UCO welcomes Professor Janusz Jankowski as new Chair of the Board

The Board of Directors are responsible for determining the policies and the strategic direction of the UCO as an exempt charity and meet a minimum of four times a year, delegating the day-to-day operations of the organisation to the Vice-Chancellor and the Senior Management Team. In July 2019, the UCO welcomed Professor Janusz Jankowski as new Chair of the Board.

Professor Jankowski is a doctor, educationalist, scientist and an expert in Social and Healthcare Policy, Academic Management and Global Research and Education Networks. He has held a number of senior management roles, including Deputy Vice-Chancellor of Research and Innovation at the Royal College of Surgeons in Ireland, Pro Vice-Chancellor Research at the University of Central Lancashire, Associate Dean for Research at the University of Plymouth, and the Sir James Black Professorship at Queen Mary University of London. We caught up with him to find out a bit more about his background and vision.

What does a Chair of the Board do?

They are there to ensure a functional and constructive relationship between all the board members including the executive (including the Vice-Chancellors group and student representatives) and the non-executive independent experts. The Chair is to ensure this relationship provides governance, guidance and, if needed, oversight of the executive whistleblowing policy.

To date, which of your many achievements are you most proud of and why?

Being doctor is a profound privilege, being able to be trusted to help patients when they are most vulnerable is immensely rewarding and humbling. However, I am proud that teams that I have led have helped evolved pivotal research in basic diseases genetics (Nature Genetics 2012), basic stem cell biology (Gastroenterology 2013) and human cancer prevention therapy (Lancet 2018).

You have an illustrious career, including being involved in various medical innovations. What has attracted you to the world of osteopathy?

As someone interested in martial arts, I have been impressed how holistic, quick and evidence-based osteopathy is from both a personal and professional perspective. Osteopathy is a sleeping giant of a profession waiting in the wings for prime-time development and growth.

Osteopathy has been recognised as an ‘Allied Health’ service by the NHS. What do you think this means in practice for osteopaths?

Osteopathy is now a professional holistic therapeutic intervention which is increasingly needed in the management and prevention of human musculoskeletal diseases. Therefore, osteopaths are now fully-fledged health team members access the entire spectrum of primary and secondary care pathways.

What do you think is the essence of good health care?

There can only be one answer to this; 'the patient and their interests must always come first in the consultation and the consequential interventions'.

You must have a very busy life; how do you like to relax?  

I relax by running regularly in the early morning, undertaking charity work so I meet like-minded peopleworking on a professional but pro bono basis for the benefit of people and the environment. Finally, I enjoy reading and writing, both science and history.

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