NEWS4 April 2022

Oxford University launches applied data centre

Data analytics Healthcare News UK

UK – The University of Oxford has opened an applied data science centre to lead its work on the use of data, evidence and digital tools in healthcare and policymaking.


The Bennett Institute for Applied Sara Science will be based within the Nuffield Department of Primary Care Health Sciences at the university.

The centre will be tasked with helping develop, use and evidence new tools and methods that can help data and evidence have an impact on the lives of patients and citizens.

The researcher and author Ben Goldacre has been named as Bennett professor of evidence-based medicine and will director at the applied data science centre.

Bennett is currently undertaking a review of the use of NHS data for the UK health secretary, and works in public engagement, writing and broadcasting for a general audience on problems in evidence-based medicine. 

The Bennett Institute will include researchers from a range of academic backgrounds, including clinicians, software engineers, policymakers and statisticians.

Louise Richardson, vice-chancellor at the University of Oxford, said: “The experience of the pandemic has demonstrated the centrality of both data and evidence, not only in shaping sound government policies, but also in improving public health outcomes.

“Ben Goldacre and his team have shown just how important universities have been in contributing to the nation’s health and well-being.”

Goldacre said: “I am delighted and excited to be given the opportunity to lead the Bennett Institute in this new professorial role.

“Data and evidence have proven power to transform lives. The founding of the Bennett Institute will help us accelerate our work, innovate more flexibly, and develop broad collaborations outside of medicine.”