Professor Paul Nightingale has been appointed as ESRC's new Director of Strategy and Operations, and Professor Alison Park will be ESRC's new Director of Research.

Professor Alison Park will be joining ESRC as our Director of Research, from the UCL Institute of Education. 

Alison is a Professor of Social Research and the Director of CLOSER (Cohort and Longitudinal Studies Enhancement Resources), a significant ESRC-funded collaboration. CLOSER brings together eight leading UK longitudinal studies, the British Library and the UK Data Service to maximise the use, value and impact of longitudinal studies. It does this by stimulating longitudinal research, developing and sharing resources, and providing training. Prior to joining UCL, Alison led a research team at NatCen Social Research which carried out a range of government and academic studies, both qualitative and quantitative, including Understanding Society, the British Social Attitudes Survey and the UK arm of the European Social Survey.

Professor Paul Nightingale will be joining ESRC as our Director of Strategy and Operations, from the University of Sussex.

Professor Nightingale is a Professor of Strategy at the University of Sussex and was Deputy Director of the Science Policy Research Unit (SPRU). He is one of the UK editors of Research Policy, the leading international innovation studies journal. Originally trained as a chemist, he worked in industry before undertaking a PhD in Science Policy at SPRU. His main areas of research are science policy and the strategic management of technology, and he has researched extensively on innovation and its management and financing. Paul spent most of his career as a contract researcher and spent 10 years with the Complex Product Systems Innovation Centre, funded by the ESRC.

Professor Jennifer Rubin, ESRC Executive Chair, said:

"We are delighted to be welcoming Professor Paul Nightingale and Professor Alison Park to the ESRC as Directors. Alison and Paul bring a wealth of expertise and leadership of outstanding social science across a range of institutions and interdisciplinary programmes. This will be a great asset to the ESRC in delivering social science research that makes a contribution at a national and international level."