Jane Grimson

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Jane Grimson

Jane Grimson.jpg
Jane Grimson

(1949-08-28) 28 August 1949 (age 69)
Alma mater[2]
Scientific career
InstitutionsTrinity College Dublin
ThesisFlexible database management system for a virtual memory machine[2] (1981)

Jane Grimson (née Wright), FREng, MRIA is a Scottish-born computer engineer. She is Fellow Emerita and Pro-Chancellor at Trinity College Dublin.


Grimson attended Alexandra College Dublin. She was the first woman to graduate in engineering from Trinity College Dublin[6] obtaining a first class honors degree and gold medal in 1970. She received a Masters in Computer Science from the University of Toronto in 1971,[1] and a PhD from the University of Edinburgh in 1981.[2]

Research and career[edit]

In 1980, Grimson was appointed to a Lectureship in Computer Science at Trinity College Dublin[7] where she spent her entire academic career, holding a Personal Chair in Health Informatics prior to her retirement in 2014.[7] Her major research interests are in Health Informatics, a field concerned with the application of Information and Communications Technology to improve the quality and safety of healthcare.[8][9]

Senior positions[edit]

Grimson served as Dean of Engineering and Systems Sciences from 1996-1999, as pro-Dean of Research in 2001 and as Vice-Provost from 2001-2005,[6] being the first woman to ever take these roles.[10] She was appointed Pro-Chancellor of the University of Dublin in 2016.[6]

A chartered Fellow of the Institution of Engineers of Ireland (now Engineers Ireland) and a EUR ING, Professor Grimson served as President of Engineers Ireland from 1999-2000, again the first woman to hold this role.[11] She is a Fellow and Past-President (2002) of the Irish Academy of Engineering and of the Irish Computer Society (2000-2004).[5] She was President of the Healthcare Informatics Society of Ireland from 1999-2006.[5] Professor Grimson was partially seconded to the newly established Health Information and Quality Authority (HIQA) as its first Director of Health Information in 2007,[12] where she led the development of national standards for health information. In 2014, she was appointed Acting Chief Executive of HIQA,[13] just prior to her retirement.

She has served on numerous boards including Science Foundation Ireland,[14] the Energy Research Council,[5] the European Research Advisory Board,[5] and the Mary Robinson Foundation - Climate Justice [15] and was Chair of the Irish Research Council for Science, Engineering and Technology.[7]

Diversity work[edit]

Professor Grimson is an outspoken advocate for the advancement of women in engineering and in research more broadly.[16] She helped to establish WiSER (the Centre for Women in Science and Engineering Research) at Trinity College Dublin,[17] and also chaired a Department of Education and Science committee aiming to increase female representation in Science, Engineering and Technology.[5] She also chaired the Gender Equality Task Force at NUI Galway from 2015-2016.[17][18]

Awards and honours[edit]

Professor Grimson was elected as an International Fellow of the Royal Academy of Engineering in 2004.[4] She was awarded the O'Moore Medal in 2007 in recognition of her contribution to the field of Health Informatics.[5] In 2009, she was elected as a member of the Royal Irish Academy.[3] In 2017 she was awarded an honorary degree by NUI Galway.[19]

Personal life[edit]

Professor Grimson's father was Professor Bill Wright, Chair of Civil Engineering in Trinity College Dublin.[20] She married a fellow Engineering student at Trinity, Bill Grimson.[20]


  1. ^ a b Grimson, Jane (1971). A performance study of some directory structures for large file. Toronto: Unpublished MSc thesis, University of Toronto.
  2. ^ a b c Grimson, Jane (1980). Flexible database management system for a virtual memory machine. University of Edinburgh: Unpublished PhD Thesis.
  3. ^ a b "Membership Page: Jane Grimson". Royal Irish Academy. Retrieved 10 March 2017.
  4. ^ a b "List of Felllows". Royal Academy of Engineers. Retrieved 11 March 2017.
  5. ^ a b c d e f g "Speech by the Taoiseach Mr Bertie Ahern TD at the presentation of the O'Moore Medal at the Annual Conference of the Healthcare Informatics Society of Ireland". Department of the Taoiseach. Retrieved 11 March 2017.
  6. ^ a b c Ryan, Charlotte (17 April 2016). "First Female Vice-Provost, Lasting Advocate for Gender Equality". University Times. Retrieved 10 March 2017.
  7. ^ a b c O’Donoghue, Aoife (9 March 2016). "Jane Grimson and David McConnell Elected University Pro-Chancellors". University times. Retrieved 10 March 2017.
  8. ^ Spaeth, Melanie; Grimson, Jane (2011). "Applying the archetype approach to the database of a biobank information management system". International Journal of Medical Informatics. 80 (3): 205–226. doi:10.1016/j.ijmedinf.2010.11.002.
  9. ^ Grimson, Jane (2001). "Delivering the electronic healthcare record for the 21st century". International Journal of Medical Informatics. 64 (2–3): 111–127. doi:10.1016/S1386-5056(01)00205-2.
  10. ^ McGuire, Peter (27 June 2016). "The great divide: why are there so few senior female academics?". Irish Times. Retrieved 10 March 2017.
  11. ^ Cox, Ronald; O'Dwyer, Dermott (2014). Called to Serve: Presidents of the Institution of Civil Engineers of Ireland 1835-1968. Dublin, Ireland: Engineers Ireland. ISBN 978-09502874-1-6.
  12. ^ Annual Report 2007 (PDF). Ireland: Health Information and Quality Authority. 2007. Retrieved 11 March 2017.
  13. ^ "HIQA appoints Jane Grimson acting chief executive". RTE News. 3 June 2014. Retrieved 11 March 2017.
  14. ^ Annual Report and Accounts (PDF). Science Foundation ireland. 2007.
  15. ^ Annual Report 2010: working for a just response to climate change (PDF). Dublin: Mary Robinson Foundation Climate Justice. 2010. Retrieved 11 March 2017.
  16. ^ Grimson, Jane (15 Nov 2016). "Letters to the editor: Women in science and academia". Irish Times. Retrieved 10 March 2017.
  17. ^ a b O'Doherty, Caroline (31 January 2015). "NUIG appoints woman head of equality task force". Irish Examiner. Retrieved 11 March 2017.
  18. ^ Grimson, Jane (May 2016). Promoting excellence through gender equality: Final Report of the Gender Equality Task Force, NUI Galway (PDF). Galway: NUI Galway. Retrieved 10 March 2017.
  19. ^ "Honorary degree recipients named". Galway Independent. 7 June 2017. Retrieved 10 June 2017.
  20. ^ a b "Jane Crimson b. 1949". Irish Life and Lore.