Meet the new SRA trustees

The SRA can have up to 15 trustees, who serve for at most six years in this voluntary role. Earlier this year the current trustee group decided that a refresh was needed, as by the end of 2018 there would have been only eight trustees remaining. So, in February we put out a call to SRA members, and received an excellent response. We are now pleased to introduce you to the ‘new intake’, who will attend board meetings, as co-optees until their positions can be confirmed by a vote of members at the AGM in December. They describe themselves below:


Ailbhe McNabola

Head of research and policy, Power to Change Trust

Ailbhe McNabola I head up an ambitious research programme at the relatively newly established Power to Change Trust, a charitable foundation that supports community business in England. I have 15 years’ experience in research and analysis in policy-relevant fields, having started my career in management consultancy at Accenture. I went on to join the team evaluating policy implementation at the National Audit Office, then a stint at PA Consulting before leaving consultancy to head up the research team at the Museums, Libraries and Archives Council (now part of Arts Council England) and in my most recent role, at the Design Council where I was director of policy and research.


Dan Clay

Managing Partner, Newgate Communications

Dan ClayI lead Newgate Research UK, the social and market research arm of Newgate Communications, one of the UK’s leading communications and PR firms - what better career than one where you get to help solve complex business and societal issues? That said, over 15 years in and my parents still don’t seem to understand what I do! On a personal level, I thrive on leading teams to find creative solutions to conducting and disseminating research, and in working collaboratively with clients from across the public, private and third sectors. I’m delighted to join the SRA board and look forward to bringing energy and a touch of leftfield thinking to help continue expand the membership offer in 2018 and beyond.


Jane Evans

Independent researcher

Jane EvansI am an independent qualitative researcher with over 19 years’ experience working with vulnerable and marginalised groups to include their voices and enable their participation. My areas of expertise include: policy relating to disadvantaged children and young people; qualitative research and review methods; participatory methods; research governance and ethics; service evaluation. After completing a PhD in education policy at the UCL Institute of Education in 2007, I worked for nine years at Barnardo’s as a senior policy researcher. I have extensive understanding of ethical practice and currently serve as vice chair of a research ethics committee.


Karen Kerr

Research manager, evaluation and research team, Skills Development Scotland

Karen KerrI lead on the management and delivery of all customer research projects for Skills Development Scotland, the national skills agency in Scotland. This includes commissioned research and projects delivered in-house. Core areas include the Careers Information, Advice and Guidance service, employee engagement and external stakeholder perceptions. All work involves a strong equalities element. I have over 25 years’ research experience, both as a lecturer and practitioner. I find the variety of interesting work the best thing about my job. I am a passionate advocate for research quality, integrity and innovation.


Martina Vojtkova
Head of the evaluation team, NatCen Social Research

Martina VojtkovaI oversee NatCen’s evaluation work and lead on the design of impact evaluations as well as NatCen’s systematic review and evidence mapping work. I’m experienced in mixed methods evaluation approaches, logic model and theory of change work, and process evaluation methods. I also hold the role of associate editor for the Campbell Collaboration. I started my research career as a systematic reviewer and have always been passionate about applied social research and its importance in informing policy and practice. I am particularly excited about the SRA trustee role as it provides a unique opportunity to continue supporting a large number of highcalibre researchers in their professional development.


Rosie McLeod
Deputy head of measurement and evaluation, New Philanthropy Capital

I work at a think tank and consultancy for the third sector, helping charities and funders use research and evaluation to increase their impact. I’ve been in social research since university, starting out in participatory action research projects with Somali refugee women. I then became a social policy researcher focused on qualitative and deliberative methods, but I’m still keen on the ethos and methods of action research. The SRA has been my professional home since the beginning - it reassured me I was in the right place! - and as a trustee I want to help it thrive and really inspire people with some great content.