Academic Council

Academic Council (2020-present)

The Academic Council oversees the day-to-day operation of Nireas-IWRC.


Dr. Despo Fatta-Kassinos is a Professor of the Department of Civil and Environmental Engineering, and the former Director of Nireas-IWRC at the University of Cyprus (UCY). With a Chemical Engineering background and further studies in Environmental management and education, her record includes more than 188 publications in refereed journals and more than 135 papers in international conferences. In 2012, she received the distinguished national research award ‘Nikos Symeonides 2011’ by the Research and Innovation Foundation of Cyprus, for her work on wastewater treatment and xenobiotics. In 2017, she received an honorary award for her long-standing contribution and activity in the research area of Environmental Protection by the Hellenic Open University. She is a Highly Cited Researcher (2018, 2019, 2020, 2021, 2022 and 2023, Web of Science, Clarivate Analytics). In 2022, she received the Noack Laboratorien Outstanding Science Career Award by The Society of Environmental Toxicology and Chemistry (SETAC). She is a member of the Scientific Advisory Board of the CRETUS Research Center of the University of the Santiago de Compostela in Spain, member of the Scientific Advisory Committee of the Catalan Institute for Water Research (ICRA) in Spain, and the Chair of the Advisory Board of the African Center of Excellence in Water and Environment Research (ACEWATER). She is also a member of the core group of the Global Panel on Chemical Pollution of the Environment (GPCPE), which is an initiative of the French National Water Academy. She is a founding member of the International Ph.D. School on Advanced Oxidation Processes. She has served as the Chair of the Scientific and Technological Advisory Board of the European JPI ‘Water Challenges for a Changing World’ (2015-2019), and she was the founding leader of the Working Group 5 ‘Wastewater reuse’ of NORMAN Association (2013-2019).She is Executive Editor of the Journal of Environmental Chemical Engineering and Editor in Water Research, Elsevier. She was the Coordinator of the ANSWER project (H2020-MSCA-ITN-2015/675530) (2015-2019) (with budget: 3.7 M€), and the Chair of the COST Action NEREUS ES1403 (2014-2018). She has published the children’ s book on water, entitled “The Secret Handbook of Blue Circle”, published by Papadopoulos Publishing House, in Greek (2018) and by IWA Publishing, in English (2019), (concept development and scientific editing). 

Her research expertise includes water and wastewater treatment and reuse; contaminants of emerging concern; advanced chemical oxidation processes; advanced biological treatment; advanced chromatographic analysis for the identification of microcontaminants in environmental matrices; assessment of the biological potency of microcontaminants and wastewater flows through the application of bioassays; antibiotic resistance in the aquatic environment; uptake of microcontaminants by crops during wastewater reuse.

Professor, EC3 Chair           

Prof. Dr. Symeon Christodoulou, born in Cyprus, began his undergraduate studies in 1987 on an academic scholarship awarded by the Agency for International Development (AID), and in 1991 he received a B.Sc. degree in Civil Engineering from Columbia University (New York City, USA). He then went on to complete his graduate studies, all on academic and research scholarships from Columbia University, graduating in succession with a Master’s of Science (M.Sc., 1992), a Professional Engineering Degree (1995), a Master’s of Philosophy (M.Phil, 1996) and a Doctorate (Ph.D., 1998). Upon completion of his PhD, and after several years of industry experience in the field of construction management, he joined Polytechnic University (Brooklyn, New York) as an Assistant Professor of Civil Engineering and Head of the Construction Management Program of the university (1998 – 2003). In 2004 he joined the University of Cyprus, having also worked for a year in Cyprus (construction industry) and in Greece (Democritus University of Thrace) as an Adjunct Professor. Dr. Christodoulou is the author of several scientific publications, the recipient of significant research funding (including a prestigious award from the National Science Foundation, NSF), the recipient of two international research awards (London, 1999; Athens, 2015) and of a best-teacher award (University of Thrace, 2003). He has served on several national and international scientific committees (most prominently he has been Cyprus’s national representative to the ESF/COST Domain Committee on transport and urban development, 2006-2013) and Chair of the European Council for Computing in Construction (EC3, 2019-2021), he is a reviewer for over 30 scientific journals (ASCE, Elsevier, Taylor and Francis, Springer, IWA, etc.), and a founding Board of Directors’ member of the Nireas International Water Research Center.

Prof. Dr. Christodoulou’s research and teaching interests are founded on three equally important pillars: (1) Construction engineering and management (primarily topics on resource-constrained scheduling, competitive bidding, building information models, and entropy); (2) Computer-aided engineering (fully integrated and automated project processes in the management of construction, with an emphasis on Building Information Models (BIM) and integrated information management systems, information technology, system integration and soft-computing techniques); and (3) urban infrastructure and risk analysis, with an emphasis on urban water distribution networks (temporal and spatial vulnerability, and waterloss management).


Prof. Dr. S. C. Kassinos has been a faculty in the Department of Mechanical and Manufacturing Engineering at the University of Cyprus since 2003. He completed his undergraduate studies at the University of Texas at Austin (B.Sc. in Mechanical Engineering, 1986) while on a CASP/USIA scholarship. He then moved to the Mechanical Engineering Department at Stanford University in California, where he received his M.Sc. in 1989 and his Ph.D. in 1995. He continued to work in the Mechanical Engineering Department at Stanford University as a Postdoctoral Fellow till 1997, when he joined the Research Staff at the Stanford/NASA-Ames Center for Turbulence Research (CTR). Between 1999 and 2003 he also held a joint appointment at the DOE Center for Integrated Turbulence Simulations (CITS) at Stanford University. He joined the University of Cyprus in 2003 as an Assistant Professor, where he is currently an Associate Professor and Associate Dean of Engineering. He is the Head of two Research Laboratories: the Computational Sciences Laboratory at the University of Cyprus (UCY-CompSci) and the Fusion Transnational Unit for Research in Cyprus (FUTURE-CY) and leads a team of 5 post-doctoral fellows, 3 PhD students and 1 M.Sc. Student.  He has been the coordinator of the Marie Curie TOK Action “Transfer of knowledge for the creation of a multidisciplinary core of excellence in the computational sciences at the University of Cyprus (UCY)”, which in its four years of implementation has resulted in more than 30  peer reviewed international journal publications and has attracted a considerable number of international researchers to Cyprus.  His research interests center on the numerical simulation and modeling of complex physical systems including fluid flow in connection with environmental, biomedical and technological applications. He teaches in the area of thermofluids and computational engineering. He has published over 40 papers in international peer-reviewed journals and has over 270 citations. Since joining the University of Cyprus, he has coordinated or participated as a partner in several research projects, receiving a total funding of over 2 million € for his research activities.


Prof. Dr. P. Papanastasiou is a Professor in the Department of Civil and Environmental Engineering of the University of Cyprus. He served as the founding Head of the Department of Civil and Environmental Engineering (2002-2008), founding director of the Program of Architecture (2004-2006) and Dean of the Engineering School (2009-2014). He is also the founding director of the Master in Petroleum Engineering Program.

He obtained his first degree in Civil Engineering from the NTU of Athens in 1984 and his M.Sc in 1986 and Ph.D in 1990 from the University of Minnesota. He worked more than 15 years in the Oil & Gas industry in the Research Center of Schlumberger in Cambridge, England from 1991 to 2002 and as consultant to Schlumberger in U.K. and Russia from 2002-2007. He was Advisor to the Government of Cyprus on hydrocarbon exploration, development and gas monetization options from 2011-2017 and he is currently member of the board of directors in the Cyprus Hydrocarbon Company.

His expertise and scientific contributions are in the areas of a) Applied and Computational Mechanics: geomaterials, plasticity theories, micromechanics, fracture mechanics, flow in porous media, finite element analysis b) Petroleum Geomechanics which includes problems on wellbore stability, hydraulic fracturing, sanding prediction and control, reservoir Geomechanics and CO2 geological storage and c) Oil and Gas management in upstream exploration and production and monetization of natural gas. He has published more than 160 articles in scientific journals, conference proceedings, book chapters, edited books and he invented 3 patents in the oilfield. He is editorial advisor in four international scientific journals on geomechanics and petroleum engineering.

Assistant Professor               

Dr. Dimokratis Grigoriadis received his B.Sc. (1995) in Mechanical Engineering at UMIST (Manchester, UK) and his M.Sc. (1996) in Environmental and applied Fluid Dynamics from the Von Karman Institute for Fluid Dynamics (Belgium). In 1996 he joined the National Research Center “Demokritos” (Greece) initially working on environmental flows and later on computational and experimental nuclear thermal-hydraulics at the GRR-1 reactor. Received his PhD (2003) in Mechanical Engineering from the Aristotle University of Thessaloniki (Greece) on “Large Eddy simulations of turbulent flows in complicated geometries”. He joined the university of Cyprus in 2006 as member of the Ucy-CompSci group. His main research interests include renewable energy sources, heat & mass transfer, computational Fluid dynamics (CFD) and high-performance computing.


Dr. Argyro Tsipa is a Lecturer in Environmental Biotechnology at University of Cyprus since September 2019. Before her current appointment, she was a research associate at the UK’s National Centre for Synthetic Biology and the London Biofoundry at Imperial College London. She holds a PhD in Bioprocess Systems Engineering and a MSc in Advanced Chemical Engineering from Imperial College London, UK. She obtained her diploma in Chemical Engineering from the National Technical University of Athens, Greece. Dr Tsipa is focused on Environmental Biotechnology and Biological Systems Engineering. 

Her research interests entail: (a) bioremediation of wastewater, (b) transcriptomics and proteomics of novel biological systems, (c) dynamic mathematical modelling to enhance bioprocess efficiency, (d) optimization of biological processes and (e) synthetic biology. 


Dr. Christos Nicolaides is a Marie Skłodowska-Curie Fellow and a Lecturer (US equivalent of tenure-track Assistant Professor) at the Department of Business and Public Administration at the University of Cyprus (UCY), where he leads the Social Analytics and Networks Lab. He has secondary research appointments as a Digital Fellow at the Initiative on the Digital Economy at Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT) and as a visiting scientist at London Business School. Before joining UCY, Christos spent three years as a Postdoctoral Fellow at MIT Sloan School of Management funded by the James McDonnell Foundation. He has a PhD in Engineering from the Massachusetts Institute of Technology, MSc in Applied Mathematics from Imperial College London and a BSc in Physics from University of Thessaloniki.

His research focus on applying mathematical, statistical and computational tools to large-scale empirical and data driven research questions with applications in identification of social influence that is mediated, amplified, or directed by interactive technologies.

He has worked closely with global firms on realizing business value from social networks. Christos’ research developments have been published in major scientific journals including Nature Communications and Journal of the Royal Society Interface and have been featured at prestigious news outlets including the New York Times, CNN and the Los Angeles Times. He led a number of projects funded by European Commission, industry (e.g. SMIXIN Inc) and the Cyprus Ministry of Health, amounting to more than €850k.   

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