Sir John Bell, FRS

Professor Sir John Bell

President, EIT Oxford
Co-CEO, EIT Global
EIT Faculty
Principal, GHSC

Prof Sir John Bell leads multi-disciplinary teams at EIT Oxford – a major new interdisciplinary research and development facility that will support EIT’s mission to develop and deploy technology in pursuit of solving humanity’s most challenging and enduring problems.

Sir John served as Regius Professor of Medicine at the University of Oxford from 2002 to 2024. He was the President of the Academy of Medical Sciences from 2006 to 2011 and chaired the Office for the Strategic Coordination of Health Research until 2017. As a Rhodes Scholar (1975-78), Sir John undertook his medical training in the UK and then went on to Stanford University, returning to the UK in 1987. His research interests are in the area of autoimmune disease and immunology where he has contributed to the understanding of immune activation in a range of autoimmune diseases. In 1993, he founded the Wellcome Trust Centre for Human Genetics, one of the world’s leading centres for complex trait common disease genetics. In 2001, he was appointed non-executive director of Roche Holding AG and in 2008 he joined the Gates Foundation Global Health Advisory Board which he has chaired since 2012. He is Chair of the Rhodes Trust. In December 2011, Sir John was appointed one of two UK Life Sciences Champions by the Prime Minister. He sits on the board of Genomics England Limited and chairs its Science Advisory Committee. He was appointed Knight Grand Cross of the Order of the British Empire (GBE) in the 2015 New Year Honours for services to medicine, medical research and the life science industry. In August 2017, the UK Life Sciences Industrial Strategy, written by Sir John, was published and he has co developed a similar follow up report in 2021 called the Life Sciences Vision. The reports, written in collaboration with industry, academia, charity, and research organisations, provides recommendations to HM Government on the long-term success of the life sciences sector. Out of these initiatives he has also taken responsibility for Our Future Health, the UK’s largest cohort initiative where he Chairs the Board. Sir John has held prominent roles during the Covid epidemic,enabling the development of the testing platforms for LFTs and helping to initiate the PCR program nationally as well as helping to manage the relationship with Astra Zeneca that produced the Oxford AZ vaccine. He was appointed Companion of Honour (CH) in 2023 for for services to medicine, medical research, the life science industry and public health.