About us:


Comprises the Chair, the Chief Executive and 17 other members at least half of whom are appointed for their qualification in science and engineering. Users of research, in Government and industry, are also represented.

Members are appointed by the Secretary of State for Innovation, Universities and Skills.

Meeting dates and minutes


Professor Sir Tom Blundell FRS – Chair

See Chair's biography.

Professor Sir David Baulcombe FRS – Academic

David Baulcombe

David Baulcombe was a student in Botany at Leeds and Edinburgh Universities. After periods in Montreal, the University of Georgia and the Cambridge Plant Breeding Institute he spent 20 years at the Sainsbury Laboratory, Norwich. He joined Cambridge University in 2007 as Royal Society Research Professor and now as Regius Professor of Botany.

David Baulcombe is a molecular biologist and his research interest in plants focuses on how genes can be silenced. He has recently moved into the field of epigenetics – the science of how nurture can influence nature. This research links diverse topics including disease resistance in plants and understanding of hybrid crops. David is a poor field botanist.

Dr Neil Brewis – Industry/User

Dr Neil Brewis

Neil Brewis is Vice President, Head of Biopharmaceutical Research in GSK. Neil has an established career working in bioscience, demonstrating leadership in translating basic research into clinical studies.

Before joining GSK, Neil was Head of Research at Domantis Ltd with responsibility for discovery and technology work on human domain antibodies. Domantis was acquired by GSK in 2007. Prior to joining Domantis in 2002, he was a research associate at Phogen, a joint venture between Marie Curie Cancer Care and the Xenova Group, which exploited the gene therapy and protein delivery potential of the transporting properties of the HSV VP22 protein. From 1994 to 1997 he was at University of California, San Diego researching signal transduction in cancer. He has a PhD from Dundee University in Biochemistry on protein dephosphorylation.

Professor Richard Cogdell – Academic

Richard Codgell

Richard Cogdell was a biochemistry student at Bristol University where he also stayed on to do his PhD. He then spent a period of post doctoral research in the US, initially at Cornell University and then at the University of Washington in Seattle. In 1975 he returned to a lectureship at the University of Glasgow where he has stayed ever since. He is currently the Hooker Professor of Botany and Director of Institute of Molecular, Cell & Systems Biology. He was elected to the Royal Society in 2007. Most of Richard's research has been trying to understand the structure and function of the pigment protein complexes that carry out the very earliest light reactions in photosynthesis. In this work he has used purple photosynthetic bacteria as model organisms with which it is just much easier than using plants.

Professor Margaret Dallman – Academic

Professor Margaret Dallman

Professor Maggie Dallman is Dean (since 2008) of the Faculty of Natural Sciences and Professor of Immunology at Imperial College London. Maggie joined Imperial College in 1994 having previously trained at the University of Oxford and Stanford University, USA. Maggie's research work has focused on understanding deleterious immune and inflammatory reactions and has variously employed cell culture, mouse and human models and materials. Her group's current interests focus on the use of zebrafish as a model organism for studies in immunity, inflammation and infectious diseases. Using this and other model organisms she is interested in applying systems approaches to the study of innate immune signalling and using whole body imaging approaches to gain molecular insight in immunity and inflammation.

Maggie participates in a broad range of external activities. She currently is a Trustee and Director of the Francis Crick Institute, sits on the Scientific Advisory Board of the Institute for Animal Health, is a member of the NC3Rs Board, sits on the HEFC Research and Knowledge Exchange Strategy Advisory Committee and helps a variety of charities with their research funding portfolios.

Professor Russell Foster CBE FRS – Academic

Russell Foster

Russell Foster is Professor of Circadian Neuroscience; Head of the Nuffield Laboratory of Ophthalmology; Director of the Sleep and Circadian Neuroscience Institute; and a Fellow of Brasenose College, University of Oxford. Russell’s research interests are focused upon the fundamental neuroscience of vertebrate sleep and circadian rhythms (24h body clocks), and the impact on human health when these systems are disrupted. For his discoveries in this area of neuroscience Russell was elected as a Fellow of the Royal Society in 2008. Russell is a strong proponent of the public awareness of science, and has authored three popular science books. He is currently the Chair of the Cheltenham Science Festival.

Russell studied Zoology at Bristol University, remaining in Bristol for his PhD and first Post-Doc. He moved to the University of Virginia in 1988, returning to the UK and Imperial College in 1995. In 2006 he moved his research team to Oxford. Russell received a CBE in the Queen's New Years Honours 2015 for Services to Science.

Professor Carole Goble CBE FREng FBCS CITP – Academic

Professor Carole Goble. University of Manchester

Professor Carole Goble CBE FREng FBCS CITP is Professor of Computer Science at The University of Manchester, UK. Over the past 25 years she has pursued research interests in the acceleration of scientific innovation through: distributed computing, workflows and automation; knowledge management and the Semantic Web; social, virtual environments; software engineering for scientific software; and new models of scholarship for data-intensive science. Since 2001 she has directed a large, mixed team of researchers, computational scientists and software engineers that specialise in e-Science. She is responsible for many widely used open source e-Science software and she has been a strong advocate for putting software innovations into real practice. She co-founded the UK’s Open Middleware Infrastructure Institute and the Software Sustainability Institute UK.

She is leading activities in European e-Infrastructure for Life Sciences including Deputy Director of the UK’s ELIXIR Node and WG leader for data/model management of ESFRI ISBE - Infrastructure Systems Biology Europe. In 2008 she was awarded the Microsoft Jim Gray e-Science award for contributions to e-Science. Carole received a CBE in the Queen’s New Years Honours 2014 for Services to Science.

Mr Jim Godfrey OBE – Industry/User

Jim Godfrey

Jim Godfrey is an arable and pig farmer from Lincolnshire. Jim is a non executive director of the Rural Payments Agency and Lincolnshire Rural Support Network, chairman of the Technology Strategy Board Sustainable agriculture and Food Innovation Platform, a member of: The Commercial Farmers Group, Centre for Excellence in UK Farming, Nuffield Farming Scholarship Selection Panel, Consultative Group on International Agricultural Research (CGIAR) Board Training Programme. Jim is a former chairman of; The Potato Marketing Board, Scottish Crop Research Institute, Sentry Farming Group plc, the International Potato Centre and the Alliance of the 15 Research Centres of the CGIAR.

Dr Mike Goosey – Industry/User

Mike Goosey

Mike is a bioenergy and industrial biotechnology consultant. He is a board member of BioSyntha, on the advisory board of Algenuity and an honorary Professor in Sustainable Bioenergy at the University of Nottingham. Mike previously worked for Shell with extensive R&D experience in the chemicals, refinery and downstream activities where he latterly served as Global Manager for Shell's R&D Biofuels Programme in Shell’s Alternative Energies business. He had close relationships with many biotechnology start-ups such as Iogen, Codexis, and Cellana.

Mike has a PhD in Biochemistry from the University of Birmingham and was a Parkinson's Disease Research Fellow, before joining Dow Chemical Company where he worked for 6 years in the Agrochemical Business. He then joined Shell Research Ltd at Sittingbourne Research Centre where he was responsible for the biochemical and molecular biology team involved in the molecular design of agrochemicals. Mike was made a Fellow of the Royal Society of Chemistry in 2007.

Mr David Gregory – Industry/User

David Gregory

David has a portfolio of non executive roles in food and science related businesses and organisations. These include chairman of Assured Food Standards whose Red Tractor kitemark underpins the quality and safety of the UK’s farm and food production, non executive director of Boparan Holdings (2 Sisters Food Group), a multinational chilled food business and chairman of the British Nutrition foundation.

David is also a visiting professor at the University of Reading Centre for Food Security and a Fellow of the Institute of Food Science and Technology.

Before developing this portfolio, David spent 26 years working for Marks & Spencer from where he retired as Technical Director in 2009. During his time at M&S he was instrumental in a number of nutrition, innovation and sustainability initiatives and was one of the co-authors of Plan A – the widely recognised industry leading eco plan.

Professor Sarah Gurr – Academic

Professor Sarah Gurr

Professor Sarah Gurr was the first woman President of the British Society for Plant Pathology and is Professor of Molecular Plant Pathology at the Department of Plant Sciences, University of Oxford. Having authored or co-written 98 research papers and articles, her work reflects a desire to understand the basic mechanisms of pathogenicity in fungi with the strategic goal of controlling fungal disease and applied research in the testing of antifungals. This research has been driven by an interest in the grand challenge of food security. Professor Gurr is committed to public engagement, regularly giving Public Awareness and Understanding of Science (PAUS) lectures that have reached thousands of non-specialist audiences including both school children and adults.

Professor Jackie Hunter – BBSRC Chief Executive

See Chief Executive's biography.

Professor Judith Petts CBE, AcSS, FRGS – Academic

Judith Petts

Judith is Pro-Vice-Chancellor (Research and Enterprise) at the University of Southampton and holds the Chair in Environmental Risk Management. Prior to joining Southampton (2010) she was Pro-Vice-Chancellor at the University of Birmingham. A geographer by training (Exeter, 1975) she has had an intensely interdisciplinary research career working on understanding risk perception and improving communication and engagement particularly at the science-society-policy interface. Judith has run and also evaluated multiple pubic engagement programmes around contentious issues. She has worked across multiple risk areas – health, environment (e.g. flooding, climate change), industrial pollution, waste management, and safety. Judith is a member of Defra's Science Advisory Council, chairs the Social Science Expert Panel of Defra and DECC, is co-chair of the BIS Sciencewise Steering Group. She was a member of the Royal Commission on Environmental Pollution (2005-11), and the Council of NERC (2000-2006). She has held multiple advisory roles in relation to the science-society interface including on EPSRC's Societal Issues Panel and the Royal Society's Science in Society Consultative Group.

Professor David Richardson – Academic

David Richardson

David Richardson is Pro Vice Chancellor for Research, Enterprise and Engagement and Professor of Microbial Biochemistry at the University of East Anglia (UEA) on the Norwich Research Park. He is also a member BBSRC Council. His research group is active in the area of bacterial bioenergetics, particularly with regard to the respiratory reactions of the nitrogen and iron cycles. This encompasses the study of soil bacteria such as Paracoccus denitrificans, food-borne pathogens such as Salmonella Typhimurium and bacteria involved in mineral metal reduction such as Shewanella oneidensis. His work shed important light on the mechanism of greenhouse gase production by bacteria and the molecular basis of the function of bacterial nanowires.

Professor Helen Sang – Academic

Helen Sang

Helen Sang received a degree in Natural Sciences and PhD in genetics from Cambridge University. Helen was awarded a SERC-NATO fellowship to join Professor Matt Meselson's lab at Harvard University then returned to the UK on an MRC Training Fellowship held in the Department of Molecular Biology, University of Edinburgh, where she investigated transposable elements ("jumping genes") in the fruit fly Drosophila.

Professor Sang was then appointed as Principal Investigator at the AFRC Poultry Research Centre, now The Roslin Institute and most recently part of the Royal (Dick) School for Veterinary Sciences at the University of Edinburgh. Her main research focus at The Roslin Institute has been the development of technologies for genetic modification of the chicken, which are applied in basic biomedical research, biotechnology and investigating the potential for developing disease resistance in production chickens. Professor Sang is involved in public engagement activities to explain and discuss the use of genetic modification in farm animals. Professor Sang's research is currently funded by the Biotechnology and Biological Sciences Research Council, Medical Research Council, the Wellcome Trust and industry.

Dr Will West – Industry/User

Will West

Dr Will West is Chief Executive of CellCentric Ltd., a biotechnology company focused on epigenetics. He has been responsible for building the company from a world class scientific base through to multiple commercial deals. He gained his BSc (Hons) in Microbiology in 1989 from the University of Newcastle upon Tyne, going to complete a PhD in Virology/Immunology in 1992, sponsored by Unilever (UniPath). Will carried out post-doctoral research focused on antibodies and MHC proteins at the National Institute of Biology Standards and Control, going on to spend 7 years at Procter & Gamble in their Healthcare division, ultimately responsible for clinical development programmes in North America, Europe, Africa and China.

Will has spent the last 10 years in the biotechnology sector in executive and consultancy roles across different product classes, all with a strong emphasis on technology transfer and early stage development. Will has a Masters degree in Clinical Research (University of Wales, Cardiff) and an MBA from London Business School. Recent prior appointments include Chair of the Emerging Companies Network for the BioIndustry Association and committee member of the Bioscience Sector Skills Group, SEMTA.

Professor Tim Wheeler – Government User

Tim Wheeler

Tim Wheeler is currently Professor of Crop Science at the University of Reading and Deputy Chief Scientific Adviser for the UK Department for International Development. For more than 20 years he has published extensively on how climate change could impact on the sustainability of agriculture and food. Tim has provided advice on the sustainability of food and farming to agri-businesses and food multi-nationals, often up to Board level. He has extensive experience of working with policy-makers in the UK and internationally, providing information and advice to Ministers and acting as Specialist Adviser to the House of Lords in 2010. In 2005 he gave the prestigious Royal Society Public Lecture on ‘Growing crops in a changing climate’. Tim joined BBSRC Council in April 2012.

Meeting dates and minutes

Minutes and agendas for the past 3 years can be found below. If you would like to view minutes and/or agendas older than 3 years, please contact us using the details below.


23 March

14-15 June

28 September

7 December


25 March

24-25 June

30 September

2 December


19 March

17-18 June

30 September

10 December


12-13 March

11-12 June

24-25 September

3-4 December


6-7 March

3-4 July

2 October

11 December