After gaining his first degree in Maths in 1988, Richard studied statistics at the Cambridge University Statistical Laboratory and then got his first experience of medical research working for a year in the Academic Department of Psychiatry at Cambridge. Following a further year as a government statistician in the Department of Health, he returned to Cambridge to join the newly established Winnicott Research Unit (now based at Reading University), researching mother-infant interactions and postnatal depression.
During this period he also did a PhD in statistical pattern recognition. In 1996 he moved to King's College London, where he worked as a lecturer and statistical consultant in the medical school, as well as a reviewer and adviser for the NHS Executive's project grant and research training fellowship schemes.
In 1999 the medical schools of Guy's and St Thomas' hospitals merged with the medical school at King's, and Richard joined a thriving group of academic public health researchers at Guy’s. During this time he developed the statistics course for the Master of Public Health programme at King’s, and enjoyed a fruitful collaboration with members of the King’s Centre for Military Health Research. He moved to Imperial College London in 2006 when the Respiratory Epidemiology & Public Health group at King’s moved their operation there, and focused on the epidemiology of asthma and chronic obstructive pulmonary disease.
In 2010 he joined the Centre for Primary Care and Public Health at Barts and The London Medical School as a Senior Lecturer in Medical Statistics, where he has a leading role in the statistical and design advice work of Research Design Service London.