UCL academics embedded in government offices as UKRI Policy Fellowships

Six UCL researchers have been awarded a UK Research and Innovation (UKRI) Policy Fellowship, enabling them to work within government departments and What Works Centres across the UK to address key national and global challenges.

Dr Chloe Park (UCL Institute of Cardiovascular Science), Dr Jack Blumenau (UCL Political Science), Dr Lucy Irvine (UCL Institute for Global Health), Dr Neave O’Clery (UCL Centre for Advanced Spatial Analysis), Dr Keri Wong and Dr Laura Outhwaite (both of the Ioe, UCL’s Faculty of Education & Society) are six out of a total of 44 fellows chosen to work with the government to boost the impact of scientific research on public policy.

After its pilot programme in 2021, the UKRI Policy Fellowship scheme aims to put some of the UK’s brightest researchers at the heart of government to increase individual departments’ science and research capabilities. Fellows will seek to enhance the relationship between academia, government and research organisations (such as What Works Centres) by improving the flow of evidence, insights and talent over a 12 or 18-month period.

Two UCL academics have been selected to assist the Foreign, Commonwealth and Development Office. Dr Neave O’Clery, an Associate Professor in Applied Urban Science, will undertake an Economics, Data and Evaluation Fellowship, while Dr Lucy Irvine has been chosen for a Tackling Infections Epidemiology Fellowship.

Dr Keri Wong, an Associate Professor of Developmental Psychology and co-director of UCL’s Centre for Education and Criminal Justice System, will be working in the Home Office within a Criminal Justice System Strategy Analysis Fellowship.

Dr Laura Outhwaite, of the UCL Centre for Education Policy and Equalising Opportunities (CEPEO) in the Ioe, has been selected for an Improving Outcomes Education Research Fellowship within the Office for Standards in Education, Children’s

Professor Geraint Rees (UCL Vice-Provost, Research, Innovation and Global Engagement) said: "I am delighted that six UCL researchers have been selected for UKRI’s Fellowship programme. By feeding into a diverse range of government departments, the six Fellowships are a recognition of our research expertise and our commitment to policy engagement and impact.

"I am looking forward to seeing how the Fellowships develop and to see how UCL’s world-leading multi-disciplinary research informs policy-making for real-world challenges."

  • Bottom row: Dr Laura Outhwaite, Dr Jack Blumenau, Dr Neave O’Clery
  • Tom Cramp

    E: t.cramp@ucl.ac.uk

  • University College London, Gower Street, London, WC1E 6BT (0) 20 7679 2000