and economic engagement.”

Sir Alan Langlands said:

“Koen Lamberts is an extremely talented university leader with a commitment to research excellence and knowledge exchange. He will be an excellent chair for N8 who will play a key role in moving collaborative research in the North of England forward at pace.”


Koen Lamberts web edit
Photo: Kippa Matthews


In his new role, Professor Lamberts will ensure strategic engagement with Government officials, industry, research funders and other stakeholders, working closely with the Vice-Chancellors and Pro Vice-Chancellors of Research of the other N8 universities, as well as N8 Director Peter Simpson.

He said:

“Universities have a vital role to play in ensuring that the Northern Powerhouse concept is developed and translated into lasting economic benefit. The combined turnover of the N8 universities is around £4 billion.

“Our research strengths in agri-food, bioeconomy, digital creativity and life sciences, allied to the development of collaborations with business and industry, are producing innovative thinking, creating new jobs and contributing to tackling issues ranging from climate change and food security to urban transformation and the search for new medicines.

“The N8 recently published its strategy for the next four years which outlines our plans to help advance the North of England’s research capabilities. N8 is playing a central role in fostering existing partnerships and developing new partnerships linking academic innovation with society and industry, such as its Innovation Hub for Anti-Microbial Surfaces.

“Across the eight research intensive universities of N8, we are establishing exciting research programmes of national and international prominence, and helping to drive economic growth.”


Koen Lamberts was Professor of Cognitive Science at the University of Warwick from 2000 to 2013 where he served as Faculty Chair for Science, Pro-Vice-Chancellor for Research (Science & Medicine) and Deputy Vice-Chancellor and Provost. He became Vice-Chancellor of the University of York in 2014.

He has a record of experimental research into cognitive processes in perception, memory and decision making, and of mathematical and computational modelling of these processes. He has collaborated with commercial and industrial partners in applied research that has focused on consumer behavior and product design.