Professor Douglas Paul from the University of Glasgow receives IOP President’s Medal.

21 October 2014

Douglas Paul was awarded the President’s Medal at the IOP awards dinner on 15 October, in recognition of his achievements in translating physics research into advanced technology.

Professor Douglas Paul

The IOP's president has the opportunity to choose the winner of the President's Medal once during their term in office, and Frances Saunders had chosen Prof. Douglas J Paul, Professor of Semiconductor Devices at the University of Glasgow and director of the James Watt Nanofabrication Centre. "This is actually a rare opportunity for me to highlight something that I am really passionate about and to celebrate someone who is working at the forefront of something that I think is really important," she said, which was enabling or translational research.

"Developing processing technologies, device fabrication techniques, instrumentation and the like, is not always the glamorous end of physics research; it can go unseen and unsung yet it is absolutely critical to translating the latest thinking in physics into something concrete that can benefit the economy and society."

Prof. Paul had already delivered stunning research results, enabling the prototyping and development of proof-of-concept devices in areas such as nano-electronics quantum laser technologies and energy harvesting techniques, she said. He had provided leadership to teams of researchers working in device fabrication technologies and had also had impact on government policy as an adviser to bodies such as the Cabinet Office High Impact Threats Expert Group and Scientific Expert Group for Emergencies (SAGE), and the Defence Science Advisory Committee. Prof. Paul then briefly addressed the audience.

The medal is awarded on the recommendation of the President and agreed by Council. It can be given to both physicists and non-physicists who have provided meritorious services in various fields of endeavour which were of benefit to physics in general and the Institute in particular. The first award was made in 1998. Past recipients include particle physicist and broadcaster Professor Brian Cox in 2012 and Sir Timothy Berners-Lee, inventor of the World Wide Web, in 2006.

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