We are committed to ensuring that the outcomes of our research investment help maintain the UK’s research capability at an internationally competitive level. The most effective way of achieving this, alongside our commitment to peer review, is to ensure that we retain a national perspective.
These national goals for the UK’s science and engineering base are not contrary to regional needs and priorities. In fact, the Engineering and Physical Sciences Research Council (EPSRC) believes that our investments have a key role to play in enhancing research and innovation ecosystems at a regional level in order to ensure continued excellence at a national and international level.
Recognising this, EPSRC has sought to enhance and broaden its relationships with stakeholders across the UK through universities and business partnerships teams, and most recently through the introduction of the EPSRC heads of regional engagement (HRE).
Heads of regional engagement
The EPSRC HRE roles have been created to further our knowledge of the local research and innovation landscape across the UK. They focus on expanding our knowledge of emerging pockets of engineering and physical sciences excellence, and developing relationships with regional stakeholders to enhance EPSRC strategy development.
During an initial pilot phase of these roles, EPSRC placed four HREs strategically across the UK in the North West of England, Northern Ireland, Scotland and Wales, to act as focal points for engagement with our local stakeholders.
Due to the success of the pilot, further HRE appointments have been made across the UK, supported by our universities team to cover non-HRE regions.
Sinead Balgobin, Head of Regional Engagement West Midlands
Marie-Louise Cairns, Head of Regional Engagement Northern Ireland
Nick Cook, Head of Regional Engagement Wales
Alex Peden, Head of Regional Engagement Scotland
Natalie Jones, Head of Regional Engagement North West
Helen Niblock, Head of Regional Engagement North East, Yorkshire and Humber
Joe Shearring, Head of Regional Engagement East Midlands
Contact the team
For general university and business enquiries
Business and User Engagement Team
Last updated: 31 March 2022