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The Biotechnology and Biological Sciences Research Council (BBSRC) has recognised outstanding contributions to bioscience made by members of its research community.

Professor Russell Foster has won an award recognising excellence in bioscience communication. He will receive a prize medal, along with £2000, at the Great British Bioscience Festival in November. 

In addition to his distinguished research on sleep and circadian rhythms, for which he was elected to the Fellowship of the Royal Society and Academy of Medical Sciences, Professor Russell Foster’s broad contribution to science communication is outstanding.

He has developed multiple science and music education projects, most notably with the Orchestra of the Age of Enlightenment. His TED talk in 2013 has attracted over 4.6 million views. He is a regular contributor to the Cheltenham Science Festival and has chaired the Festival since 2010. In 2013 Russell was appointed as the first Chair of the Public Engagement Committee at the Royal Society. He has published three popular science books, and is a regular contributor to newspapers, magazines, radio and television.

I am deeply honoured by this award as it was established to recognise a research scientist who has made an outstanding contribution to both scientific discovery and public engagement in science. Both endeavours are also at the heart of the activities of the SCNi and it is exciting that the BBSRC clearly recognises and supports the dual pursuits of research and engagement.
- Russell Foster

Russell is Head of the Sleep and Circadian Neuroscience Institute (SCNi), the first in the world dedicated to the neuroscience of sleep and to advancing our understanding of how sleep and circadian rhythm disruption impacts upon health.The SCNi will reach out to a variety of external audiences by:

  • Disseminating knowledge and research findings about circadian neuroscience and sleep, their health implications, treatment and prevention
  • Listening to patients and caregivers to ensure that their concerns, fears, interests and ideas are understood and integrated across the SCNi
  • Collaborating with patients and caregivers to harness their expertise and knowledge for the development of evidence-based interventions and for the training of healthcare practitioners
  • Offering clinical training related to sleep and circadian neuroscience, with particular regard to psychiatric disorders.

        The Biotechnology and Biological Sciences Research Council (BBSRC) invests in world-class bioscience research and training on behalf of the UK public in order to further scientific knowledge, to promote economic growth, wealth and job creation and to improve quality of life in the UK and beyond. See the BBSRC website for more information.