Former MP Julian Huppert appointed director of new Cambridge centre
Former Cambridge MP Dr Julian Huppert has been appointed as the founding director of a new centre based in Jesus College.
The Intellectual Forum will be a world-class centre focusing on themes and problems of interest to communities across the world, including issues such as the future of work, how health and social care can be transformed over the coming decades, and what privacy means in a digital age. It will run a number of events, including some open to the public, to encourage robust debate about issues that affect everyone.
Dr Huppert joins Jesus College from the Cavendish Laboratory, where he was a University Lecturer working on science and technology policy and how best to use evidence to shape public policy. He has previously worked on how unusual shapes of DNA are involved in controlling gene activity. His work led to the identification of a large number of potential targets for anti-cancer drugs.
Dr Huppert said: “I am delighted and honoured to be given this role. This new centre will provide a huge opportunity to really think deeply and for the long-term about the issues that matter now and over the decades to come. I am very much looking forward to working with academics, students, and many others from around the world on a wide variety of subjects and events. This is a chance to make a difference.”
Master of Jesus College, Professor Ian White, said: “The aim is to provide a 21st century research environment for the College, with an outward- and forward-looking centre that fosters critical thinking and creative excellence and supports the growing importance of multidisciplinary activities and networking on a global level.
“The founding director will work with students, academics, alumni, and leaders across many fields from humanities to sciences, including governments, businesses, and charities. We were looking for someone who could work with others to identify topics important to our own time and the future, and build thematic programmes and discussions at the highest level.
“Julian Huppert is a polymath with an impressive track record and a huge range of relevant experience. We’re delighted that he will be joining Jesus College as the founding director of this centre.”
The Forum will be based in West Court, a new development in Jesus College with state-of-the-art facilities for symposia, conferences and research.