Meet the team

Research and Innovation create and sustain opportunities for LSE to carry out world-leading social science. We maximise the quality, reach and impact of LSE's research.


We are LSE's central administrative body, here to help our academic community in all areas of funded research activity

All of our staff work in a blended way - dividing their time between on-campus and remote working. Please direct your query to the relevant member of our team via email or MS Teams, or contact us via

Organogram (click image to expand)


David Coombe - Director


As Director of Research and Innovation, David is responsible for a team that manage all aspects of externally-funded research, the REF and HEIF. Previously he was director of Research Services at Kent, head of administration at the Kent Business School, and held various posts at the University of Kent and Swansea University.

At various times he has been an RAE2008 panel secretary, a member of the HEFCE/JISC-funded RMAS project, and a QAA institutional audit secretary.
David is motivated by a drive for great service delivery, and committed to professional development, through conference, training opportunities, and professional education.

As a long-time branch coordinator for the AUA at Kent, he was a member of the first cohort to complete the AUA/OU PG certificate in professional practice, and was awarded the MBA in Higher Education Management at the Institute of Education in 2012.

Under the directorship of David Coombe, the following four teams offer support to research-active staff.


Research Development Team

  • Aims to increase funding application activity to externally peer reviewed funding sources and the quality of applications against funders’ strategies.
  • Supports LSE staff with their grant applications and liaises with internal parties for approval of proposals and external parties for contractual negotiations and agreements.
  • Assists in developing grant-writing skills.

Get a feel for the core services we offer in our Research Development infographic or download our detailed service standards.  

Meet the Research Development Team

Grace 2023 update

Grace McConnell - Head of Research Development and acting Deputy Director

Grace joined LSE in March 2020 as Head of Research Development.

Grace has an MSc in Ecology, Evolution and Conservation from Imperial College London. She is passionate about climate change, the environment and international development issues. Her focus in leading the Research Development Team is to get the best out of people in all aspects of her role; across academics in our departments, centres and institutes, and research support staff.

Prior to joining LSE, Grace was Research Development Team Manager at the University of Westminster and before that, Tender Support Team Leader at the Centre for Ecology & Hydrology (now UK-CEH). She supported a range of disciplines in furthering their research strategies at individual, group and organisational level including environmental sciences, micro-economists, media policy experts and psychologists to name a few. Through these roles she gained the research development, professional and managerial skills to support research at LSE.



Julia Howse - Research Development Manager

As Research Development Manager, Julia's role includes supporting academic colleagues in developing and submitting research proposals.

Prior to joining LSE, she worked at the Guildhall School of Music & Drama, and at King’s College London, supporting research applications in a number of fields. Her earlier experience includes supporting the basic science funding committees at the Wellcome Trust.



Barbara Kolaric - Research Development Administrator

Barbara joined Research and Innovation in August 2019, as the Committees and Governance Manager in the Division’s Policy Team. In that role, she was primarily responsible for coordinating activities and meetings of the School’s Research Committee, its working groups and sub-committees, while supporting the Research Development Team (RDT) part-time. Her role with the RDT became full-time in March 2022.

Prior to joining LSE, she worked as Policy Manager for the American Chamber of Commerce in Croatia, and has held various positions in the Croatian public administration in the area of research and innovation policy, planning of calls and evaluation of innovative projects to be funded using EU Structural and Investment Funds and grant funding of technology transfer activities at Croatian universities.

She is also an LSE graduate, having completed the MSc in Politics and Government in the European Union at the European Institute in 2013.


Aygen 2023 update

Aygen Kurt-Dickson - Research and Innovation Strategy Manager

Aygen has a PhD in Innovation Studies (a multidisciplinary field of sociology, politics and STS) which she studied as a Jean Monnet scholar, partially funded by the European Commission. She has a background in Political Science and Public Administration (BSc) and Science and Technology Policy Studies (MSc).

Before joining LSE, she worked part-time as a research support officer, and as research fellow in an EU FP7 project researching on ethical/social implications and governance of technological development process.

Her research interests on the EU’s research and innovation policy, innovation governance, the formation of the European Research Area, and how socio-political integration can be enhanced via innovation activity at sectoral and national levels, led her to engage more with research funding in a wider context of policy landscape.

Connect with Aygen on LinkedIn.


Anouska Nithyanandan bio pic

Anouska Nithyanandan - Research Development Manager

Anouska joined Research and Innovation in May 2017. She offers LSE academics strategic advice and support to develop successful research proposals that secure grant funding from a range of UK and international funders.

Anouska’s first-hand experience of academia gives her a valuable insight into what it takes to translate great research ideas into highly successful grant applications.

Anouska has a first class MEng degree in Mechanical Engineering and Business Management from the University of Warwick, and a PhD in Biomaterials Engineering from University College London.

Prior to joining LSE, Anouska worked as an academic at UCL where she sourced and secured significant grant funding for her own research and that of her team, and worked alongside academic partners and industry to build collaborative research projects. She is therefore particularly interested in high impact interdisciplinary research that draws together social science with STEM subjects, as well as supporting early career researchers with their first grant applications. 


Chelsea Oware 2023 update

Chelsea Oware - Research Development Administrator

Chelsea supports the Team's Research Development and Grant Application Managers across various areas including Philosophy, Psychology, Mathematics and European Institute.

Chelsea has an MSc in Social Research Methods from LSE and a BA in Politics and International Relations from the University of Nottingham. She has a range of passions and interests from intersectional feminism, academic decolonisation and social movement theory, to musical theatre, visual arts and 90s RnB and Hip Hop. In her free time, Chelsea is a visual artist interested in abstract artwork.

Prior to joining LSE’s Research Development Team, Chelsea worked as a researcher at Executive Search firm Odgers Berndtson in the Higher Education practice, learning the ins and outs of the Higher Education landscape from an external perspective. She has also worked with organisations such as the Electoral Reform Society, UNESCO and the Centre for African Studies in Turin.



Henna Patel - Research Development Manager

Henna joined LSE in December 2022 as a Research Development Manager. This role builds on her previous experience working in research development at the University of Westminster and the University of Reading. Henna has also worked as a Policy Manager at the Economic and Social Research Council, giving her a unique insight into the way funders work. Henna maintains a keen interest in politics, since completing an MA in European Politics and a BA in Political Science and Philosophy. 



Dorota Rejman - Grant Applications Manager

Dorota joined Research and Innovation in 2007. She holds an Msc in International Finance and Accounting from LSE and is a qualified accountant. She excels in supporting LSE faculty in their pursuit of funding in the UK and internationally, providing an interface between applicants and funders throughout the contractual development. Dorota has extensive experience in managing complex and informational projects for a variety of major funders such as UKRI, the European Commission, DfID and Deutsche Bank.

EU research and innovation policy, challenges affecting research funding in general and in exploring novel means of sharing good practice are among Dorota’s current interests. In May 2021 she presented at INORMS (Hiroshima) on how universities can demonstrate to funders their capacity to govern and administer research effectively. 


Nathalie van-der-Elst

Nathalie Van-der-Elst - Research Development Manager

Nathalie joined Research and Innovation (R&I) in October 2020. She provides strategic support and guidance for LSE faculty by facilitating and developing research grant opportunities to secure UK and international funding.

Nathalie completed a MSc in International Development and Humanitarian Emergencies from LSE and received her BA in International Relations from Boston University. Her interests include gender justice and care work.

Prior to working in R&I, Nathalie worked in Philanthropy and Global Engagement (PaGE) at LSE where she managed a diverse portfolio cultivating mutually beneficial relationships with UK and international trusts and foundations and the School. 

Research Awards Team

  • Co-ordinates, manages and provides support in all aspects of research grant management (once an application is awarded).
  • Ensures compliance with internal financial regulations and  regulations of research funding bodies.
  • Manages contractual relationship with external research funding bodies.
  • Manages Research Infrastructure and Investment Fund.

Get a feel for the core services we offer in our Research Awards infographic or download our detailed service standards.   

Meet the Research Awards Team

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Kerry Hocken - Research Accountant and Head of Research Awards 

Kerry joined LSE in 1990 and after an 18 month stint in Finance Division she moved to what was the Research and Consultancy Office. Kerry has seen Research and Innovation grow from a small team of 6 looking after research awards with annual income in the region of £4m to a team with 30 members of staff and research income in excess of £30m.

Since 1996 Kerry has been the LSE’s Research Accountant and later took full line management responsibility for the Research Awards Team. Kerry is responsible for the School’s research and accounting procedures and processes, providing guidance for the Research and Innovation and the School on research related finance, resource and accounting matters.

She is also responsible for managing and producing the HEFCE 10 year forecasts, year-end returns and HESA Financial Statistical returns in relation to research grant income and the financial data for REF.  

Kerry is committed to ensuring that the Research Awards Team strives towards providing exceptional service delivery and support to the LSE research community, helping to contribute towards the success of the School’s research. 



Fatima Arshad - Research Awards Manager

Fatima joined Research and Innovation in February 2023 as a Research Awards Manager, having completed her MA in Social Development from the University of Sussex.

Before pursuing her postgraduate degree in the UK, she served as a counsellor in the Student Affairs Department at Nixor College, Pakistan, where she had direct interactions with students and facilitated communication between various departments including the Dean's Office.

Fatima has also gained valuable skills in management and leadership through her diverse professional background.


Nilsen Berquier

Nilsen Berquier - Research Awards Manager

Nilsen joined LSE Research and Innovation in 2018 after moving from Australia. He has brought extensive experience across university financial, operational and research management from prior positions at Birkbeck College, University of London and the University of Queensland.

He has degrees in finance, economics and political science and is currently studying a Master of International Marine Science. Nilsen is dedicated to providing high-level research support to a number of diverse departments and working with researchers, funders and key stakeholders to ensure progression and successful completion of research projects at LSE. 



Jane Ellison - Senior Research Awards Manager

Jane supports a broad portfolio of research awards for the School’s academic research community. She has various background experience which includes scientific training, industrial research leadership, management within small business and self-employment.

With her skills and attributes, Jane underpins LSE by ensuring an optimum use of project resource which enables the academic research community to achieve the best results from grant awards.



Natalie Hua - Research Awards Manager

Natalie joined LSE Research and Innovation in June 2020 as Research Awards Manager, supporting several research centres and academic departments in the management of their research projects. Prior to that she worked for Toyota Financial Services, Australia. Natalie has a Bachelor of Commerce, Majors: Finance and International Commerce from Monash University.


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Benjamin Nevius - Senior Research Awards Manager

Benjamin is one of two Senior Research Awards Managers in Research and Innovation’s Research Awards Team and has over ten years' research administration experience. He has worked at LSE since 2008.

He helps departments and centres manage their research grant portfolios, provides training and support to his colleagues on the team, and assists the research accountant with her duties. He has experience working with all types of funders including the European Commission and Research Councils. 

Prior to joining LSE, he worked for over four years on the Pre-Award team of the Smithsonian Institution’s Office of Sponsored Projects, helping staff from the National Museum of Natural History locate funding opportunities and prepare and submit grant proposals, with emphasis on proposals to the National Science Foundation.

Before that, Benjamin worked at the Texas Department of Protective and Regulatory services where he managed contracts for a government-funded juvenile delinquency prevention programme. 

He has a master's degree in social work from the University of Texas at Austin with a specialisation in non-profit administration and planning.


Edward Perrin

Edward Perrin - Research Awards Manager

Edward joined Research and Innovation as a Research Awards Manager in August 2021. He previously worked as the Administrator: Finance, Projects and Facilities for 3 years supporting the LSE Department of Mathematics in its financial and operational processes. Prior to this, Edward worked for the University of Cambridge Biomedical Services and Division of Anaesthesia in a financial and operational capacity. 

Edward has a BSc (Hons) Degree in International Management from Anglia Ruskin University, which included a year studying at the Hogeschool Zuyd (Maastricht) as part of the Erasmus programme. He has a PRINCE2 qualification and is working towards a CIMA professional qualification.



Agnes Yung- Research Awards Manager

Agnes joined Research and Innovation as Research Awards Manager in January 2023. She previously worked as Student Research Assistant in the Department of Art History at University of Göttingen in Germany, providing support in course preparation and research projects.

Prior to that, she worked for various organisations in the arts sector in Hong Kong, including a governmental museum office, a charity and a statutory funding body. Agnes has a master's degree in Art History from University of Göttingen.


Research Governance and Impact Team

  • Offers advice on LSE’s Research Ethics Policy.
  • Supports the development and governance of research policy and strategy.
  • Manages the Research Excellence Framework (REF) preparation and submission process, including publications and impact case studies.
  • Creates greater awareness of knowledge exchange and impact (KEI) activities both within the LSE and at an individual level through KEI projects funded by the Higher Education Innovation Fund (HEIF) and the ESRC Impact Accelerator Account.

Meet the Research Governance and Impact Team

Jo Hemmings 2023 update

Jo Hemmings - Head of Research Governance and Impact

Jo oversees the work of the Research Governance and Impact Team, which broadly focuses on supporting the research environment for academic colleagues.  She manages the School's submission to the Research Excellence Framework (REF) on behalf of the REF Strategy Committee and supports the team’s work on research ethics, research integrity and knowledge exchange and impact (KEI). 

Jo joined Research and Innovation in 2000 and has overseen the School’s submissions to four national research exercises to date.  Jo has a BA in English from the University of Liverpool and an MA in Renaissance Studies from Birkbeck.


Kieran Booluck

Kieran Booluck - Research Impact Manager

Kieran provides support to individuals, departments and centres across the School in developing and fulfilling research impact strategies. He leads the preparation of high-quality impact case studies for the Research Excellence Framework and, working with the School's KEI Integrated Service, submissions to the Knowledge Exchange Framework and Knowledge Exchange Concordat.

Kieran was previously editor of the LSE Impact Blog, a sector-leading online forum publishing research and commentary on topics related to research policy, scholarly communications, and maximising the impact of academic research.


Myriam F

Myriam Fellous-Sigrist - Research Ethics Officer 

Myriam supports the work of the Research Ethics Committee and the Research Governance Manager. She oversees research ethics applications submitted to the Research Ethics Committee for review and supports researchers, students and colleagues in other professional services divisions.

Myriam joined Research and Innovation in 2022. She has a PhD in Digital Humanities from King’s College London; her thesis analysed the ethical and legal impact of digital technologies on audiovisual archives, with a focus on oral history collections.

She previously worked at the British Library, providing copyright and data protection support for a large sound heritage project. Before that she worked at University College London Library where she helped research staff and students navigate expectations around research data management, research ethics and funders’ data sharing policies.


Lyn 2023 update

Lyn Grove - Research Governance Manager

Lyn assists the Research Governance and Impact Team in matters regarding research governance with particular reference to research ethics and (mis)conduct.

She provides advice and support on the School’s research ethics procedures and supports the work of the Research Ethics Committee. She plays a key role in ensuring that the School’s research ethics policy reflects sector-wide good practice. She also supports the School’s research ethics training and development activities.

Lyn has been at LSE since 2001. For many years she was the centre manager of the Centre for the Analysis of Time Series.

Lyn has a PhD from the UCL Institute of Education. Her thesis examined the effects of funding policies on academic research.


Cas Headley-Walker 2023 update

Casimira Headley-Walker - Committees and Governance Manager

Casimira manages the School’s Research Committees, including the Research Committee, REFSC, and KEFSC, scheduling, writing and receiving reports, and preparing minutes. She also runs Research Centre Reviews for the School, as well as dealing with committee related questions.

She joined the School from Birkbeck, where she is currently completing an MA in Historical Research.


Wendy Leung 2023 update

Wendy Leung - REF Support Manager

Wendy joined Research and Innovation in February 2019 as REF Support Manager, co-ordinating the REF 2021 submission with a focus on the technical aspects of REF requirements and an oversight of the equality, diversity and inclusivity analyses in relation to REF 2021. She will continue to provide advice and training across the School in preparation for its submission to the next REF.

She has diverse experience in enabling research and researchers in the higher education sector. This includes several years in medical research and academic publishing as managing editor for a large portfolio of Psychology journals at Routledge, followed by some time at both KCL and UCL supporting research strategy across the life and medical sciences.


Systems and Operations Team

  • Develops and maintains Research and Innovation's IT systems.
  • Provides management information and benchmarking data, monitors and streamlines business processes.
  • Manages operations across Research and Innovation.

Meet the Systems and Operations Team

Amanda Burgess 2023 update

Amanda Burgess - Head of Systems and Operations

Amanda is responsible for developing and maintaining Research and Innovation's IT systems used in the support of research award management, the provision of management information from internal systems and external benchmarking data, monitoring and streamlining business processes, and managing operations across Research and Innovation.

She has worked in Research and Innovation since 1993, undertaking various roles including team leader of the Research Awards Team and a four-year secondment to LSE Enterprise. She has a strong commitment to customer service and service delivery.



Charlotte Creamore - Research Development Administrative Assistant

Charlotte joined LSE Research and Innovation in August 2022 having completed an MA in English Literature at UCL and receiving a first class BA from the University of Warwick. Throughout her four years at university, she has contributed to a number of higher education projects, working alongside organisations such as The Sutton Trust and The National Literacy Trust. 



Jay Riedel - Administrative Assistant

Jay joined the team in September 2022 after returning from a career break. Since graduating from a Business degree, Jay has worked in various administrative roles for companies such as Close Brothers Group and General Electric.



Crispin Williams 2023 update

Crispin Williams - Research Systems Manager

Crispin joined Research and Innovation in late 2018. He is the system administrator and expert user for Pure and provides first line support for all Research and Innovation systems.

Before joining the team, Crispin spent a number of years working for the NHS and has provided support in the implementation of various online systems to provide greater automation and improve management information within a corporate setting.


Further guidance


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LSE Research and Innovation, Houghton Street, London, WC2A 2AE, United Kingdom