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Westerhoff appointed ASU vice provost

ASU Vice Provost Paul Westerhoff
September 23, 2014

Paul Westerhoff, an Arizona State University engineering professor, has been appointed vice provost of academic research programming at the university. The new position is designed to elevate ASU’s efforts to meet the outlined 2020 research goals. Westerhoff’s appointment takes effect immediately.

“Unlike institutions reported to have overbuilt, and that are struggling with research space they cannot fill,” said ASU Provost Robert E. Page, Jr., “Arizona State University is a vital and growing research enterprise.

"Individual faculty engages in teaching, research and service to their communities. As a consequence, strategic planning and hiring is complex, and balancing faculty is needed to build the institution,” Page said. “Professor Westerhoff is an outstanding example of balance: an excellent teacher, exemplary researcher and dedicated citizen. He is ideally suited to take on the complex task of building a strategy for expanding the faculty at ASU."

A key part of meeting ABOR’s ambitious goal of $700 million in research expenditures for 2020 includes expanding the number of active research faculty members. Over the past decade, the number of full- or part-time faculty at ASU has expanded to more than 3,150, with more than 130 new tenured or tenure-track faculty joining the university in 2014. In response to these hires, research expenditures and academic achievements have increased. Westerhoff will help project additional faculty growth to meet 2020 goals set by ASU.

“I see this as a new and interesting people challenge,” said Westerhoff. “And I look forward to working with the university’s deans to establish strategic plans for faculty hires, development of new research facilities and buildings to support our research goals in the long term.”

Westerhoff joined the Ira A. Fulton Schools of Engineering in 1995, became the founding director for the School of Sustainable Engineering and The Built Environment in 2009 and served as associate dean for research and graduate affairs in engineering from 2011 to 2014.

He received his doctoral degree from the University of Boulder and a master’s of science from the University of Massachusetts, Amherst in environmental engineering. He earned a bachelor’s of science in civil engineering from Lehigh University. He has been published in more than 150 research journals and other publications, ranging from the Journal of Toxicology and Environmental Health, Cell Biology and Toxicology to ACS Nano and Environmental Science and Technology.

Westerhoff has received wide recognition for his research, from the development of novel treatment technologies to address emerging contaminants in drinking water to the study of the environmental impacts of nanoparticles.

He is the director of the LCnano Network, which was recently awarded $5 million as part of a national Life Cycle of Nanomaterials project to ensure the safety of nanomaterials – from the manufacture to use and disposal of engineered materials. The team includes engineers, chemists, toxicologists and social scientists from ASU, Johns Hopkins, Duke, Carnegie Mellon, Purdue, Yale, Oregon’s state universities, the Colorado School of Mines and the University of Illinois-Chicago. He is also a member of the Environmental Protection Agency’s Science Advisory Board, and has received a number of research and teaching awards.