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Brian J Ford
Fellowship
Eastrea, Cambridgeshire
£75,000 over three years

“The best innovations tend to come from those with independent minds. They always have.”

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Brian Ford's personal website
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In brief

NESTA’s Fellowship will allow science communicator and Radio 4 and LBC broadcaster Brian J Ford to research recently neglected fields of science. By learning how to bring the most accurate information possible to the public on these crucial subjects, Brian will use his track record to make a new contribution to the science and education sectors.

Helping the public to understand science

Even as a student, Brian Ford established a different way of ‘doing’ science. His campaigning stance has influenced the way modern science works.

Leaving Cardiff University in his second year, he was running a successful independent laboratory by the time his classmates were graduating. He had a weekly newspaper column on science before he was a student, made his first radio appearance aged 21 and television appearance at 22. Meanwhile he was undertaking independent research.

He has since been made a Fellow of Cardiff University, and is a member of the University Court. Yet, some four decades later, this prolific, outspoken iconoclast still declines to conform. “All my life I have tried to act as a catalyst to cross boundaries, an agent of interdisciplinary innovation,” he says.

Known to many for his appearances on television, his own Radio 4 programme Science Now, for Science Hour on LBC and recently for his annual contributions to Round Britain Quiz, as well as his numerous articles and books, Brian has always been committed to helping the public to understand science.

Brian has previously received two Learning awards from NESTA. The first award helped him write a manual for a new computer microscope used in schools nationwide; the second contributed towards his work on a manual for digital camera use in schools, which built on the great success of the microscope project. Now Brian plans to look at the popularisation of science in the UK as part of his Fellowship.

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