Dr. Eric van Oort became Professor in Petroleum Engineering at the University of Texas at Austin in 2012, after a 20-year industry career with Shell Oil Company. He holds a PhD degree in Chemical Physics from the University of Amsterdam. He has (co-)authored more than 190 technical papers, holds 14 patents, is a former SPE Distinguished Lecturer, a SPE Distinguished Member, and the 2017 winner of the prestigious international SPE Drilling Engineering Award. At UT Austin, he directs drilling-related R&D in two industry consortia (RAPID and CODA) with over 25 industry company sponsors, covering drilling automation & control, sensor design, big data analytics, complex well construction challenges, and well abandonment & decommissioning. Recently, he has become involved in deep closed-loop geothermal drilling through UT’s new GEO initiative, for which he is the technical lead. In addition, he is the co-founder of 3 start-up companies and is the CEO of his own consulting company.