Future leaders announced: FLIER cohort 2 programme launch

Future leaders announced: FLIER cohort 2 programme launch 

18 participants from organisations across the UK life sciences landscape have been chosen to join the second round of the highly competitive FLIER programme. The programme brings together future leaders from academia, the NHS, industry and policy organisations for a two-year, immersive and cross-sector learning experience.

The latest FLIER participants will follow in the footsteps of the first FLIER cohort who have just entered their second year and will be further developing their cross-sector leadership skills this year. For the first time, two cohorts of FLIER participants will be connected to share their learning and development.

Professor Martin Humphries FMedSci, chair of the FLIER programme development taskforce had this to say:

“It is a pleasure to welcome the second cohort of participants to our FLIER leadership programme. Like the first cohort (which incidentally has made outstanding progress over the past year!), the second group is highly diverse in terms of personal background and current sector role. This variation will contribute to the learning experience of all participants and help shape their future approaches to addressing pressing health challenges. The two cohorts will be connected to each other, as well as to current leaders, thereby creating a powerful leadership network for the health sector.”

Professor Sir Robert Lechler PMedSci, President of the Academy of Medical Sciences said:

“Congratulations to all the new FLIER participants! I firmly believe that this programme could not be more timely; as the UK seeks to sustain and indeed enhance its position in the life sciences internationally, and to counteract any threats posed by our departure from the EU, leadership that works effectively across NHS, academia and industry will be absolutely vital.”

Participants joining the FLIER programme this year are:

Dr Parveen Ali, Senior Lecturer, Health Sciences School, University of Sheffield
Dr Rasha Al-Lamee, Clinical Senior Lecturer, Imperial College London
Dr Cat Ball Head of Policy, Association of Medical Research Charities
Dr Giovanni Biglino, Senior Lecturer in Biostatistics, University of Bristol
Professor Tim Chico,
Professor of Cardiovascular Medicine and honorary Consultant Cardiologist, University of Sheffield
Dr Muireann Coen,
Associate Director, Oncology Safety, AstraZeneca
Dr Elizabeth Coulthard,
Associate Professor in Dementia Neurology, University of Bristol
Dr Michael Crichton, Assistant Professor in Biomedical Engineering, Heriot-Watt University
Dr Davide Danovi,
Director, Cell Phenotyping / Senior Research Fellow, King's College London
Professor Jason Gill, Professor of Cardiometabolic Health, University of Glasgow
Dr Gráinne Gorman, Senior Clinical Lecturer, Wellcome Centre for Mitochondrial Research, Newcastle University
Dr Ilaria Mirabile, Transformation Lead (Innovation, Treatment and Care), NHS England and NHS Improvement
Dr James Pickett, Director of Research and Innovation at Epilepsy Research UK
Professor Alison Pilnick, Professor of Language, Medicine and Society, University of Nottingham
Dr Elizabeth Sapey, Reader in Acute and Respiratory Medicine, University of Birmingham
Dr Reecha Sofat, Associate Professor, Clinical Pharmacologist, University College London
Dr Julia Wilson, Associate Director, Wellcome Trust Sanger Institute
Dr Paul Wright, Principal Scientist, LifeArc

Photos and short bios are available here

The new FLIER cohort has skills that are complementary, which will foster collaboration and help drive cross-sector working. The Academy’s unique position as a hub for medical sciences in the UK will afford FLIER participants access to diverse networks across the NHS, industry, policy organisations and beyond.

New FLIER participant Dr Muireann Coen of AstraZeneca is looking forward to the programme, saying:

“The FLIER programme attracted me as I see it as an opportunity to maximise upon my cross-sector appointment at Imperial College London and AstraZeneca.  It presents a unique development opportunity that will broaden my scientific network and provide me with the skill set needed to develop strong collaborative projects across the pharmaceutical and academic sectors.”

Dr Elizabeth Coulthard of the University of Bristol, also a new FLIER participant, said:

"I applied to the FLIER scheme because treating the brain diseases that lead to dementia will require working across sectors that are normally quite separate. I hope to learn how to break down barriers and generate innovative research that will improve quality of life for older people."

A participant of cohort 1 who started the programme last year, Dr Marc Vendrell from the University of Edinburgh, commented on his experiences:

“‘On the programme, it’s been great to meet a very diverse cohort of people… Now, I understand better what clinicians and policy-makers think, and this is essential for developing any new technology.”

Dr Jennifer Logue, from Lancaster University, also a cohort 1 participant, said:

“FLIER is teaching us to be different types of leaders. It’s about focusing on a clear and transparent vision. It’s also about ensuring everyone working on a project knows why they are there and what their role is.”

FLIER development and delivery is led by our taskforce, chaired by Professor Martin Humphries FMedSci in partnership with award-winning leadership consultants Cirrus. The FLIER programme is generously supported by the Dennis and Mireille Gillings Foundation and the UK Government through their Investment in Research Talent fund.

In the first year of the programme, the new FLIER participants will benefit from workshops, coaching, immersion into different workplaces and access to current scientific leaders. Meanwhile, the first cohort of FLIER future leaders will be entering their second year of the programme where they will undertake a collaborative work-based project with the support of their cohort, mentor and coaches.

For enquiries about the programme please contact FLIER@acmedsci.ac.uk. If you would like to support the work of the Academy to develop talented researchers, visit our Supporters page.

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