Panel for plenary session on impact, excellence and beyond: Reframing the science-society relationship


Dr. Steven Hill

Steven Hill is Director of Research at Research England. Steven was formerly Head of Research Policy at the Higher Education Funding Council for England (HEFCE), and leads on all aspects of research policy and funding. Steven is responsible for research funding, including quality-related funding (QR), general capital funding and the UK Research Partnership Investment Fund (UKRPIF). He also leads Research England’s research assessment and policy work, and is the chair of the steering group for the 2021 Research Excellence Framework (REF). Policy responsibilities include research integrity, public engagement and open research, and Steven contributes to debates and discussions at home and overseas on the enhancement and assessment of research impact. His team also includes Research England’s analysis function.



Dr. Marc Zbinden

Dr. Marc Zbinden studied in Berne and obtained his PhD in Evolutionary Biology from the University of Bonn. A postdoc position on host-parasite co-evolution took him to the Universities of Fribourg and Basel. After four postdoc years, Marc changed lanes and got hired at the Swiss National Science Foundation. He started in 2005 in the management of the project funding in Biology & Medicine. In 2008, he became assistant of the Head of division with more policy and management related tasks. In parallel, he followed an MPA programme at the IDHEAP in Lausanne. Since 2014, Marc manages the SNSF team responsible for the National Centres of Competence in Research.


Dr. Diana Hicks

Dr. Diana Hicks is a Professor in the School of Public Policy, Georgia Institute of Technology specializing in metrics for science and technology policy. She was the first author on the Leiden Manifesto for research metrics published in Nature, which has been translated into 24 languages and won the 2016 Ziman award of the European Association for the Study of Science and Technology (EASST) for collaborative promotion of public interaction with science and technology. Her work has informed policymakers in the U.S., Europe and Japan. She has advised the OECD, Flanders, the Czech Republic, and Sweden on national research evaluation systems. She chaired the School of Public Policy for 10 years and currently co-chairs the international Atlanta Conference on Science and Innovation Policy and has been an editor of Research Evaluation. Prof. Hicks has also taught at the Haas School of Business at the University of California, Berkeley; SPRU, University of Sussex, and worked at NISTEP in Tokyo. She earned her D.Phil and M.Sc. from SPRU, University of Sussex.  In 2018 she was elected fellow of the American Association for the Advancement of Science (AAAS) for “distinguished contributions to the evaluation of national and international research and development enterprises, and for outstanding leadership in science and technology policy education.”