Wellcome Trust puts top comms job up for grabs

Independent medical research body, the Wellcome Trust is looking for a PR heavyweight to head its communications and public affairs, with a brief to inform the public on issues such as cloning and animal organ transplants.

Independent medical research body, the Wellcome Trust is looking

for a PR heavyweight to head its communications and public affairs, with

a brief to inform the public on issues such as cloning and animal organ

transplants.



In the wake of the public reception of GM foods, the trust is keen to

ensure that debate on controversial areas is informed, not

irrational.



Dr Laurence Smaje, director of medicine, society and history at the

Wellcome Trust said it would be taking a two-fold approach. ’We are not

in the business of persuading people that all medical research is good,’

he said.



’We will be developing ways of consulting the public, and we will also

be developing serious thinking which can inform public debate.’

According to Smaje, this would include developing new styles of focus

groups to establish the basis of public opinion, and also ensuring new

research was released to the mainstream media.



Whoever takes the role will head a department of over 25 staff. He or

she will be responsible for the trust’s communication strategy, and have

direct access to chief executive Michael Dexter.



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