Edward Seidel

Vice President for Economic Development and Innovation, University of Illinois System

U of I System Vice President for Economic Development and Innovation Edward Seidel oversees the development of Discovery Partners Institute and the Illinois Innovation Network, as well as the entire economic development portfolio for the university system. He led the initial planning effort for DPI and IIN, and served as DPI's interim director from its inception until Bill Sanders was identified to lead the DPI.

Seidel is an award-winning researcher with a long record of leadership experience that includes three years as director of the National Center for Supercomputing Applications in Urbana-Champaign, 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.  He is also a Founder Professor in the Department of Physics and a professor in the Departments of Astronomy and Computer Science, and at the Institute for Sustainability, Energy, and Environment (iSEE) at Urbana-Champaign.

Prior to returning to the University of Illinois, Seidel served as the senior vice president for research and innovation for the MIT Skoltech Initiative 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.  He also led the Center for Computation and Technology at Louisiana State University and directed the numerical relativity group at the Max Planck Institute for Gravitational Physics (Albert Einstein Institute) in Germany.

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 earned a number of awards, including the 2006 IEEE Sidney Fernbach Award, the Association for Computing Machinery’s Gordon Bell prize, and the Heinz Billing Prize of the Max Planck Society. 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.