David Simplot named director of the Inria Sophia Antipolis – Méditerranée research center

David Simplot was appointed by Antoine Petit, CEO of Inria (the French Institute for Research in Computer Science and Automation), and took up his duties as the head of the Inria Sophia Antipolis – Méditerranée research center on 1 January 2018. He succeeds Gérard Giraudon, who had been director since June 2006.


Publication : 31/01/2018
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David Simplot is a full professor and was named as a member of the Institut Universitaire de France (French Academic Institute) in 2009. From 2004 until 2011, he managed the “POPS” (Systems and Networks for Small Portable and Secure Objects) project team (joint with Inria, Université de Lille, and the CNRS – French National Center for Scientific Research), which studied connected objects.
Simplot contributed to the implementation of the Future Internet of Things (FIT) project as part of the French Equipment of Excellence (EquipEx) initiative and received the Kuhlman Grand Prize of the Society of Science, Agriculture, and Arts of Lille in 2014 for his work.

A former fellow of the Institute of Advanced Studies in Science and Technology, David Simplot has been particularly devoted to regional bodies such as the Center for Contactless Technologies (CITC-EuraRFID) and business and research clusters. He is president of the Force Research and Enterprise association, which organizes the Force Awards begun by the Greater Lille Committee. From 2011 to 2017, he was director of the Inria Lille – Nord Europe research center and has been the scientific advisor to the chairman of Inria since then.

For Gérard Giraudon, “the Inria Sophia Antipolis – Méditerranée research center is a recognized leader in digital science research and a driver of innovation; it is an important partner in university dynamics as a founding member of the Université Côte d’Azur community and its UCAJEDI project for the French Excellence Initiatives program. In addition to having been involved in the initial launch of French Tech, the center is also a reliable partner of innovation ecosystems and is able to both communicate and create with the associated network of companies, corporate groups, and start-ups. David’s expertise, experience, and background will guarantee the continuation of the mission to make Inria shine across the Mediterranean arc.
David Simplot added, “It is an honor for me to succeed Gérard Giraudon as head of a research center that embodies Inria's slogan – scientific excellence at the service of technology transfer and society – located in an ecosystem, which is exceptional both by the quality of its academic partners and the intensity of private R&D, particularly in the fields of digital technology. With the success of the UCAJEDI project and the development of the EducAzur cluster, one of the priorities will be to successfully roll out the InriaTech PACA technology transfer platform by relying on the success and experience of InriaTech in Lille.

About the Inria Sophia Antipolis – Méditerranée research center


The Inria Sophia Antipolis – Méditerranée research center, created in 1983, has over 600 people of 50 different nationalities, including 500 scientists spread across 33 research teams in Sophia Antipolis, Montpellier, and Bologna. The research center is recognized for its strong involvement in the economic development of the Mediterranean region and, alongside its academic, institutional, and economic partners is committed to the major digital technology research and innovation projects in today’s world. There have been 25 spin-offs from Inria Sophia Antipolis – Méditerranée since its creation.

About Inria


Inria, the French National Institute for computer science and applied mathematics, promotes “scientific excellence for technology transfer and society”. Inria’s 2400 employees are graduates of the world’s top universities and rise to the challenges of digital sciences and mathematics. With its open, agile model, Inria is able to explore original approaches with its industrial and academic partners. Inria also efficiently responds to multidisciplinary and application challenges of the digital transformation and is the source of many creative innovations, adding value and creating jobs.

(transl. by Russell Todres - UCA Office of Intl. Scientific Visibility)