Talal Shahwan the sixth president of Birzeit University, obtained his first degree in Chemical Engineering with high honor in 1994 from the Middle East Technical University. He obtained his MSc and PhD degrees in Chemistry from Bilkent University in the years 1997 and 2000, where he subsequently worked for two years as a faculty member. In 2002-2008, Shahwan worked at Izmir Institute of Technology, and was promoted to associate professor in 2006. He joined Birzeit University in 2008, and was promoted to full professor in 2012.
The teaching experience of Prof. Shahwan covers various topics, on undergraduate and graduate levels. These include Physical Chemistry, Industial Chemistry, Environmental Chemistry, Surface Chemistry, and Chemical Nanotechnology. So far, in collaboration with local and international researchers, Shahwan has published more than fifty papers in international reputed journals, in addition to tens of abstracts and articles, which were submitted to local and international conferences and symposia. The research activities of Prof. Shahwan include environmental applications of iron nanotechnology, adsorption of aqueous pollutants on natural and synthetic materials, morphosynthesis of carbonate minerals. He is an active referee for many international periodicals.
Prof. Shahwan has received a number of honors, scholarships and awards. His publications were highly cited, and he was constantly ranked in the Stanford-Elsevier analysis lists of the top 2% of the most cited world scientists.
After joining Birzeit University, Prof. Shahwan served in a number of administrative positions. He was the Chairperson of Chemistry Department in 2012-2013, and the Dean of the Faculty of Graduate Studies and Head of Scientific Research Committee from 2013 to 2018, and the Vice President for Academic Affairs in 2021-2023. Dr. Shahwan was appointed as the President of Birzeit University starting from August 1st, 2023.