Dr Rita Gardner has been appointed Chief Executive of the Academy of Social Sciences and its Campaign for Social Science

September 27, 2018

London, 27 September 2018: The Academy of Social Sciences has appointed Dr Rita Gardner CBE FAcSS as its new Chief Executive. The Academy of Social Sciences is the UK’s national academy of academics, learned societies and practitioners in the social sciences.

Dr Gardner was formerly Director of the Royal Geographical Society (with the Institute of British Geographers), the UK’s learned society and professional body for geography, from 1996 to May 2018.

She is a fellow of the Academy of Social Sciences (FAcSS) and was a trustee and member of the Academy’s Council from 2013 to September 2018.

Professor Roger Goodman FAcSS, Chair of the Academy of Social Sciences, said, “I am delighted that Rita is joining the Academy as Chief Executive. She is hugely respected within the social sciences and has led the Royal Geographical Society with great success for more than 20 years. Her work and influence has also extended well beyond the society and she has held a range of senior appointments with organisations such as the British Council, British Academy and British Antarctic Survey.

“I am confident that Rita can take the Academy forward and build on the outstanding achievements of our current executive director Stephen Anderson, who has rebuilt the Academy’s financial model and transformed the Academy into a properly representative organisation speaking out regularly and authoritatively on behalf of the social sciences.”

Dr Rita Gardner said, “I am very much looking forward to joining the Academy and to working with colleagues, fellows, learned society members and the wider social science community. I have worked closely with the Academy, from the inside and outside, over many years and know at first-hand how much its work is valued by the social science community and beyond. Thanks to the achievements of Stephen Anderson, the Academy is in very good shape and it will be a privilege to lead it in the next stage of its development.”

 Dr Gardner takes up her appointment on 28 January 2019 and succeeds Stephen Anderson, who is retiring after more than 10 years as Executive Director.

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Notes to editors:

About the Academy of Social Sciences

The Academy of Social Sciences is the national academy of academics, learned societies and practitioners in the social sciences. Its mission is to promote social science in the United Kingdom for the public benefit. The Academy is composed of 1313 individual Fellows44 Learned Societies, and a number of affiliates, together representing nearly 90,000 social scientists. Fellows are distinguished scholars and practitioners from academia and the public and private sectors. Most learned societies in the social sciences in the UK are represented within the Academy. The Academy also sponsors the Campaign for Social Science.

About Dr Rita Gardner CBE FAcSS
Dr Rita Gardner CBE FAcSS is a professional geographer. She was Director of the Royal Geographical Society (with IBG), the UK’s learned society and professional body for geography, from 1996 to 2018. As Director, she developed and led a sustained, strategic programme of modernisation and expansion of the society, advocacy for geography, and public and policy engagement. Dr Gardner has extensive experience in advisory, trustee and committee roles, including Personal Advisor for geography to Lord Adonis (Schools Minister, Department for Children, Schools and Families); Chair, Exhibition Road Cultural Group; Non-Executive Director, British Antarctic Survey; and Member, ‘Finch’ Review Group on Open Access to Scholarly Publications. Dr Gardner pursued an early academic career in geography from 1979 to 1996 at London University after studying at Oxford University (DPhil) and UCL (BSc). Her work is recognised with three leading geography awards, five honorary degrees and a CBE for services to geography.

For further information, interviews or photos contact:
Aarti Basnyat
Communications Manager
Academy of Social Sciences/Campaign for Social Sciences
+44 (0) 20 7682 4663
E: [email protected]

www.acss.org.uk / campaignforsocialscience.org.uk
Twitter: @AcadSocSciences / @CfSocialScience