Professor Rob Massara has first-class BA (Hons) and PhD degrees in Electronic Engineering from the University of Essex; he is a Chartered Engineer and a Fellow of the Institution of Engineering and Technology. Before taking up an academic appointment, his industrial experience in UK industry was formed with Marconi-Elliot Microelectronics and GEC Semiconductors. His first academic role was as a Lecturer in Electronic Engineering at the University of Keele; he then joined the (then) Department of Electronic Systems Engineering at Essex (ESE) in 1978 as a Lecturer, and was promoted to a Senior Lectureship in 1984, and then to a Chair in 1991. Between 1992 and 1996, he was ESE's Head of Department. Prior to the Headship, he had established the University Research Centre for VLSI Systems Design and, within ESE, the Design Automation Laboratory. His research interests centred on the application of computer-aided design within electronic engineering, particularly in the role of CAD and numerical optimisation techniques in the design of analogue and digital integrated circuits. This work culminated in the development of CAD environments for the design of analogue and digital systems intended for full-custom VLSI chip realisation, activities that involved sustained and very active collaboration with industry, notably BT, Ericsson, and Fujitsu.
Professor Massara's recent University positions have been Deputy Vice-Chancellor, PVC (Research and Enterprise), and PVC responsible for the Faculty of Social Sciences. Rob held the post of Deputy VC from August 2003 to his retirement in July 2011, that of PVC (Research & Enterprise) from August 2001, and PVC (Social Sciences) from August 2008. Before that he was PVC (Resources) from August 1997 until July 2001.