Professor Dame Ottoline Leyser DBE FRS, the distinguished plant scientist and Director of the Sainsbury Laboratory at the University of Cambridge, has been named as the new Chief Executive of UK Research and Innovation (UKRI), the national funding agency investing in science and research in the UK.
Professor Dame Ottoline Leyser appointed as new Chief Executive of UKRI
Announcing her appointment, Business Secretary Alok Sharma from the Department for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy, said: “Professor Leyser’s appointment comes at a critical time for the UK. The coronavirus pandemic has shown the importance of science for our future and UKRI has a vital role to play in this.
“As the new Chief Executive, Professor Leyser will drive forward UKRI’s mission to create the great British companies of the future and help keep the UK at the cutting edge of global research and development.
“I would like to thank Sir Mark Walport for his dedication to UKRI, leading its transformation programme and championing science, engineering and technology across the UK.”
Science Minister Amanda Solloway said: “I am thrilled with the appointment of Professor Leyser and I look forward to working closely with her to drive forward our shared ambition to boost our world-leading research and development.
“Since its launch in 2018, UKRI has gone from strength to strength. Professor Leyser has already led a highly collaborative lab in her previous role which will be a great skill to bring to UKRI as it embarks on a new stage of exciting evolution.”
Dame Ottoline has a long-term interest in inclusiveness and engagement in science and has driven many initiatives to support an open and collaborative research culture that delivers high quality research that is both valuable and valued. This includes ongoing work to improve research culture. She has for a long time been actively engaged in science policy, currently chairing the Royal Society’s Science Policy Expert Advisory Committee and serving on the Prime Minister’s Council for Science and Technology.
Image: Ottoline Leyser
Credit: Sainsbury Laboratory
Reproduced courtesy of the University of Cambridge
The University of Cambridge is acknowledged as one of the world's leading higher education and research institutions. The University was instrumental in the formation of the Cambridge Network and its Vice- Chancellor, Professor Stephen Toope, is also the President of the Cambridge Network.