Professor Muffy Calder, of Glasgow University's computing science department who is currently on secondment to the Scottish Government, will become Vice Principal and head of the College of Science and Engineering.
Prof Calder takes up her new post later this year when she leaves the Government to succeed Prof John Chapman.
As Chief Scientific Adviser for Scotland, she is a champion of science as a key driver of the economy.
Prof Calder said: "John Chapman will be a big act to follow. I hope to build on his achievements as well as the achievements of the scientists, engineers and support staff in the College itself."