SciDev.Net Profiles New Director Of U.K. Charity Wellcome Trust

As Jeremy Farrar assumes his new position as director of the Wellcome Trust, one of the world’s largest funders of biomedical research, “hopes have been raised that his experience of science in Southeast Asia may advance the trust’s activities in developing nations,” SciDev.Net reports. “Farrar is recognized as a leading figure in tropical medicine research,” having “spent the past 17 years as director of the Oxford University Clinical Research Unit (OUCRU) in Vietnam,” where “he studied diseases such as dengue fever, SARS (severe acute respiratory syndrome) and bird flu,” the news service writes. “There has been press speculation that Farrar’s experience in the developing world could lead to the trust strengthening its focus on capacity building in this part of the world,” the SciDev.Net notes and highlights several recent articles. “But Farrar tells SciDev.Net that it is too early to comment on such matters,” the news service continues, adding, “‘First, I need to listen to people,’ he says. ‘I see this as an evolutionary process and hope to be in post for many years. There is time to listen, stand back and take a long-term view'” (Panela, 10/22).