Tom Scott-Smith named one of ten new BBC/AHRC New Generation Thinkers

26 March, 2020

Associate Professor Tom Scott-Smith is one of ten researchers to be selected from across the UK as 2020 ‘New Generation Thinkers’ by BBC Radio 3 and the Arts and Humanities Research Council (AHRC).

The New Generation Thinkers scheme is one of the major ways in which the AHRC engages the public with the inspiring research taking place across the UK. It offers a chance for early career researchers, with support and training provided by AHRC and the BBC, to cultivate the skills to communicate their research findings to those outside the academic community; helping the next generation of researchers find new and wider audiences for their research by giving them a platform to share their ideas and allowing them to have the space to challenge our thinking.

Professor Andrew Thompson, Executive Chair of the AHRC, said: 'Since 2010 the New Generation Thinkers scheme has developed ten groups of academics to bring the best of university research and scholarly ideas to a broad audience through media and public engagement.

'Now, more than ever, we need to share the rich and diverse array of research in the world of arts and humanities with the public and open the window to a world of research that will amaze and engage.'

This year marks the tenth anniversary of the scheme; 100 New Generation Thinkers alumni have gone on to become prominent public figures in their field as well as the face of major documentaries, TV series, and regular figures in public debate.

Throughout the year, the new cohort will work with BBC producers to develop their ideas to showcase a vibrant mix of research from across the arts and humanities.

Alan Davey, Controller, BBC Radio 3, said: 'At Radio 3 we want as many people as possible to have life enhancing cultural experiences, especially in these extraordinary times. Since the New Generation Thinkers launch ten years ago in 2010, it has changed the nature of academic debate on Radio 3. The scheme has supported and nurtured some extraordinary talent, and given the broadcasters of tomorrow a platform to spotlight fresh ways of thinking about both the past and present.

'Looking to the future, I can’t wait to hear what new ideas and research this year’s cohort will bring to our listeners in the Free Thinking discussions and Essays we broadcast for BBC Radio 3 and the Arts & Ideas podcast. I hope their experience of working with us on shaping ideas feeds into their teaching and helps them reach a wider public.  Now, more than ever, the public need new dynamic ideas from dynamic great minds.'

The successful ten were selected from hundreds of applications from researchers at the start of their careers. 

Find out more.