Professor Hywel Williams
The CDT Director is Professor Hywel Williams, a computational scientist focused on problems that link social processes and environmental change. He is a faculty member in Computer Science, and affiliated to the Institute for Data Science & Artificial Intelligence and the Global Systems Institute at the University of Exeter. He is a Fellow of the Alan Turing Institute, the UK's premier facility for artificial intelligence and data science.
In addition to his leadership role in the CDT in Environmental Intelligence, Hywel leads the SEDAlab, an active research group of postdoctoral fellows and PhD students, with diverse interests in computational social science and environmental data analysis. He is former Programme Lead for MSc Data Science and related programmes. He teaches courses and supervises student projects in data science and social network analysis. He has published >60 research papers in leading outlets and his research has been funded by EPSRC, ESRC, NERC, HEFCE, Leverhulme Trust and several commercial sponsors, amongst others.
I joined the Business school in 2016 as Senior Lecturer in Management. I'm an interdisciplinary social scientist working closely with natural scientists, engineers, regulators and policy-makers. My research and teaching revolves around the responsible governance of science, technology and innovation . I employ qualitative methods to understand the governance of cutting edge emerging technologies, particularly the biotechnologies including GM insects, gene drive, and genome-editing. much of my focus in recent years has been on risk assessment and responsible research and innovation at a policy and institutional level. i have advised the House of Lords Select Committee on Science and Technology on GM insects, the Nuffield Council on Bioethics on genome-editing, and the Biotechnology and Biological Sciences Research Council on stakeholder engagement.
I have a PhD in Politics and Environmental Studies with a specialisation in Public Policy from the University of Toronto 2005., an MSc (distinction) in European Social Policy Analysis and a BSc (first class) in Environmental Management and Policy. After My PhD, I took up a professional position at Genome British Columbia, a Canadian funding agency where I established an interdisciplinary social science research programme in genomics and engaged policy-makers, industry and other stakeholders to explore the role of genomics in addressing societal challenges.
In 2021/22, I’m a Visiting Professor at the Institute for Resources, Environment and Sustainability (IRES), University of British Columbia in Vancouver.
I am a mathematician, a statistician and an epidemiologist. My main research interest is in those infectious diseases carried by mosquitoes, such as malaria and dengue fever. I use mathematical models to try to understand how these diseases spread, and I am particularly interested in the mosquito stages of the pathogen life cycle.
I also have a background in statistical methods, and I am interested in developing methods and software for performing computational inference. I am part of the development team, based mainly at Oxford, which maintains PINTS -- an open-course Python package for performing statistical inference.