Press release

FCO Chief Scientific Adviser announced

Professor Carole Mundell announced as the new Chief Scientific Adviser at the Foreign and Commonwealth Office.

Carole Mundell

Professor Carole Mundell becomes the third person and first woman to hold the position of Chief Scientific Adviser (CSA) at the FCO and succeeds Professor Robin Grimes. As well as being the new Chief Scientific Adviser she will also continue in her role as Professor of Extragalactic Astronomy at Bath University.

The FCO Chief Scientific Adviser represents UK science interests internationally, using science relationships to deliver the UK’s foreign policy priorities. She will work closely with the UK’s Science and Innovation Network to facilitate links between British and international scientists to drive future economic growth; tackle global challenges such as Anti-Microbial Resistance, Patient Safety, girls’ education and to support the conservation and sustainable use of the Ocean.

Speaking on her appointment, Professor Mundell said;

Science is an international endeavour and is most effective when it draws on diverse talent to push the frontier of knowledge and tackle the biggest challenges facing our planet. I am honoured to have been appointed FCO CSA and am excited to work with the UK’s Science and Innovation Network and add value to the FCO’s prosperity and security work around the world.

Professor Bernie Morley, Acting Vice-Chancellor at the University of Bath said;

We are delighted at Professor Mundell’s appointment and very proud of the work she continues to do here at the University of Bath. Carole is an outstanding scientist and a truly superb ambassador for science. She will bring considerable experience and a gift for leadership and communication to her role with the FCO.

Dr Patrick Vallance, the Government Chief Scientific Adviser said;

I would like to congratulate Professor Carole Mundell on her appointment as Chief Scientific Adviser (CSA) to the Foreign and Commonwealth Office. Carole brings with her a wealth of experience and will be a real asset to the FCO helping build international science cooperation to take on some of the global challenges we face such as AMR and girl’s education. I look forward to working with her and she is a valuable addition to the network of CSA’s across government.

Notes to editors

  • Professor Mundell studied at the University of Glasgow where she gained a BSc in Physics before working at the Jodrell Bank Observatory, University of Manchester, where she completed a PhD in Astrophysics. She later moved to the University of Maryland before joining Liverpool John Moores University, where she received her first professorship in 2007.

  • Professor Mundell sits on a number of strategic advisory panels for UK and international groups. She is a recipient of the Royal Society Wolfson Research Merit Award (2011 to 2016) for the study of black hole-driven explosions and the dynamic Universe and was also selected FDM Everywoman in Technology Woman of the Year (2016).

  • The role of Chief Scientific Adviser (CSA) varies greatly depending on the principal function of their host department. The CSA Network is overseen by the Government Chief Scientific Adviser Dr Patrick Vallance -

  • The Science and Innovation Network (SIN) comprises over 100 science attaches in over 40 countries working out of British Embassies, High Commissions and Consulates overseas. They work to deliver HMG’s global Prosperity, Security, Influence and International Development objectives. For further information on SIN visit:

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Published 10 October 2018