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Science Media Centre

Fiona Fox, the chief executive of the Science Media Centre, has a degree in journalism and many years of experience working in media relations for high profile national organisations. Her career includes stints working for, amongst others, the Equal Opportunities Committee, the National Council for One Parent Families, and CAFOD (a leading aid agency). The founding director of the Science Media Centre when it was established in 2002, under Fiona’s leadership the Centre has become an indispensable resource for science journalists in the UK. The Centre provides scientific context and comment from some of the UK’s top scientists for many major news stories thanks to the Centre’s media database, which has over 2300 such experts on it. Fiona is a regular commentator on science in the media and was the only representative from the scientific community invited to give evidence at the Levenson Inquiry into press standards in the UK in 2012. She is an outspoken champion for openness in science and, as part of this, led a successful campaign in 2017 for changes to the British Government’s purdah rules, ensuring government funded scientists are free to speak out during election periods. Fiona is also the author of Beyond the Hype: The inside story of science’s biggest media controversies. Published in April 2022, the book is part memoir of the first twenty years of the SMC, part manifesto for change – particularly the urgent need to separate communication of scientific research from government communications. Fiona has received many accolades for her services to science, including an OBE, honorary fellowships of the Royal Society, the Academy of Medical Sciences, the Royal Society of Biology and the British Pharmacology Society, and an honorary doctorate from the University of Bristol. She has received awards from the European College of Neuropsychopharmacology, the British Neuroscience Association, and the British Crop Production Council, and a special award from Understanding Animal Research for promoting openness in animal research.


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