FLIER round 3 participants

Meet the third cohort who are taking part in FLIER, our cross-sector leadership programme:


Dr Rubina Ahmed, Director of Research, Policy and Services, Blood Cancer UK
(Job title at the start of the programme: Dr Rubina Ahmed, Associate Director for Systems Engagement, Stroke Association)

Dr Rubina Ahmed is the Associate Director for Systems Engagement at the Stroke Association where she is responsible for a wide portfolio of activities, including research funding, policy, public affairs and campaigns, health inequalities, international engagement and broader objectives around working in partnership with system decision-makers at the local and national level. Rubina’s team work collaboratively with NHS England to support the delivery of the stroke ambitions in the NHS England Long-term plan, and she is a member of the Stroke Delivery Programme Board. Her team also lead on building partnerships with other funders and charities across the sector.

Rubina holds a PhD in Immunology and an MSc in Management and has a background in scientific research funding, strategy and management. She has worked in both the public and charity sector for a number of years, including with the Wellcome Trust and Cancer Research UK, working across a range of areas from fundamental and translational research through to clinical trials regulation and delivery.

Alongside her work at the Stroke Association she is a Council Member of the British Science Association. She is also the UK Board Member for the Stroke Alliance for Europe.


Professor Alex Casson, Professor of Biomedical Engineering, University of Manchester
(Job title at the start of the programme: Dr Alex Casson, Reader (Associate Professor), Department of Electrical and Electronic Engineering, University of Manchester)

Alex Casson is a Professor of Biomedical Engineering at the University of Manchester; Bioelectronics technology platform lead for the EPSRC Henry Royce Institute for advanced materials; Visiting Reader in the School of Medicine at the University of Leeds (2022-2024); Honorary Reader in the Medical Physics Department at Northern Care Alliance NHS Foundation Trust (2022-2024); and previously a Fellow of the Alan Turing Institute for data science and artificial intelligence (2021-2023). 

His research focuses on non-invasive bioelectric interfaces: the design and application of wearable sensors, and skin-conformal flexible sensors, for human body monitoring and data analysis from highly artefact prone naturalistic situations. He is best know for his work on wearable devices, spanning from hardware for flexible electronics to signal processing and analysing the 100,00+ wearable accelerometer records in the UK Biobank; and for wearables for non-invasive brain interfacing. Applications of his work include in Long COVID Autism, Chronic Pain, and Rehabilitation. 


Professor Joan Condell, Professor of Intelligent Technologies, Ulster University
(Job title at the start of the programme: Professor Joan Condell, School of Computing, Engineering and Intelligent Systems, Ulster University)