Two academics at the University of Exeter have been awarded prestigious National Institute for Health and Care Research (NIHR) Senior Investigator status, in recognition of their outstanding contribution to research.

Professor Vicki Goodwin MBE and Professor G.J. Melendez-Torres, Exeter’s latest recipients from the 17th round of the awards, join three other Exeter researchers as members of the distinguished NIHR Academy and College of Senior Investigators. This brings the total number of NIHR Senior Investigators at Exeter to seven, with Professors Andrew Hattersley, David Richards, Paul Dieppe, Sarah (Sallie) Lamb all holding Emeritus Senior Investigator statuses, and the late Professor Ken Stein who was an NIHR Senior Investigator, who sadly died earlier this year.

NIHR Senior Investigators are critical in contributing to the continued success and development of healthcare within the nation, and this year 43 researchers across the country have been appointed following open competition.

Professor Vicki Goodwin, Physiotherapist and Professor of Ageing and Rehabilitation, specialises in the care of older people and is the Academic Career Development Lead for PenARC.

Vicki said: “I’m delighted and honoured to join the group of distinguished physiotherapists who have been made an NIHR Senior Investigators. I’ve been hugely supported by NIHR throughout my career and this award is testament to all the amazing people I work with to improve the health and wellbeing of older people.”

Professor G.J. Melendez-Torres, Professor of Clinical and Social Epidemiology, is a systematic reviewer and trialist in child and adolescent public health, intimate partner violence and health technology assessment. G.J. is part of the NIHR-funded Peninsula Technology Assessment Group and leads Exeter’s membership in the NIHR School for Public Health Research.

G.J. said: “NIHR support has been foundational to my research career, and I am grateful for this recognition. But most of all, this award inspires my gratitude for colleagues, whether researchers, clinicians, public partners or those working in broader practice, whose commitment to a healthier world drives my own.”

Professor Sallie Lamb, Pro-Vice Chancellor of the University of Exeter’s Faculty of Health and Life Sciences, said: “Congratulations to Vicki and G.J. for attaining these prestigious awards. This is wonderful recognition for their contribution and commitment to research and an endorsement of the quality of research here at Exeter, and ultimately to the impact this research has on improving patient care.”