Prof James Wilsdon

James Wilsdon


University of Sussex 

Job title

Professor of Science and Democracy, Science Policy Research Unit (SPRU)



James Wilsdon is professor of science and democracy in the Science Policy Research Unit (SPRU) at the University of Sussex, and director of The Nexus Network, an ESRC-funded initiative to support joined-up research, policy and practice across food, energy, water and the environment. Since September 2013, he has been chair of the Campaign for Social Science, which works to make the case for UK social science with policymakers, the media and the wider public. 

In April 2014, James was asked by the Higher Education Funding Council for England (HEFCE) to chair an independent review of the role of metrics in research assessment, which will report in June 2015. More details about the review process can be found here.

His research interests include the role of evidence and expertise in policymaking; the politics and practice of scientific advice; interdisciplinarity, particularly between natural and social sciences; science and innovation policy in the UK, EU and China; and public engagement in research. From 2008 to 2011, he was founding director of the Science Policy Centre at the Royal Society, the UK’s national academy of sciences.