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In order to support the Nuffield Department of Medicine in seeking out new opportunities for innovation and delivering impact across its 24 units, Prof Richard Cornall, the Head of Department, has appointed Prof Bountra in a new role within NDM Strategic.

In a changing world, where funding for research is shifting away from traditional sources towards partnerships with industry, philanthropy and venture capital, delivering impact and innovation are crucial for NDM to maintain its leading position.  

The creation of this role is intended to ensure that NDM’s strategy for innovation is aligned with the wider University and that a culture of innovation is further embedded within the department. The Head of Impact and Innovation will support junior staff and principal investigators across NDM in training and developing the full potential of their outputs by joining them up to the departmental, divisional and university innovation infrastructure. The aim is to identify new opportunities for commercial development and industrial partnerships across NDM, ensuring that the department, the university, and the city of Oxford become the destination of choice for investment and partnership.

Prof Bountra is Pro Vice-Chancellor for Innovation at the University of Oxford, as well as Professor of Translational Medicine at the Nuffield Department of Medicine and an Associate Member of the Department of Pharmacology. He is an invited expert on several government and charitable research funding bodies, and an advisor for many academic, biotech and pharma drug discovery programmes. In 2018, he was awarded the “Order of the British Empire” in the New Year’s Honours list.

Prof Richard Cornall said: 'The Nuffield Department of Medicine is at a pivotal moment in its nearly 90-year history. We want to emulate and deepen some of the successful and fruitful partnerships we have established over the past few years, such as with AstraZeneca on the COVID vaccine and GSK on the launch of the Oxford-GSK Institute of Molecular and Computational Medicine’ . This will ensure that all of our units’ cutting-edge research is delivering real-world clinical impact for patients across the world, as well as being financially sustainable for the long term. I’m grateful that Chas, with his significant experience from both academia and industry, has taken on this exciting new role to help the department live up to its full potential.'

Prof Bountra said: 'Ever since returning to Oxford many years ago, I have always aimed to support the interests of the university and the department. I have always been personally invested in the success of the department, and in this new role I want to help colleagues in NDM, other departments in the Medical Science Division and across the university. NDM’s global footprint is unique among departments of medicine anywhere in the world, and in collaboration with industrial partners, we have the opportunity and potential to develop life-changing clinical innovations which will help not only patients in the UK but save millions of lives in low and middle-income countries.'