Simon Atkinson serves as vice chancellor for research at the University of California, Davis, where he oversees the Office of Research.
Atkinson previously served as vice chancellor for research at the University of Kansas (KU) from 2019–23 where he had primary responsibility for research on the Lawrence campus. In addition to research administration, his portfolio included oversight of 11 research centers and the KU Natural History Museum.
Prior to his role at KU, Atkinson was vice chancellor for research at Indiana University – Purdue University Indianapolis (IUPUI) and associate vice president for research for Indiana University, with systemwide responsibility for innovation and commercialization. He was chair of the IUPUI Department of Biology in the Purdue School of Science for five years, director of the Interdisciplinary Graduate Program in Medical Biophysics at the Indiana University School of Medicine for six years, and president of the IUPUI Faculty Council.
Atkinson is a molecular cell biologist recognized for studies in the cellular mechanisms and prevention and treatment of acute kidney injury. He has taught cell biology and biochemistry to undergraduate, graduate and medical students. In 2005, he co-founded INphoton, a life sciences company.
Atkinson has a doctorate in molecular biology from the University of Cambridge and a bachelor’s degree in cell and molecular biology from King’s College London. He was a postdoctoral fellow at the Johns Hopkins University School of Medicine.