LCN scientist goes from Lab Bench to Backbench

Dr Nguyen Thanh (left)

LCN Researcher, Dr Nguyen TK Thanh has taken part in a scheme where MPs and Civil Servants are paired up with leading scientists for a week at both their respective places of work.

The Royal Society’s "Civil Servant/MP – Scientist pairing scheme" aims to build bridges between parliamentarians and some of the best scientists in the UK. It is an opportunity for MPs to become better informed about science issues and for scientists to understand how they can influence science policy.


Thanh was paired with Caroline Jacobs, Senior Policy adviser, EU and International Innovation Policy, Department for Business, Innovation and Skills.

Thanh spent several days in the Houses of Parliament, learning how science policy is formed as well as gaining an understanding of the working life of a civil servant. She said: “The time I spent in Westminster was a golden opportunity to get some insight into how a government department works. I found out how all the issues relating to my research are being decided, governed and executed.“

Caroline Jacobs made the return journey last week, visiting UCL to spend time with Thanh to gain a better understanding of how research funding is spent, how research is prioritised and what a typical day is like for a research scientist.