Bernard Kippelen


Bernard Kippelen, Joseph M. Pettit Professor in Georgia Tech’s School of Electrical and Computer Engineering and co-president of the Lafayette Institute in Metz, France, has been named vice provost for International Initiatives, effective August 1. The search followed the announcement that Yves Berthelot will retire June 30 after 36 years of service to Georgia Tech.

Provost Steven W. McLaughlin will serve as interim vice provost for International Initiatives from July 1 to July 31. To help facilitate the transition, Iyonka Strawn-Valcy, director of Global Operations, will serve as interim senior associate vice provost from July 1 to August 31. In this role, Strawn-Valcy will oversee day-to-day operations of the vice provost for International Initiatives division and triage administrative, operational, and strategic issues and activities. 

“I’m so pleased that Bernard Kippelen will be our next vice provost for International Initiatives,” said Steven W. McLaughlin, provost and executive vice president for Academic Affairs. “In his long and admirable career at Georgia Tech, he has demonstrated a strong commitment to developing international partnerships that expand Georgia Tech’s global reach and deliver excellence in teaching and research. His leadership will be invaluable as we move forward with international initiatives. I would also like to thank Iyonka Strawn-Valcy for her support as interim senior associate vice provost during the transition period.”

Adam Stulberg, chair of the Nunn School of International Affairs, served as chair of the search committee.

As co-president of the Lafayette Institute, Kippelen oversees a collaborative innovation platform and commercialization initiative for optoelectronics and advanced materials research based at Georgia Tech-Lorraine. He joined the faculty at the Georgia Tech School of Electrical and Computer Engineering in 2003 and served as director of Georgia Tech’s Center for Organic Photonics and Electronics from 2011 to 2019.

“I am honored and excited to begin work as the next vice provost for International Initiatives,” said Kippelen. “Georgia Tech is a globally recognized partner in international cooperation and collaboration in research and education. I am fortunate to join a dedicated and talented team. Working together across geopolitical, cultural, and linguistic boundaries gives us the ability to solve complex research challenges and prepare our students to become globally minded, cross-culturally competent leaders.”

Prior to joining Georgia Tech, Kippelen was a researcher at the Centre National de la Recherche Scientifique in France and a faculty member at the Wyant College of Optical Sciences at the University of Arizona, where he developed a research and teaching program on polymer optics and plastic electronics.

Kippelen’s research includes investigation of fundamental physical processes such as light harvesting and emission, as well as the design, fabrication, and testing of lightweight optoelectronic devices and circuits including organic solar cells, organic light-emitting diodes, printable transistors, and organic photodiodes. He has served as chair and co-chair of numerous international conferences on organic optoelectronic materials and devices. He holds 26 patents, has co-authored over 270 refereed publications and 14 book chapters, and is the founding editor of Energy Express.

Born and raised in Alsace, France, Kippelen studied at the University Louis Pasteur in Strasbourg, where he received a maîtrise in solid-state physics in 1985 and a Ph.D. in nonlinear optics in 1990.