Chair in Materials Physics and Innovation Policy & Associate Vice-President for Innovation and Regional Economic Development
Richard is an experimental soft matter physicist at the University of Manchester. His first degree and PhD in Physics both come from Cambridge University. Following postdoctoral work at Cornell University, USA, he was a lecturer at the University of Cambridge’s Cavendish Laboratory, before moving to Sheffield in 1998. In 2006 he was elected a Fellow of the Royal Society, in recognition of his work in the field of polymers and biopolymers at surfaces and interfaces, and in 2009 he won the Tabor Medal of the UK’s Institute of Physics for his contributions to nanoscience. He was appointed to a new Chair in Materials Physics and Innovation Policy at the University of Manchester in January 2020.
He is the author of more than 190 research papers, and three books, Polymers at Surfaces and Interfaces (with Randal Richards, CUP 1999), Soft Condensed Matter, (OUP 2002), and Soft Machines: Nanotechnology and Life (OUP 2004).
He was Pro-Vice-Chancellor for Research and Innovation at Sheffield from 2009 to 2016, was a member of EPSRC Council from 2013 – 2018, and chaired Research England’s Technical Advisory Group for the Knowledge Exchange Framework. He has written extensively about science and innovation policy, and was a member of the Sheffield/Manchester Industrial Strategy Commission. He was a Visiting Research Fellow at CSAP in 2016/17.