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Søren Rud Keiding is the new director of AIAS

A unanimous board has elected the previous acting director, Professor Søren Rud Keiding, dr.scient. as the new director of Aarhus Institute of Advanced Studies, AIAS, at Aarhus University. His great motivation is to get others to succeed.

A manager with an eye for bridge-building, in the metaphorical sense, now sits in the director’s chair at AIAS, Aarhus Institute of Advanced Studies, at Aarhus University. Since October 2019, Professor Søren Rud Keiding has been the acting director, and now a unanimous board has selected him to be the director from 1 January 2021. 

The chair of AIAS, Jørgen Frøkiær, head of the Department of Clinical Medicine at AU, is very pleased with the decision.

"With Søren Rud Keiding, we’re getting a leader with a strong international outlook and who knows every nook and cranny of the university. AIAS is an important platform for recruiting foreign talent to help ensure that AU can continue to develop as an internationally recognised university. I can't imagine anyone better than Søren for the task," says Jørgen Frøkiær.

The AIAS research institute was inaugurated at Aarhus University in 2013 with the aim of supporting networks and partnerships between researchers from all over the world in order to achieve excellence in research. So far, more than 100 researchers have had fellowships at AIAS.

Rector Brian Bech Nielsen stresses that a director of AIAS needs a wide spectrum of academic skills, and to be a skilled bridge builder. This is why Søren Keiding is such a good choice:

“Søren Rud Keiding has already demonstrated his skills by maintaining a high level of quality at AIAS and giving Aarhus a strong position on the international research scene. He’s very good at forging fruitful, close relations with the outside world and he strives to connect the fellows at the department more closely with the university's academic environments. Particularly the latter is a crucial bridge to build in order to promote knowledge exchange between fellows and the university's researchers, and this is one of the most important goals of AIAS. I very much look forward to continuing working with Søren Rud Keiding," says Brian Bech Nielsen.

The best of all worlds

Søren Rud Keiding (born 1959) is a professor and dr. scient. from the Department of Chemistry, and he has made a great effort to establish links between the university and the outside world. In more than a hundred lectures from stages at schools, colleges and associations, he has communicated his passion for water and light, and in collaboration with industry, he has developed new ultra-fast lasers based on optical fibres. In parallel with his research career, Søren Rud Keiding has had strong focus on education, partly as a supervisor for many generations of Bachelor’s and Master’s degree students and PhD students, and partly through his involvement in establishing the Master of Science in Engineering degree programme at Aarhus.

As the director of AIAS, he will be able to combine the best of his university careers.

"At AIAS, I can use my 30 years of experience as a researcher, teacher, supervisor, vice-dean and chair of a national research council to attract and develop talented researchers to benefit the research environments," says Søren Rud Keiding, who has particular focus on collaboration across disciplinary boundaries.

"AIAS is a fantastic place, where researchers meet and projects arise. A fellowship at AIAS means optimal conditions for sharpening a research profile, and our goal is to act as a bridge between departments, research environments and the international researchers who want to come to Aarhus," says Søren Rud Keiding.

"Basically, I'm interested in getting others to do their best. I get a lot of personal motivation from following researchers as they go. If this can also benefit the university and society, it’s more than twice as rewarding," says Søren Rud Keiding.



Director, Prof. Søren Rud Keiding
M: +45 28 99 20 61
Email: keiding@aias.au.dk