UK Government Chief Scientific Adviser (Prof Sir Mark Walport) to visit Nairobi

Jul 13, 2015Blog, Latest news

Prof Sir Mark WalportThe UK government’s Chief Scientific Adviser, Sir Mark Walport, will be visiting Nairobi from 14-15 July, 2015, with the aim of fostering closer UK-Kenya linkages on Higher education and research, and seeing the impact of UK-funded research in Kenya.

His visit comes at a time when the Kenyan government has committed new investment for science, technology and innovation as a key to economic growth. Kenya also occupies a strong position in Africa’s research landscape, second only to South Africa, in research and productivity and shows consistent rates of growth.

Sir Mark will visit the Global Alliance for Livestock Veterinary Medicines (GALVmed) offices on Tuesday 14 July. Part-funded by UK aid, GALVmed is a £70 million (approx Ksh11 billion) public-private partnership established to address the critical shortfall in livestock vaccines and medicines for animals. The visit will discuss GALVmed and partners’ market scale up of livestock vaccines and the regional engagement in Africa. That same evening he will host a talk and reception at the British High Commissioner’s Residence titled: “Evidence-based policy making—linking government, academia and private sector”. The reception will be the first major event where the British High Commission hosts Kenyan and UK partners in research and higher education. In attendance will be Chancellors and Vice Chancellors of many of Kenya’s universities, researchers and private sector organizations with links to academia, and representatives of other research funders. Media are invited to cover the event.

He will visit the International Livestock Research Institute (ILRI) on Wednesday 15 July. The visit will highlight the important role that UK-Africa institutional relationships can play in addressing food security issues and building capacity in African science. The UK provides funding to ILRI to develop and deploy new livestock vaccines and medicines and to increase the resilience and productivity of livestock-based farming systems.

Prof Eric Fevre from the ZED group will be presenting our team’s work on both the Urban Zoo and ZooLinK projects to Sir Mark during his visit to ILRI.  These projects are operating in Kenya and are funded by the UK Research Councils and DFID


Sir Mark Walport was appointed Government Chief Scientific Adviser (GCSA) and Head of the Government Office for Science in April 2013.

As GCSA Mark is co-chair of the Prime Minister’s Council for Science and Technology (CST).

His previous career highlights include:

  • Director of the Wellcome Trust
  • Professor of Medicine and Head of the Division of Medicine at Imperial College London
  • member of the India-UK CEO Forum and UK-India Round Table
  • member of the advisory board of Infrastructure UK
  • non-executive member of the Office for Strategic Coordination of Health Research

Mark received a knighthood in the 2009 New Year Honours List for services to medical research and was elected a Fellow of The Royal Society in 2011.

Government Chief Scientific Adviser

The Government Chief Scientific Adviser (GCSA) is responsible for:

  • providing scientific advice to the Prime Minister and members of Cabinet
  • advising the government on aspects of policy on science and technology
  • ensuring and improving the quality and use of scientific evidence and advice in government
  • leading the science and engineering profession within the Civil Service


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