Kieran Fernandes

  • Professor and Associate Dean - Durham University

Research interests

Professor Kiran Jude Fernandes is the Dean for Internationalisation and Professor of Operations Management at the Durham University Business School. Professor Fernandes is also the Executive Director of the Northern Powerhouse Innovation Observatory, Fellow of University College Durham and the Wolfson Research Institute.

He held academic positions at the Universities of Warwick and York and is a Professeur Invité at EMLyon (France) and Special Advisor and Consulting Professor at the Cabinet Office’s Civil Contingencies Secretariat. He has been appointed by the UK Secretary of State for International Development as a Non-Executive Director of the UK National Commission (UKNC) for UNESCO with special responsibility for Higher Education, and in 2017 was elected vice-chair of the UKNC.

In 2017, Professor Fernandes was invited by the Swiss Federal Department of Foreign Affairs (SFDFA) to lead a Global study on measuring the impact of UNESCO Chairs on UN SDG 2020 agenda. He is Chair of NG Bailey’s Market Foresight Group and Director of the Global Gateway’s Federation.

He currently sits on a range of advisory panels covering various aspects of Operations and Innovation Management, Academic Advisory Council member of the Chartered Management Institute, and is member of a variety of editorial boards.

Professor Fernandes has a Bachelor’s Degree in Production & Mechanical Engineering, Masters of Science in Industrial Engineering from Mississippi State University and the Massachusetts Institute of Technology and a PhD in Engineering from Warwick University.

Professor Fernandes served as the Head of Department from 2013 to 2017; Pro Dean for Research and the Principal Investigator of the York Centre for Complex Systems Analysis. Prior to his academic career he was a Sub-Systems Engineer at the NASA's Stennis Space Centre, where he was awarded the NASA Space Shuttle Main Engine Continuous Improvement Award for his work on decision-making systems.

Professor Fernandes is a world-leading expert on modelling complex systems and on digital innovation in supply chains. His research has modelled complex systems ranging from crime networks to global supply chains, with a strong track record in translation to the business community. Using a complex systems lens he has worked with construction, pharmaceutical, biotech and digital firms. His research has been funded by prestigious and competitive funding bodies like the British Council, Department for Business Innovation and Skills, Economic and Social Research Council, Engineering and Physical Sciences Research Council, Foreign and Commonwealth Office, NASA, North East Local Enterprise Partnership, Royal Academy of Engineering and the Swiss Federal Department of Foreign Affairs.

Professor Fernandes was elected to a Fellowship of the Academy of Social Sciences in 2015, when he was awarded the Caterpillar Faculty Awards for his work on supply chain optimisation. He received the Vice Chancellor’s Gold Medal for his work on internationalisation. He was awarded the Rutherford Excellence in Engineering Award and the NASA Space Shuttle Main Engine Continuous Improvement Award for his work on decision-making systems. Professor Fernandes was named the Financial Times' Professor of the Week for his work on home automation and smart cars. He was invited by the UAE Federal Competitiveness and Statistics Authority (along with UNESCO Director General Irina Bokova) to present his work on UN SDG’s at the World Government Summit in 2018.