Steven Wooding

Senior Research Leader
Cambridge Office


Ph.D. in cell biology, University of Cambridge; M.A. in natural sciences, University of Cambridge

Media Resources

This researcher is available for interviews.

To arrange an interview, contact RAND Europe Media Relations at +44 (1223) 353 329, x2560, or email

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Steven Wooding is a senior research leader at RAND Europe. He works principally in the science of science, including work in research evaluation, improving funding decisions in research and understanding the social processes of science. He led a project to map mental health research funding across the world using bibliometrics. Previously he led the Mental Health Retrosight project that explored the impact of mental health research over the past 25 years and identified ways to increase the benefit that the public and patients get from research.

Wooding is the co-director of the Centre for Policy Research in Science and Medicine, supported by the English Department of Health. The centre carries out a range of research including developing bibliometric techniques to support decisionmaking and evaluating National Institute for Health Research programmes.

Wooding is investigating the effect of co-location on researchers in the biosciences, taking both a qualitative and economic approach. He contributed to the Ministerial Accelerated Access Review in the UK that is examining how to speed up access to new drugs, diagnostics and devices in the National Health Service.

Wooding's expertise is in developing and applying measurement frameworks and evaluation tools that capture the diverse range of benefits produced by research in biomedicine, social science and the humanities. He also has expertise in data visualisation and large-scale data processing.

He has worked for government and charity sector clients in the UK, Ireland, Canada, USA and Australia and led a number of international studies on evaluating the long-term (10-25 year) impacts of research.

Concurrent Non-RAND Positions

Visiting Research Fellow, Centre for Science and Policy, Cambridge University; Visiting Research Fellow, The Policy Institute at Kings', Kings' College London

Recent Projects

  • Mental Health Retrosight - Understanding the returns from research (lessons from schizophrenia)
  • Alternatives to Peer Review for awarding research funding
  • Measuring Research - A guide to research evaluation frameworks and tools


  • A doctor looking at an image of a human brain on a tablet

    Who's Funding Mental Health Research Worldwide?

    The size and diversity of mental health research is significant, but it remains a loosely defined field in which funders tend not to spell out what counts as mental health. An outline of the current state of mental health research funding worldwide helps to address the huge challenges of mental illness.

    Aug 17, 2016 Health Affairs Blog

  • Group of people discussing research funding

    Why Research Funders Looking for Impact Need to Be 'DECISIVE'

    Funding decisions in the UK direct the flow of billions of pounds of public and philanthropic funding but there is little evidence to suggest how to allocate grants to researchers to increase the chances that the work they support changes lives and improves society. New research helps inform funders' strategies.

    Apr 14, 2016 Research Fortnight

  • woman reviewing papers in an office

    Put Peer Review Under Review

    The progress of science and technology shows that good research does get funded—but it doesn’t show that peer review is the best way to select it, writes Steven Wooding.

    Apr 25, 2013 Research Europe