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24th June, 2015

David Sweeney

Director 
Higher Education Funding Council for England (HEFCE)

David Sweeney is Director (Research, Education and Knowledge Exchange). In this role he is responsible for research policy and funding (including the Research Excellence Framework), knowledge exchange and health policy. He is also responsible for the Catalyst Fund, the UK Research Partnership Investment Fund, and HEFCE’s international engagement. He works alongside Chris Millward (Director of Policy), who leads on education and skills.

A statistician, David worked at two BBSRC research institutes, developing mathematical models of plant growth before moving into senior management in the IT area, becoming Director of Information Services at Royal Holloway, University of London, and serving in a national role as Chair of the Universities and Colleges Information Systems Association. He became Vice-Principal (Communications, Enterprise and Research) in 2004, responsible for research strategy, the 2008 RAE submission and for developing Royal Holloway’s research-led commercial and consultancy activities, knowledge transfer and development programme. He joined HEFCE in 2008 as Director (Research, Innovation and Skills).

David was an adviser to the Australian Research Impact Pilot Exercise, and he has also visited many European countries and Hong Kong to advise on research assessment and funding. In 2012, he was a member of the Finch Group on Open Access to Research Outputs, and has been working with the research councils, charities, learned societies, other academic groups and publishers to take forward the Finch Group recommendations.

David was awarded an honorary doctorate from the University of Aberdeen in 2012 and is a Fellow of the Royal Statistical Society.


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