Professor Sir Keith Burnett is President & Vice-Chancellor at the University of Sheffield. He is also member of the UK Prime Minister’s Council of Science and Technology and has offered independent advice to government on issues such as its review of postgraduate education.
He has also been appointed to the Infrastructure Council which advises the Treasury on major investments totalling up to £200 billion over five years, including on energy, transport, waste, flood, science, water and telecoms. In September 2016, Professor Sir Keith Burnett was named the new President of the UK’s Science Council, which brings together professional scientists from academia and industry, and also represents scientific technicians and science teachers.
Sir Keith is a member of Universities UK, Yorkshire Universities and the Russell Group. He Chairs the White Rose group of Yorkshire research-led universities and led the N8 Group of Northern research-intensive universities. He is Director of Sheffield University Enterprises Limited and Chairs the Sheffield City Region Science and Innovation Board which guides regional strategy, particularly in areas of advanced manufacturing. He is also a Director of Graduate Prospects Ltd, the Higher Education Careers Service Unit and a member of the Science and Technology Facilities Council.
In addition to his work as a scientist and leader within Higher Education, Sir Keith has become increasingly well-known as a commentator on the economy and wider society, in particular in relation to international collaboration. Having lived and worked in the US, he is also a speaker of Chinese and advises the Chinese government on the teaching of language and culture. He was awarded an individual excellence award from China in acknowledgement of this contribution. His commitment to global education is seen in the #WeAreInternational campaign which he cofounded with students and which is now supported by over 100 universities and the CBI. He is also a Director the Worldwide Universities Network.
Sir Keith received a CBE for contributions to the scientific community in 2004 and was elected a Fellow of the Royal Society in 2001. He was awarded a knighthood in the 2013 New Year’s honours list for services to science and higher education.