Lord Willis of Knaresborough
NERC Council member
Lord Willis was educated at the City of Leeds & Carnegie College and Birmingham University. He spent 20 years as head teacher of two large urban comprehensives before entering Parliament in 1997, becoming Shadow Secretary of State for Education & Skills prior to being elected Chair of the Science & Technology Select Committee in 2005.
Awarded a peerage in 2010, Phil sat on the Science & Technology Committee until 2015 and dedicates much of his time to research in areas including science & innovation and health policy. He was a co-author of the recently published report into the future viability of the NHS and social care. He chaired the Association of Medical Research Charities until 2015 and was awarded an honorary doctorate of science from Salford University in 2013 for his work on evidence-based policymaking. Following his seminal report on graduate nurse education in 2012, he was made a Fellow of the Royal College of Nursing and has recently been awarded an honorary doctorate of science from City University London.
He is a Fellow of the Royal Society of Arts and a member of the Policy Board of the Royal Society and the Foundation for Science & Technology. He chaired the National Institute for Health Research (NIHR) and Wellcome Trust Health Innovation Challenge Fund Review and was appointed Chair of the NIHR Collaboration for Leadership in Applied Health Research & Care for Yorkshire and Humber in 2014.
He recently led the Health Education England 'Shape of Caring Review' into the education and training of nursing and health care staff where his proposal to introduce the Nursing Assistant post has resulted in 2,000 students being trained this year. He was a member of the Nursing & Midwifery Council (NMC), sponsoring board set up to nursing standards and is currently leading a groundbreaking proposal to set up the first ever Doctoral Training Centre for Nursing and is leading Health Education England's development of training and education for mental health professionals and support staff.
Lord Willis continues his involvement with education as visiting lecturer at several universities, including York, London City and Nottingham, and is acting as a consultant to Health Education England and to NMC.