Dr Robert Parker appointed RSC chief executive

Dr Robert Parker has been appointed chief executive of the Royal Society of Chemistry. He has acted as interim chief executive since March this year.

Dr Parker brings more than 25 years’ experience at the RSC to the role, having joined the organisation in 1985 as assistant editor. He joined the journal publishing division of the RSC when it was located in premises above a tailor’s shop in Savile Row, since which it relocated to Cambridge and expanded to become a renowned international publisher.

The RSC’s journal portfolio rose to 30 as published content almost trebled during Dr Parker’s tenure first as editorial director, before becoming managing director, publishing, in 2007.

Dr Parker said: “I am sincerely delighted and honoured to have been selected for this leadership role for the RSC, but it is not one that I have taken on lightly. There are many challenges facing the chemical sciences, and they come in many forms.”

He says the RSC’s strengths lie in tackling issues such as funding pressures on research, increasing student fees, challenges facing industry as a result of the increasing globalisation of chemistry, and potential changes in business models for scholarly publishing.

“Fortunately, through our growth in size and influence, the RSC is in a fantastic position to face the challenges ahead, not least through our large and committed body of members, many of whom do great things for the RSC and the chemical sciences on a voluntary basis. They are the absolute grass roots of what the RSC is and does.

“We have a terrific chance to turn challenges into opportunities, and that should be our aim.”

RSC President Professor David Phillips said: “We are extremely pleased to have made this appointment, and have every faith that under Robert’s leadership the RSC will continue to thrive and be successful long into the future.”