Press release

Preferred candidate chosen for BBSRC Chair

This news article was published under the 2010 to 2015 Conservative and Liberal Democrat coalition government

Professor Sir Gordon Duff has been selected as the government’s preferred candidate to be the Chair of the BBSRC.

Professor Sir Gordon Duff has been selected as the government’s preferred candidate to be the Chair of the Biotechnology and Biological Sciences Research Council (BBSRC).

Sir Gordon Duff is Principal of St Hilda’s College Oxford.

The current BBSRC Chair, Sir Tom Blundell, steps down at the end of June 2015.

The House of Commons Science and Technology Select Committee will hold a pre-appointment hearing on 2 March 2015 and report on Professor Sir Gordon Duff’s suitability for this post.

Notes to editors

  1. The Biotechnology and Biological Sciences Research Council (BBSRC) invests in world-class bioscience research and training on behalf of the UK public. Its aim is to further scientific knowledge, to promote economic growth, wealth and job creation and to improve quality of life in the UK and beyond. Funded by government, and with an annual budget of around £484 million (2013 to 2014), it supports research and training in universities and strategically funded institutes. BBSRC research and the people it funds are helping society to meet major challenges, including food security, green energy and healthier, longer lives. Its investments underpin important UK economic sectors, such as farming, food, industrial biotechnology and pharmaceuticals.
  2. Pre-appointment scrutiny hearings enable Select Committees to take evidence from candidates for certain key public appointments before they are appointed. Hearings are in public and involve the Select Committee publishing a report setting out their views on the candidate’s suitability for a post. Pre-appointment hearings are non-binding but ministers will consider the committee’s views before deciding whether to proceed with the appointment.
  3. The Chairs of the all of the Research Councils are listed as posts suitable for pre-appointment hearings. That list was published in the government’s response to the Liaison Committee’s First Special Report of Session 2007 to 2008 Liaison Committee, First Special Report of Session 2007 to 2008, Pre-appointment hearings by Select Committees: Government Response, HC 594.