Jessie Kennedy

Jessie Kennedy

Prof Jessie Kennedy

Dean, Research & Innovation

Biography

Professor Jessie Kennedy is Dean of Research & Innovation at Edinburgh Napier University.

Appointed in January 2015, Jessie's first degree was in Biology, followed by an MPhil in Computing, which led to a research assistant post in medical computing at the University of Edinburgh in 1983.

She joined Edinburgh Napier University in 1986 as a lecturer, was promoted to Senior Lecturer in 1992, Reader in 1995, and Professor in 2000. Thereafter she held the post of Director of the Institute for Informatics and Digital Innovation from 2010-14.

Jessie has published widely, with over 100 peer-reviewed publications and over £2 million in research funding from a range of bodies, including EPSRC, BBSRC, National Science Foundation, and KTP, and has had 13 PhD students complete.

She has been programme chair, programme committee member and organiser of many international conferences, a reviewer and panel member for many national and international computer science funding bodies, and became a Member of EPSRC Peer Review College in 1996 and a Fellow of the British Computer Society.

Jessie has a long-standing record of contribution to inter-disciplinary research, working to further biological research through the application of novel computing technology.

Her research in the areas of user interfaces to databases and data visualisation in biology contributed to the establishment of the field of biological visualisation, where she is a recognised international leader.

Jessie hosted the first biological visualisation workshop at the Royal Society of Edinburgh, was an invited speaker at a BBSRC workshop on Challenges in Biological Visualisation, was a founding member of the International Symposium in Biological Visualisation - being Programme Chair in 2011, General Chair in 2012 and 2013 - and steering committee member since 2014.

She has been keynote speaker at related international conferences and workshops, such as VIZBI, the International Visualisation conference and BioIT World, and is currently leading a BBSRC network on biological visualisation.

Her research in collaboration with taxonomists at the Royal Botanic Gardens, Edinburgh, produced a data model for representing differing taxonomic opinions in Linnaean classification.

This work led to collaboration on a large USA-funded project with ecologists from six US universities and resulted in a data standard for the exchange biodiversity data that has been adopted by major global taxonomic and biodiversity organisations.