Department of Psychiatry
Tell us a bit about your role
I have worked in a professional support role within the Department of Psychiatry for almost two decades. Over that time, I have managed many grants right through from conceptual phase, to submission, post-award and closure. I’ve been involved in all aspects of grants from budgets, to project management to conducting experiments. I’ve broadened my role in the past few years to bring the strengths I have in pre-award grant proposal preparation to the wider department in a research facilitation role. I administratively coordinate the Research Excellence Framework (REF) submission for Psychiatry, Psychology and Neuroscience. My career history offered a natural path into my current role. I completed my undergraduate degree at UCL in the History and Philosophy of Science. Subsequently, I worked in academic administration for a cardiac research department in London, and went on to work on various Research Ethics Committees, both in London and Oxford. I have been able to use the expertise and knowledge that I gained from this experience in my work within the Department of Psychiatry, both in terms of the process of reviews and the considerations ethics committee members have for a multitude of aspects of research.
What is the most meaningful aspect of your work?
I get satisfaction from helping people navigate administrative structures surrounding academic research, be that internal grant application procedures, funders’ requirements, and/or ethics and other regulatory obligations. The most meaningful aspect for me currently is seeing an early career researcher successfully obtain independent research funding and enabling them to conduct investigator-led research.
Can you tell us about something you've done, contributed to that you're most proud of?
I was delighted at the outcome of our REF 2014 submission, which I administratively coordinated for Psychiatry, Psychology and Neurosciences. Our Unit of Assessment ranked top for world-leading research.
I am very proud of some of Professor Alan Stein’s larger programme grants and multi-national collaborations in perinatal mental health and early child development, which I brought together administratively in my role working with him. I found it very rewarding to see these projects through to fruition.
What changes would you most like to see in the Medical Sciences in the next 100 years?
I would like to see greater consistency and administrative streamlining of processes to enable academic research to excel and place less administrative burden on researchers. I would also like to see a greater influence of non-western cultures and global agendas, for example in low-middle income countries, within Medical Sciences.