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Simon Philbin, LSBU

Prof Simon Philbin

Director of Engineering and Enterprise


Professor Simon P Philbin is Director of the Nathu Puri Institute for Engineering and Enterprise at London South Bank University. The Institute is focused on embedding enterprise into engineering education and industrial practice. Simon joined LSBU in 2018 and previously worked as Director of Programme Management at Imperial College London and Executive Chairman of Imperial College Projects Limited. While at Imperial and over 15 years he held a number of senior roles associated with the development and delivery of a range of multidisciplinary research areas and programmes.

Prior to joining Imperial in 2003, he was at the UK Ministry of Defence (DERA) and originally worked in the field of energetic materials. Simon is published across several areas including project management, research & technology management, and chemistry. He has presented at conferences across North America and Asia, and given lectures and seminars at several different universities. Simon holds a BSc (University of Birmingham) and PhD (Brunel University) in chemistry as well as an MBA with distinction (Open University Business School). He has experience of working with different industrial sectors, including defence, oil & gas, nuclear power and healthcare. Also, he has worked as a commercial consultant for major oil and gas companies.

Simon currently serves as a Board Member of the American Society for Engineering Management (ASEM) and has been elected as the President of ASEM for 2019/20. Previous academic roles include Visiting Fellow at Imperial College Business School and Visiting Research Fellow at Birkbeck, University of London. He is a Fellow of the Royal Society of Chemistry (RSC) and a Fellow of ASEM. Simon has won several academic and best paper awards, served on journal editorial boards and as an external examiner as well as other academic and professional assignments.

Module Leader for the Masters’ level module: Technology Evaluation and Commercialisation (TEC). The TEC module allows Masters’ level students to be guided towards identifying an emerging technology idea, which is evaluated for its commercial potential as part of the business planning for a potential high-tech start-up company.

Module Leader for the Masters’ level module: Technical, Research and Professional Skills. This module provides students with a range of skills and supporting knowledge in order to prepare them to undertake a Masters’ level research project and also gain further professional skills to support their long-term career development.

Course Leader for the online course developed in partnership with the Institution of Engineering and Technology (IET) called ‘Entrepreneurial Skills for Engineers’. The course is available through the IET Academy and the objective is to provide the skills and knowledge that engineers can use as part of the entrepreneurial journey to develop innovative ideas through to new products and businesses.

Simon originally trained as a research chemist and carried out organic chemistry research in areas such as the synthesis of nitrogen heterocyclic compounds and studies of nitration reactions.

Several years later he changed his disciplinary focus from physical sciences to engineering management and has subsequently undertaken research in several related areas. This includes project management and systems engineering, research & technology management, university-industry research collaboration, management of research centres, performance measurement systems, academic strategy development, entrepreneurship, and engineering education.

Simon also conducts research on the impact and adoption of emerging technologies from an engineering management perspective. This includes human intelligence-machine intelligence decision making, carbon capture and storage (CCS) projects, and techno-economic analysis of the adoption of electric vehicles.

Current PhD students supervised include:

  • Paul Mansell (Measurement of infrastructure projects’ success against sustainable development goals), 2018 – date.
  • Pavan Kumar Sala (Understanding how high-tech entrepreneurs successfully pivot as part of the entrepreneurial journey), 2018 – date.
View my publications at
  • Fellow, European Chemist and Chartered Chemist, Royal Society of Chemistry (FRSC EurChem CChem)
  • Fellow and Certified Professional Engineering Manager (CPEM), American Society of Engineering Management (ASEM)
  • Member, Society of Research Administrators (SRA) International
  • Certified Practitioner, PRINCE2 Project Management Standard
  • Certified Practitioner, MSP Programme Management Standard
  • Board Member, American Society of Engineering Management (ASEM) – elected President for 2019/20
  • Associate Editor (Project Management), Engineering Management Journal (EMJ)
  • Editorial Board Member, Journal of Research Administration (JRA)
  • External Examiner, various universities