Making science work for development

New Director of UKCDS

16 June 2016

Today, Vicky Morgan has been announced as the new Director of the UK Collaborative on Development Sciences (UKCDS). Vicky will lead UKCDS over the next year as it evolves in response to the changing research for development funding landscape.

Vicky brings a wealth of experience in partnership and inter-agency working, essential to support the collaborative nature of UKCDS. Vicky’s leadership of UKCDS will ensure that through stimulating collaboration, the best science is funded and used to benefit international development, as well as the UK.

Vicky has a track record of working across government, science and civic society to develop joint agendas, streamline and coordinate work, and deliver knowledge, advice and policy.  She has led work to develop evidence for policy, action and reporting, for example on multi-national environmental agreements such as the Convention on Biological Diversity.  As work-stream manager of the EU-funded initiative Biodiversa, she co-authored their Stakeholder Engagement Handbook

Vicky’s knowledge and experience will prove invaluable in leading the UKCDS Secretariat to facilitate the work of its 15 member organisations and help maximise the impact of UK research for international development.

“I am excited to be joining UKCDS as it adapts its work, which is so important and successful, to new opportunities”, said Vicky on her new appointment.

“Changes in how the UK funds development research give us a huge opportunity to embed development perspectives into the UK’s world-class research councils and across government, as well as a huge challenge to collaborate to achieve maximum impact.  The international landscape is also shifting, with the Global Goals for Sustainable Development and fast-moving economic and cultural change.   UKCDS has an excellent track-record and reputation and I am delighted to be joining the team.”

Chair of UKCDS, Professor Duncan Wingham said, “I am very pleased to be able to announce Vicky’s appointment to this key role. With the increase in the funding of development related research, it is important that UKCDS adapts strategically to this new landscape. Vicky will play a central role in leading that adaptation, keeping UKCDS at the forefront of ensuring that science makes a full contribution to international development.”

Vicky replaces Fiona Reid as Director of UKCDS, after Fiona stepped down in January due to personal reasons. Helen Beadman has been the Interim Director from February to date. Vicky will be taking up her position with UKCDS at the beginning of July.

  • Robin Toomey