IDS Director awarded Fellowship at Academy of Social Sciences

Published on 6 October 2021

Professor Melissa Leach, the Director of the Institute of Development Studies (IDS), has received the Award of Fellow of the Academy of Social Sciences (FAcSS) in recognition of her significant contribution to social science.

The Academy of Social Sciences is the national academy of academics, societies and practitioners in the social sciences and aims to promote social science for public benefit across the UK. This includes conferring the award of the title of Fellow to leading social scientists for the excellence and impact of their work and their wider social science contribution.  This follows an independent peer review process.

Professor Melissa Leach joins a range of new Fellows elected this year, from academic and practitioner settings, including IDS Board member Professor Frances Stewart, emeritus of the University of Oxford.

The award to Professor Leach recognises her distinguished contribution to social science disciplines and to international development research here in the UK and globally. Professor Leach currently leads the Institute of Development Studies, the global leading research institute and think tank.

Her distinguished career includes co-founding and co-directing the ESRC STEPS Centre, acting as lead social scientist in the UK and WHO Ebola scientific advisory committees during 2014-15 and being a co-director of the World Social Science Report 2016 ‘Challenging Inequalities: Pathways to a Just World’. Professor Leach is also a current member of the International Panel of Experts on Sustainable Food Systems (IPES-food) and independent member of the Strategic Coherence of ODA Research (SCOR) Board in the UK.

As part of the Academy’s community, Fellows commit to supporting and collectively providing leadership, scholarship, applied research, policymaking, and practice in social sciences that will help deepen understanding and directly address the most pressing global challenges. The Academy aims to demonstrate the breadth of contributions that social sciences make to our political, social and economic lives and leads the Campaign for Social Science in the UK.


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