I have overall responsibility for Research Services and lead the team of around 30 staff. Together we support the strategic ambitions in the University Plan and the Research and Innovation Strategy that stems from it.
Functional areas of responsibility include: Research Development, Research Grants and Contracts, Research Accounts, Research Excellence, Research Ethics and Governance, and the Kent part of the Eastern Academic Research Consortium (Eastern ARC). In addition we share responsibility for the Office for Scholarly Communication (OSC) with Information Services.
I have worked in research management and administration for over twenty years. Before coming to Kent I was the Director of Research Services at the University of Sunderland, having moved from an academic career as a computer science researcher at both Sunderland and Durham University.
Whilst there I launched a computer software company with a couple of colleagues, which gave me an invaluable insight into the challenges of launching spin-outs.
I have a passion for my profession and have served for 15 years on the Board of the Association of Research Managers and Administrators (ARMA), including three years as Chair. I am currently a member of its Advocacy Group. I am also the chair of the European Association of Research Managers and Administrators (EARMA) Awards Committee.
I am currently the Chair of CASRAI, the international consortium advancing standards in research administration information, which has chapters in Canada, the UK, and Europe. I was recently involved in reinvigorating the CRediT standard for author contributions.
More broadly, I continue to engage widely in the national and integration research management and administration communities. Recent international activities include serving on the NCURA AM59 program committee, the EARMA 2018 annual conference programme committee, an NCURA-funded international fellowship to visit Columbia University, and providing research evaluation consultancy to the University of Mauritius. I am currently an adjunct faculty member for the Johns Hopkins University masters in research administration (international variant) – part of the Advanced Academic Programs of the Krieger School of Arts and Sciences. I am also a member of the UK Government Open Standards Board and the Biochemical Society’s Publications Committee.
I recently led the NCURA–funded Research Administration as a Profession (RAAAP) project that aims to find out the key skills, attitudes and behaviours of successful research administration leaders. It involved a survey of 2,691 research administrators around the world. This initiative is continuing under the auspices of the International Network of Research Management Societies (INORMS). The INORMS RAAAP TaskForce will collect longitudinal data about the profession of Research Management and Administration (RMA).
Previously I was involved in the HEFCE-funded RMAS project and have led Jisc-funded projects such as IRIOS, IRIOS-2 and C4D. I was also the principal investigator on the EU-funded SUPPLYPOINT project.
Papers, presentations and talks
I am a huge advocate for professional development, and have been actively involved in a range of training, talks and other sessions in support of this. These have included numerous ARMA conferences and workshops, and at similar events run by other organisations including (and do forgive the acronym snowstorm!): AUA, BUFDG, EARMA, EuroCRIS, INORMS, Jisc, Million+, NCURA, Research Councils UK (RCUK) [now part of UKRI], RSP, SRAI, UKCGE.
Notable Previous Achievements
I have been fully engaged in a number of committees, working groups and reviews that have led to considerable advances in the field, and supported the research environment more broadly. These have included:
- The HEFCE Independent Review of the Role of Metrics in Research Assessment and Management that produced The Metric Tide report
- The RCUK Research Outcomes Harmonisation Project Board (which oversaw the introduction of Researchfish);
- Jisc ResearchID task and finish group (that recommended the adoption of ORCIDs in the UK);
- HEFCE Leadership Development for Principal Investigators project steering group (which produced the PI resource);
- UK Research Data Service (UKRDS) Steering Committee, which developed a business case for a national research data repository);
- RCUK Research Organisation Consultation Group (ROCG), which acts as an interface between higher education institutions (HEIs) and other research organisations and UK Research Councils;
- and RCUK Je-S Management Board, which directed their on-line submission system (Je-S) development
- UUK Open Access Coordination Group
- The Jisc Research Information Management Coordination Group
- An expert evaluator for the European Commission.
I hold a BSc in Natural Sciences from Durham and a professional doctorate in Research Management and Administration from the University of Sunderland.
More details of my professional and academic output can be found through my ORCID profile.