Professor Richard Williams is an academic leader, engineer and entrepreneur. He was appointed Principal and Vice Chancellor at Heriot-Watt University in 2015, after Pro-Vice Chancellor and Head of Department roles at University of Birmingham and University of Leeds. Research interests include radical environmental innovations in energy technologies and storage. His academic work spans scholarly publications in chemical/mineral engineering sciences to applied engineering and instrumentation that has created new manufacturing processes. Richard is a Fellow of the Royal Academy of Engineering and received their Silver Medal in 2003. In 2014 he was identified by the Engineering and Physical Sciences Research Council as one of the UK’s Top 20 Inspirational Scientists and Engineers.