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Digital Science’s Chief Scientist Jonathan Adams to Receive Honorary Degree from University of Exeter


By Alex Jackson July 17, 2017

Adams will receive the prestigious Doctor of Science honoris causa for contributions made to research policy in the UK

17th July 2017: London, UK — Technology company Digital Science today announced that their Chief Scientist, Professor Jonathan Adams, has been awarded an honorary degree for his work in the field of higher education and research policy. The University of Exeter has awarded this degree in recognition of the significant contributions he has made to the understanding and development of the management of publicly funded research.

Adams started his career in Zoology and went on to establish his research at King’s College, London and the University of Newcastle. He then went on to a science policy advisor role at the UK Advisory Body for the Research Councils and later to the University of Leeds as Director of Research Strategy. In 2000 he co-founded Evidence Ltd, with the aim of creating evidence-based research information for universities and government departments. It was in this role he enabled institutions to compare peer performance in detail and improve their research management. Evidence was bought by Thomson Reuters in 2009.

Now at Digital Science, Adams continues to challenge the status quo, having authored many influential reports including: The Implications of International Research Collaboration for UK Universities

Deputy Vice-Chancellor (Research and Impact), Professor Nicholas J Talbot FRS said:

“We are honoured to welcome Jonathan Adams to the University of Exeter as an honorary graduate in recognition of his achievements. Above all, we are recognising someone who has consistently challenged the way in which we think about research in the UK and the contributions he has made to the understanding and development of the management of publicly funded research. The University of Exeter shares Jonathan’s commitment to evidence-led policy.”

Professor Jonathan Adams, Chief Scientist, Digital Science said:

“The University of Exeter is an institution that exemplifies what thoughtful and supportive management working with an excellent academic body can achieve. Exeter’s success is reflected in its national reputation, its climb in international university tables and its ability consistently to attract talented staff and students. It is a real honour to receive such a mark of esteem from the community that you have worked in and for for the last 40 years.”

Daniel Hook, CEO, Digital Science commented that:

“Digital Science has always aimed to be home to innovators and those who lead and shape research.  Jonathan embodies that very spirit and his achievements, both academic and in support of the academy, speak for themselves.  The University of Exeter has a reputation as an innovative institution and is well known to many colleagues at Digital Science.  As such, it is particularly gratifying to see Jonathan recognised with such a distinguished honour by the University of Exeter.”

Adams will be presented with his honorary degree on Monday the 17th July in a ceremony to be held at the Great Hall, University of Exeter. News will be shared online using #ExeterForever. 


Digital Science is a technology company serving the needs of scientific and research communities, at the laboratory bench or in a research setting. It invests in and incubates scientific software companies that simplify the research cycle, making more time for discovery. Its portfolio companies and investments include a host of leading and admired brands including Altmetric, BioRAFT, Figshare, GRID, IFI CLAIMS, Labguru, Peerwith, Overleaf, ReadCube, Symplectic, TetraScience, Transcriptic, and ÜberResearch. It is operated by global media company, the Holtzbrinck Publishing Group. Visit and follow @digitalsci on Twitter.

About the University of Exeter

The University of Exeter is a Russell Group university that combines world-class research with very high levels of student satisfaction. Exeter has over 21,000 students and is in the top one per cent of universities worldwide. Exeter is also ranked 9th in The Times and The Sunday Times Good University Guide 2017 and 13th in the Guardian University Guide 2018. In the 2014 Research Excellence Framework (REF), the University ranked 16th nationally, with 98% of its research rated as being of international quality. Exeter was named The Times and The Sunday Times Sports University of the Year 2015-16, in recognition of excellence in performance, education and research.  Exeter was The Sunday Times University of the Year 2012-13.

The University launched its flagship Living Systems Institute in 2016, a world-class, interdisciplinary research community that will revolutionise the diagnosis and treatment of diseases. This follows recent investments of more than £350 million worth of new facilities across its campuses in recent years; including landmark new student services centres – the Forum in Exeter and The Exchange on the Penryn Campus in Cornwall, together with world-class new facilities for Biosciences, the Business School and the Environment and Sustainability Institute.

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