Professor Phil Tomlinson of the School of Management has been conferred the award of Fellow of the Academy of Social Sciences, a prestigious body of the UK’s leading social scientists from across academia, the public, private and third sectors. Fellowships are awarded after an extensive peer review process for the excellence and impact of Fellows’ work through the use of social science for public benefit.
Professor Tomlinson has been especially recognised for his research on regional development and contributions to place-based industrial strategy, particularly with regards to revitalising lagging regions. In recent years, these issues have become increasingly prominent in the public policy domain. In this regard, Professor Tomlinson has played an important role in shaping these debates locally, nationally and internationally. These include advisory positions with the All-Parliamentary Manufacturing Group, and presentations to Parliament and invited talks to the European Commission. Locally, he sat on the advisory panel for Swindon and Wiltshire LEP’s local industrial strategy, and he currently sits on the West of England Combined Authority’s Skills Advisory Panel.
Professor Tomlinson is also a Fellow of the Regional Studies Association and is the Policy Debates Editor of Regional Studies (an ABS 4 rated journal). He has been at Bath for 22 years, where he is the co-Director of the Centre for Governance, Regulation and Industrial Strategy, and a member of the Institute of Policy Research. Over the years, he has held several grants from major funders, including the ESRC, EPSRC, the EU and the Regional Studies Association. A current InterAct (ESRC) funded project is exploring how manufacturers can utilise co-working spaces to enhance their operations, and the impact this might have in lagging regions and for ‘levelling up’.
Commenting on the award, Professor Tomlinson said
‘I am absolutely delighted and truly honoured to receive this accolade. A key passion driving my research has always been the implications of my work for public policy and practice – especially place based industrial policy and how this might be utilised to improve the prospects of businesses and the livelihoods of people located in so-called lagging regions.
The Academy is a wonderful platform for promoting the value of social science research in the public domain, and it is a fantastic honour to be recognised in this way.
I would like to thank the Academy for this award, and also my colleagues and friends within the Regional Studies Association and its networks. Over many years, the RSA has provided a strong supportive environment for my research, and it has opened up so many opportunities for me to promote my work in the public and policy domains. The RSA continues to be at the forefront in shaping the debates around regional development and policy’.