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Our team and boards

Leadership   Back to Top

Jo Adetunji

Jo Adetunji

Editor

Jo Adetunji is the Editor of The Conversation UK. Previously, Jo worked as a reporter and editor at the Guardian, and has also written for The Times and The Independent.

Chris Waiting

Chris Waiting

Chief Executive Officer

Chris joined The Conversation as Chief Executive in May 2018. The Conversation is the world's leading publisher of research-based news and analysis. A unique collaboration between academics and journalists, The Conversation exists to democratise knowledge. He previously worked for the Associated Press as Director of Strategy & Development, and for the BBC as Chief of Staff where he advised the COO and Director-General.

Stephen Khan

Stephen Khan

Executive Editor, The Conversation International

Stephen Khan is Executive Editor of The Conversation, global network. He was previously Editor of the UK edition. Before joining The Conversation in 2013, during the initial phase of its international expansion, he was a news editor at The Guardian. He has also been deputy foreign editor of The Independent and Scotland editor of The Observer.

Matt Warren

Matt Warren

Managing Director

Matt manages The Conversation's new offering, Universal Impact, providing bespoke training, editing, writing, video production, impact and policy engagement services. He is also a Co-Investigator on the International Public Policy Observatory (IPPO). Before joining The Conversation, Matt was a magazine editor and features executive on The Daily Mail.

Editorial   Back to Top

Stephen Harris

Stephen Harris

News Editor

Stephen is The Conversation UK's news editor, responsible for managing the day-to-day publication of articles on the site. He previously spent a decade as a science and technology journalist, including five years as The Conversation's science editor, and before that as senior reporter and special projects editor for The Engineer, the world's longest running technology magazine.

Laura Hood

Laura Hood

Politics Editor, Assistant Editor

Laura worked for more than five years as a reporter and news editor for Research Fortnight, a specialist publication focusing on science, technology and higher education policy. She also worked as a reporter for Research Europe, covering French higher education policy and European policy in areas including space and innovation.

Jonathan Este

Jonathan Este

Associate Editor, International Affairs Editor

Jonathan Este spent 20 years as a reporter, columnist and editor on The Australian and the Independent. He has been with The Conversation UK since it launched in 2013. Prior to that he was communications and policy director with the Media Alliance in Australia where he specialised in media law and policy and the digital revolution in journalism.

Avery Anapol

Avery Anapol

Commissioning Editor

Avery is a writer and editor with professional experience in social media, news editing, and political reporting. Before joining The Conversation, she completed her MA in Applied Linguistics at UCL, writing her dissertation on the design of political COVID-19 memes in the UK.

Dale Berning Sawa

Dale Berning Sawa

Acting commissioning editor, Cities and Young People

Dale is a freelance features writer (The Guardian, the Times, the Art Newspaper, the Economist, the Quietus, Elephant) covering culture, lifestyle, tech, society and more. She previously worked as commissioning editor on the arts and lifestyle desks at the Guardian.

Clint Witchalls

Clint Witchalls

Health + Medicine Editor (UK edition)

Before joining The Conversation, Clint worked as a freelance journalist covering health, science and technology for The Economist, Newsweek, New Scientist, The Guardian, The Observer, the Daily Mirror and the Independent. He also wrote a book about his year as a clinical trial "guinea pig" called Die Pille und Ich (Rowohlt), and co-authored a bestselling children's book on technology called Cool Stuff and How It Works (Dorling Kindersley).

Heather Kroeker

Heather Kroeker

Commissioning Editor, Health + Medicine

Before joining The Conversation as a commissioning editor, Heather studied an MA in International Journalism at City, University of London. While there, she briefly interned with both the Islington Tribune and the Bureau of Investigative Journalism. She also holds a BA in English Language and Literature from Brock University in Canada.

Rob Reddick

Rob Reddick

Commissioning Editor, COVID-19

Rob joined The Conversation in May 2020, having previously worked as a commissioning editor for Mosaic Science. He covers science and health and specialises in features and longform.

Steven Vass

Steven Vass

Business + Economy Editor

Steven Vass joined The Conversation in February 2014 after nearly 10 years at the Sunday Herald, first as media correspondent and then as deputy business editor, where he wrote about most aspects of business but particularly energy, the economy and the financial crisis. He previously spent several years as a VSO volunteer in Zambia and several more as a media analyst in London.

Luke Salkeld

Luke Salkeld

Commissioning Editor

Luke has worked as a journalist in the UK national press for 14 years, including a decade at the Daily Mail as a reporter and news editor. He is based in Bristol.

Miriam Frankel

Miriam Frankel

Science Editor

Miriam worked for four years as a reporter and news editor of Research Fortnight, a specialist publication focusing on science, technology and higher education policy. She has previously written for publications including New Scientist, Nature and Physics World. She also has a background as a PhD student in atomic physics, specialising in laboratory astrophysics.

Jack Marley

Jack Marley

Environment + Energy Editor

Jack joined The Conversation in 2018 after internships at Mongabay and The Press Association. He has a research background in marine biology and began his media career at university, where he reported on a fossil fuel divestment campaign for his campus paper. Jack edits the Environment + Energy section and is interested in climate change, biodiversity and animal behaviour. He is based in Newcastle.

Will de Freitas

Will de Freitas

Environment + Energy Editor

Will de Freitas helped to establish The Conversation in the UK. Previously, he worked on data projects for the Guardian's Global Development website, and for three years worked in ministerial offices at Whitehall.

Imogen Malpas

Imogen Malpas

Commissioning Editor, Environment + Energy

Imogen is a journalist and editor specialising in climate, health and music & culture. She holds a BASc in neuroscience and literature from University College London and an MSc in medical anthropology from Oxford University.

Holly Squire

Holly Squire

Special Projects Editor

Holly joined The Conversation at the start of 2015 from a background in broadcast journalism and magazine publishing having previously worked at the BBC as a journalist and researcher in radio and television. At The Conversation, she mainly covers art and culture stories but has previously worked across education, society and health. Holly also regularly contributes to The Conversation's podcast The Anthill. Her role is part-funded by the Independent Social Research Foundation.

Naomi Joseph

Naomi Joseph

Commissioning Editor, Arts + Culture

Naomi is a features journalist covering race, culture, design and the startup industry. She was formerly a sub-editor at The Independent and has bylines in The Sunday Times, Monocle and Courier magazine.

Jane Wright

Jane Wright

Commissioning Editor, Scotland

Jane Wright has worked for a variety of Scottish newspapers including The Herald, The Daily Mail and Scotland on Sunday. In 1999, she joined the launch team of The Sunday Herald and edited the magazine for eight years. Jane moved to London to launch Eurostar's new magazine, and edited several travel publications. Returning to Glasgow in 2016, she joined The Conversation in March 2017.

Paul Keaveny

Paul Keaveny

Investigations Editor

Paul has been a journalist for 20 years. Before joining The Conversation he worked as a news reporter for BBC news online and has also worked for The Sun and The Press Association, working mainly on breaking news and court reporting. He specialises in commissioning and editing long-form journalism for The Conversation's Insights series.

Josephine Lethbridge

Josephine Lethbridge

Investigations Editor

Josephine specialises in commissioning and editing long-form journalism for The Conversation's Insights series. She joined The Conversation in 2014 and has worked in a number of roles, including arts and culture editor and interdisciplinary editor. She has an MA in English Literature from the University of Glasgow and an MSc in Science, Technology and Society from UCL.

Maria Albano

Maria Albano

Editorial Assistant

Maria has written features on the intersection of culture and current affairs for a variety of newspapers (The Independent, UnHerd, Mail+, The Critic). After graduating from the University of St Andrews with an MLitt in Comparative Literature, she joined The Conversation as Editorial Assistant for the Insights' series.

Katie Francis

Katie Francis

Editorial Assistant

Katie joined The Conversation in 2021 after graduating from the University of Oxford with a BA in History. She has previously been sub-editor of an intersectional woman's magazine, and has freelanced for various publications covering topics of arts, culture, and politics.

Melissa Jacobs

Melissa Jacobs

Science Editor

Before joining The Conversation Melissa worked as a freelance journalist, writing for publications including The Telegraph, Austin Monthly, and Huff Post. Her academic background is in Biological Sciences, and she has a special interest in molecular biology, microbiology, wildlife conservation, and psychology. Prior to retraining in journalism, she worked as a policy civil servant and U.K. diplomat.

Audio   Back to Top

Gemma Ware

Gemma Ware

Editor and Co-Host, The Conversation Weekly Podcast

Gemma joined The Conversation in early 2014 and has worked in a number of roles including education editor, society editor and global affairs editor, as well as on The Anthill Podcast. Before joining The Conversation, Gemma worked for more than five years as assistant editor at the Paris-based The Africa Report magazine where she focused on business, technology and education. She previously wrote about fundraising and UK charity policy at Civil Society Media.

Mend Mariwany

Mend Mariwany

Co-producer, The Conversation Weekly Podcast

Mend joined The Conversation in 2021 as co-producer of The Conversation Weekly podcast. He is a multimedia producer working across audio and video, with experience covering global conflict, environmental crisis, and migration. Mend is also founder of the London-based media festival Bare Lit.

Daniel Merino

Daniel Merino

Assistant Science Editor & Co-Host of The Conversation Weekly Podcast

Daniel is a marine biologist-turned-science journalist with experience in print, radio and podcasting. He was previously at Marketplace and Big Picture Science, is a grantee of the Pulitzer Center on Crisis Reporting and holds an M.S. from Boston University in Science Journalism. Before his career as a storyteller, he worked as a biologist on the California coast tracking salmon populations and growing abalone.

Audience   Back to Top

Khalil A. Cassimally

Khalil A. Cassimally

Audience Project Manager

Khalil has a keen interest in science, and has written for the Guardian, Scientific American, nature.com and others. He worked on science blogging networks for Nature Publishing Group before joining The Conversation in 2013.

Alice Mason

Alice Mason

Social Media Producer

Alice joined The Conversation as Social Media Producer in 2021. She holds a B.A. in Drama and Creative Writing.

Membership   Back to Top

Michael Parker

Michael Parker

Membership Editor

Part of the team that launched The Conversation in the UK in 2013, Michael has been its environment + energy editor, technology editor, and is now membership editor managing the membership. Previously he was for 10 years a news and features journalist covering everything from crime to culture for British newspapers and magazines, latterly Associate Editor at The Big Issue in London.

Joanie Magill

Joanie Magill

University Relations Coordinator

Before joining The Conversation, Joanie was part of a Research England funded project at University of Liverpool which aimed to create a career development approach for postdoctoral researchers. She has over ten years' experience in the education and arts sectors.

Universal Impact   Back to Top

Matt Warren

Matt Warren

Managing Director

Matt manages The Conversation's new offering, Universal Impact, providing bespoke training, editing, writing, video production, impact and policy engagement services. He is also a Co-Investigator on the International Public Policy Observatory (IPPO). Before joining The Conversation, Matt was a magazine editor and features executive on The Daily Mail.

Katy Chenoweth

Katy Chenoweth

Head of Innovation and Development

Before joining The Conversation's Universal Impact, Katy was editor at the Oil Companies International Marine Forum where she collaborated with industry stakeholders to edit publications, policies, and guidelines. Katy began her editing career at an academic journal, Oral Tradition, becoming Managing Editor in 2014, before serving as an editorial advisor at Harvard University.

Mike Herd

Mike Herd

Editorial Project Manager

Mike spent more than two decades at The Guardian, during which he launched and edited Guardian Cities and the Inequality Project, having previously been deputy editor of the News, Features and Sports pages. He also advised on the launch of the Wellcome Trust's longform site Mosaic, and more recently dusted off his Economics degree to become the Consulting and Cities Editor at Oxford Economics.

Board of Trustees   Back to Top

Colin Riordan

Colin Riordan

Chair

Professor Colin Riordan took up the post of President and Vice-Chancellor at Cardiff University on 1 September 2012. Previously he was Vice-Chancellor of the University of Essex, having been appointed in October 2007. He moved to Essex from Newcastle University, where he had been Pro Vice-Chancellor and Provost of the Faculty of Humanities and Social Sciences since August 2005.

Other Interests/affiliations that may conflict with The Conversation UK: None

Diana Beech

Diana Beech

Chief Executive Officer at London Higher

Dr Beech joined London Higher last summer from the University of Warwick where she was head of government affairs. Before this, she worked as policy advisor to three ministers of state for universities, science, research and innovation – Sam Gyimah, Chris Skidmore (twice) and Jo Johnson – and was director of policy and advocacy at the Higher Education Policy Institute (Hepi).

Nishan Canagarajah

Nishan Canagarajah

Vice-Chancellor

Professor Nishan Canagarajah joined the University of Leicester in November 2019 as President & Vice-Chancellor. Previously he was Pro Vice-Chancellor for Research and Enterprise at the University of Bristol since 2014. While at Bristol, Nishan was Dean of the Faculty of Engineering between 2001 and 2014 and has acted as a Technical Consultant for a number of industrial partners including Sony, BT, BBC, Orange, Thales, Toshiba and the Met Police.

Nicholas Eldred

Nicholas Eldred

Nicholas is a consultant general counsel, advising companies on legal, regulatory and governance issues. A qualified solicitor, he has held general counsel & secretary roles at O2uk, the BBC and Christie’s. He is a former trustee of BBC Children in Need and chair of the Public Service Broadcasting Trust. He is company secretary of The Auckland Project and consultant general counsel of The Royal Ballet School amongst other legal roles.

Other Interests/affiliations that may conflict with The Conversation UK: None

David Levy

David Levy

David is currently Senior Research Associate at the University of Oxford's Reuters Institute for the Study of Journalism, following a decade as its director. His career has spanned broadcasting and academia and he has a particular interest in connecting research, policymaking and wider public debate. He previously worked at the BBC as a reporter, editor and Controller Public Policy

Other Interests/affiliations that may conflict with The Conversation UK: None

Katie Metzler

Katie Metzler

Associate Vice President

Katie Metzler is Associate Vice President for Social Science Innovation at SAGE Publishing. She has led editorial and product management teams to develop new resources and digital products to support social science education and research. Much of her work at SAGE has centred on creating products that enable researchers and students to learn and apply robust research methodology. Katie believes in the power of the social sciences to help us understand and improve society, and in addition to jo...

Adrian Monck

Adrian Monck

Adrian is an award winning journalist, currently member of the World Economic Forum's Managing Board, leading the Public Engagement & Foundations. Previously, he headed the Department of Journalism at City University London, where he was also a professor. As a journalist, he spent his career with CBS News, ITN and Sky News. He is also a published author.

Other Interests/affiliations that may conflict with The Conversation UK: None

Joanna Newman

Joanna Newman

Dr Joanna Newman is the Secretary General of The Association of Commonwealth Universities. Joanna joined the ACU from King’s College London where she was the Vice-Principal (International). In previous positions, she was Director of the UK Higher Education International Unit and the Head of Higher Education for the British Library. In 2014, she was awarded an MBE in recognition of her work in promoting British higher education internationally.

Other Interests/affiliations that may conflict with The Conversation UK: None

David Smith

David Smith

Trustee

David Smith has been Economics Editor of The Sunday Times since 1989. He is also chief leader-writer, assistant editor and policy adviser. David is the author of several books, including Free Lunch: Easily Digestible Economics; and Something Will Turn Up: Britain’s Economy Past, Present and Future. He is a visiting professor at Cardiff and Nottingham Universities and has won a number of awards.

Michael Spence

Michael Spence

President & Provost of UCL

Dr Spence's work includes articles and books on both intellectual property law and the law of obligations, with a critical focus on suggested ethical and economic justifications of the existing regimes. He remains a consultant to the London law firm, Olswang and serves as a WIPO Arbitration and Mediation Center Panelist. He has lectured on intellectual property-related topics around the world, and held a number of visiting appointments in Boston, Munich and Siena. He has twice been a Pars...

Caroline Thomson

Caroline Thomson

Non-executive director VITEC plc, Chair of the Remuneration Committee and a member of the Audit and Nominations Committees. She is currently Chair of Digital UK, a Non-Executive Director of UKGI and Chair of its Remuneration Committee, and a trustee of Tullie House Gallery in Cumbria. She has been Chair of Oxfam UK’s trustees since January 2017. She was formerly Executive Director of English National Ballet.

Other Interests/affiliations that may conflict with The Conversation UK: None

Editorial board   Back to Top

Dinah Birch

Dinah Birch

Pro-Vice-Chancellor for Cultural Engagement, Professor of English Literature

Dinah Birch is Professor of English Literature at the University of Liverpool, and currently serves as the university’s Pro-Vice-Chancellor for Cultural Engagement. An academic and literary critic, she previously taught English at Trinity College, Oxford. She specialises in Victorian literature, and has published extensively on writers including Charles Dickens, Charlotte Brontë, Emily Brontë, and Alfred Tennyson. She was a member of the jury for the 2012 Man Booker Prize.

David Amigoni

David Amigoni

Professor of Victorian Literature, Pro Vice-Chancellor for Research and Enterprise

David Amigoni is Pro Vice-Chancellor for Research and Enterprise at Keele University, having joined the university in 1995. He was elected Fellow of the English Association in 2008, and is a member of AHRC's Peer Review College. His public engagement work includes speaking at literary festivals and an interview with the Booker Prize-winning novelist Ian McEwan at the Bicentenary festival of Charles Darwin's birth in Cambridge, 2009. He has appeared on BBC Radio 4's The Long View. He is commit...

John Bridgeman

John Bridgeman

Pro Vice Chancellor (Research & Knowledge Transfer)

John Bridgeman joined the University of Bradford as Pro-Vice-Chancellor for Research and Knowledge Transfer in October 2017. John studied Civil Engineering at the University of Birmingham and completed an MSc and PhD in Water Science and Engineering at Cranfield University. He worked in the water industry for 15 years before returning to the University of Birmingham as a Senior Lecturer in 2005. He was promoted to Reader in 2011 and Professor of Environmental Engineering in 2013.

James Conroy

James Conroy

Professor of Religious and Philosophical Education and Vice Principal, Internationalisation

Professor Conroy is currently the Vice Principal of Internationalisation at the University of Glasgow. He is Chair of the Glasgow University International Educational consultancy and a member of the Board of the PASCAL Observatory. He was previously International Lead for the college of Social Sciences and Leader of the Research Cluster on Creativity, Culture and Faith; and has held the posts of Dean of the Faculty of Education, Head of Graduate School.

Tara Dean

Tara Dean

Pro-Vice-Chancellor (Research and Enterprise)

Professor Dean joined University of Brighton in August 2016 and has overall responsibility for all research and enterprise activities. Professor Dean was born and raised in Iran and came to the UK aged 16 to continue her studies. She received a BSc in Biological Chemistry from the University of Essex and completed her PhD in 1999 in Pharmaceutical Chemistry from King’s College London.

Colette Fagan

Colette Fagan

Vice-President for Research

Colette was appointed Vice-President for Research at the University of Manchester in 2017, and holds a chair in Sociology since 2005. Previously she was the university's Deputy Dean and Vice-Dean for Research (2010–17) of the Faculty of Humanities. Before that she held posts as the Research Director for the School of Social Sciences (2004–10) and Co-Director of the European Work and Employment Research Centre (2004–10).

Todd Landman

Todd Landman

Professor of Political Science, Pro Vice Chancellor of the Social Sciences

Todd Landman is a Professor of Political Science and Pro Vice Chancellor of the Social Sciences at the University of Nottingham. He researches, teaches, and publishes on significant problems and methods associated with development, democracy and human rights. He received a BA in Political Science from the University of Pennsylvania in 1988, an MA in Latin American Studies from Georgetown University in 1990, an MA in Political Science from the University of Colorado in 1993, and his PhD in ...

Tim Luckhurst

Tim Luckhurst

Principal of South College

Tim is the founding Principal of South College, Durham University and Associate Pro Vice Chancellor Engagement. He is a newspaper historian, campaigner for press freedom and an academic member of the university's Centre for Modern Conflicts and Cultures. His research focuses on the depiction of dissent in British and American newspapers between 1936 and 1945. Tim has published in journals including Journalism Studies, Contemporary British History, George Orwell Studies, 1914-1918 Online, Ethi...

Karen O'Brien

Karen O'Brien

Head of the Humanities Division

Karen O'Brien is Head of the Humanities Division and Professor of English Literature at the University of Oxford. She is a Fellow of University College Oxford, and an Honorary Fellow of Peterhouse, Cambridge. She has published books and articles on the literary and intellectual history of eighteenth-century Britain and France, with a particular focus on the Enlightenment, Edward Gibbon, Thomas Robert Malthus and Jane Austen. Educated at Oxford, she held academic posts at Cambridge.

Richard Sambrook

Richard Sambrook

Professor of Journalism, Director of the Centre for Journalism

Richard Sambrook is Director of the Centre for Journalism and Professor at Cardiff University. He spent 30 years as a journalist in BBC News including ten years on the board of management as Director of Sport, Director of News and Director of Global News. He was also Global Vice Chairman of Edelman, where he was a consultant on media to numerous global organisations.

David Sampson

David Sampson

Vice-Provost, Research and Innovation

Professor David Sampson is the Vice-Provost, Research & Innovation, at the University of Surrey, where he is responsible for all areas of research and innovation, including the Doctoral College and the Surrey Research Park. David has nearly thirty years’ research experience in photonics, optics, and microscopy, and applications in communications and biomedicine. David has a strong interest in publishing and serves as Director of the SPIE – The International Society for Optics & Photonics.

Colin Scott

Colin Scott

Professor of EU Regulation and Governance

Colin Scott is Professor of EU Regulation and Governance at University College Dublin where he currently serves as Vice President for Equality, Diversity and Inclusion and Principal UCD College of Social Sciences and Law. His research encompasses issues of regulatory design and accountability, the regulation of government and transnational private regulation.

Katie Stevenson

Katie Stevenson

Vice-Principal Collections, Music and Digital Content

Professor Katie Stevenson is Vice-Principal (Collections, Music and Digital Content) at the University of St Andrews. Prior to this she was a Keeper at National Museums Scotland, CEO of Smart History, and Director of the Institute of Scottish Historical Research at St Andrews. She is currently Chair of the Scotland's Recognition Committee for Collections of National Significance. Professor Stevenson is a Fellow of the Royal Historical Society and the Royal Society of Arts.

Saul Tendler

Saul Tendler

Deputy Vice-Chancellor and Provost

Professor Saul Tendler is Deputy Vice-Chancellor and Provost at the University of York. An academic pharmacist, his research is directed towards biophysical investigation of bio-molecular systems and their interactions, primarily utilising atomic force microscopy. At York he is responsible for planning, partnerships and the international portfolio.

Gill Valentine

Gill Valentine

Gill Valentine is a professor of Geography and Pro-Vice Chancellor at the University of Sheffield where she is responsible for the Faculty of Social Sciences. Her research interests are focused on three interconnected areas: social identities and belonging; childhood, parenting and family life; and urban cultures and consumption. Gill has (co)authored/edited 15 books (with translations in Japanese, Chinese and Korean) and over 170 journal articles/reports.

Founder and Patrons   Back to Top

Andrew Jaspan

Andrew Jaspan

Founder

Andrew Jaspan is the creator and co-founder of The Conversation. He launched the project in Australia in 2011 and was instrumental in seeing it established in the UK and the US. The project was born out of concerns Andrew had about public access to reliable information amid a dramatic shift in the production and consumption of journalism internationally. Andrew has been Editor of The Observer, The Age (Melbourne), The Scotsman and the Sunday Herald (Glasgow).

Eric Thomas

Eric Thomas

Patron

Sir Eric Jackson Thomas is an academic who was Vice-Chancellor of the University of Bristol from 2001 to 2015. From 2003 to 2007, he was Chair of the Worldwide Universities Network and was the President of Universities UK from 2011 to 2013. He was knighted in the 2013 Birthday Honours for services to higher education.

Paul Curran

Paul Curran

President, City, University of London

A former NASA research scientist Professor Sir Paul Curran has been President of City, University of London since 2010. Before this he was Vice-Chancellor of Bournemouth University and DVC of University of Southampton. He is a Board member of London Higher and President of the Remote Sensing and Photogrammetry Society. He was Chair of the national Review Body on Doctors’ & Dentists’ Remuneration and the UCEA Board, and a member of NERC Council. He was knighted in the 2016 New Year Honours.