Bogdan Vernescu has been the vice provost for research (VPR) since June 2016, having served on an ad interim basis since October 2014. He has overall responsibility for the operation and non-financial support of WPI's research enterprise, including oversight of university-wide research institutes and centers and the offices that administer research sponsorship and intellectual property and innovation. As the university's chief research officer, Vernescu provides the vision and leadership to enhance faculty research efforts and increase support for research at WPI by government agencies, corporations, foundations, and other organizations.
Vernescu joined the WPI faculty in 1991 after serving as a researcher at the Institute of Mathematics of the Romanian Academy in Bucharest, Romania. His own research involves the use of mathematical techniques to model multiscale phenomena, including the ways in which the observable (macro-scale) properties of heterogeneous materials like rocks, bones, composites, and ceramics are determined by the interaction of component materials at smaller scales, with an eye to the design of novel materials.
In 1997 he co-founded WPI's Center for Industrial Mathematics and Statistics (CIMS) and served as its director for six years. CIMS was established to serve as a mathematical resource to industry by supporting student project work and faculty research aimed at addressing complex problems posed by the center's corporate sponsors. CIMS has received support from the National Science Foundation, the Alfred P. Sloan Foundation, the GE Foundation, and the Society for Industrial and Applied Mathematics (SIAM).
Vernescu was head of WPI's Department of Mathematical Sciences between 2003 and 2013.