We are delighted to welcome Dr Caroline Kenny, UCL and Social Science Advisor at the Parliamentary Office of Science and Technology and Alun Evans, Chief Executive of the British Academy to give keynote addresses to close our conference.
As Social Sciences Advisor at POST, Caroline Kenny leads a research programme to study the use of research evidence within parliamentary debate and scrutiny, including the impact of POST. In her talk she will reveal the role that social sciences research currently plays in parliamentary activity, outline ways in which social scientists should look to engage with parliamentarians and will tell us more about the recent report investigating how research evidence is used in Parliament.
Alun Evans, Chief Executive of the British Academy, the UK’s national body for the humanities and social sciences, will advocate for the positive role that social sciences research can play in making a difference in society and the economy, relating this to current challenges and socio-political context with some lessons for researchers to take forward.
Dr Caroline Kenny, Social Science Adviser for the Parliamentary Office of Science and Technology
Caroline Kenny is seconded full time to the UK Parliamentary Office of Science and Technology (POST) as a social science adviser. This position is funded by the Economic and Social Research Council. At POST, Caroline leads a research programme to study the use of research evidence within parliamentary debate and scrutiny, including the impact of POST.
Prior to joining POST, Caroline worked for the Evidence for Policy and Practice Information and Co-ordinating Centre (EPPI-Centre) at the Institute of Education, University of London. Here, she worked on two European Commission funded projects studying the use of research in education policy and practice and has supported policy-makers and practitioners from across the UK and Europe to use research in their decision making.
Caroline has a PhD in Political Science from the University of Birmingham, an MA in Research Methods from the University of Birmingham and an MA in Public Administration and Public Policy from the University of York.
Alun Evans, Chief Executive of the British Academy
Alun Evans has been Chief Executive of the British Academy since July 2015.
Prior to his appointment as British Academy Chief Executive, Alun was Director of the Scotland Office, which represents Scottish interests in the UK government and the UK government in Scotland.
Before taking up his role as head of the Scotland Office, Alun was Secretary of the Detainee Inquiry from 2010 to 2012, and prior to that, Head of Strategy at the Department for Business, Innovation and Skills (BIS), Director-General in the Department for Innovation, Universities and Skills (DIUS) and Director-General (Transformation) in the Department for Communities and Local Government (DCLG). He has also been Principal Private Secretary to three Secretaries of State and worked as Head of Strategic Communications at 10 Downing Street and as Director of Communications to the former Deputy Prime Minister.
Alun was born in 1958. After his first degree in Government at Essex University, he took an MPhil in Politics and Russian Studies at the University of Birmingham and is currently working towards a PhD in Modern Political History at Queen Mary, University of London.
He is also an Associate at the Institute for Government where he has contributed to a range of Institute projects, including on government transitions, policy making and communication.