vice-chancellor at University Management and Management Council, Vice-Chancellor
Professor Eva Åkesson, Vice-Chancellor of Uppsala University from January 1, 2012.
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Eva Åkesson is a professor of chemical physics. After undergraduate and doctoral studies at Umeå University, she did a postdoc at the University of Minnesota, USA. She was selected by the Swedish Research Council as senior researcher in the field of photochemical reaction mechanisms in 1996.
In 1996 Eva Åkesson joined the staff of Lund University, where she taught, conducted research and served as director of studies. In 2005 she attained the Excellent Teaching Practitioner (ETP) grade at the Faculty of Natural Sciences. From 2003 to 2008 she was Pro Vice-Chancellor of Lund University, with special responsibility for undergraduate education and the Bologna Process. From 2009 to 2011 she was Deputy Vice-Chancellor of Lund University, with special responsibility for first and second cycle studies, quality assurance and enhancement, and related internationalisation issues. She took office as Vice-Chancellor of Uppsala University on 1 January 2012.
Eva Åkesson has primarily pursued research in femtochemistry – a field that makes use of ultrafast spectroscopy to follow chemical reactions and dynamics on the timescale on which chemical bonds are formed and broken. She has studied isomerisations, dissociation reactions and electron transfers. Her research has also addressed energy conversion in artificial systems for solar cells. A special interest in her research has been the study of various ways in which the surroundings (solvents) can influence and change these reactions and dynamics.
Eva Åkesson has served on numerous boards, including the boards of CSN (the Central Board for Student Aid), Kristianstad University College, SI (the Swedish Institute) and the National Committee for Chemistry. She has served as titular member, secretary and deputy chair of the IUPAC Committee on Chemistry Education. She chaired the international expert panels for evaluating leadership and governance of education at Helsinki University in 2008 and Aalto School of Science in 2011. She is a member of the Council of the University of Tartu, the Scientific Advisory Board of Tübingen University and the Rectors’ Advisory Group of the Coimbra Group of Universities. She is a former chair of the Matariki Network of Universities and the Southern African–Nordic Centre (SANORD) and is currently vice-chair of the Guild of European Research-Intensive Universities.
In 2015 she received an honorary doctorate from the University of Edinburgh. In 2018 she was awarded H.M. The King’s Medal of the 12th size with the ribbon of the Order of the Seraphim for “exemplary work in Swedish higher education” and in 2019 she received the Skytte Medal of the University of Tartu in recognition of her contributions to international cooperation.
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