Glynis Breakwell

Professor Dame DBE, DL, CPsychol, FBPsS, FRSA, PFHEA, HonFBPsS, FAcSS, BA, MSc, MA, PhD, DSc, LLD (Hon), DPhil (Hon.), DUniv (Hon.), Prof. Dame

Personal profile

Research interests

Professor Dame Glynis Breakwell DBE, DL, President and Vice-Chancellor of the University of Bath, is one of Europe’s leading social psychologist and in 2014 was named in the Science Council’s list of ‘100 leading UK practising scientists’. Dame Glynis is an active public policy adviser and researcher specialising in leadership, identity processes and risk management and has produced over 20 books including, most recently, the second edition of The Psychology of Risk.

Dame Glynis took her PhD from the University of Bristol and DSc from the University of Oxford where she held a Prize Fellowship at Nuffield College. In 2004, in recognition of her contribution to the social sciences, she was awarded an Honorary Doctorate of Laws from the University of Bristol and in 2004 became an Honorary Professor at the University of Shandong in China. She has been a Fellow of the British Psychological Society since 1987 and is a chartered health psychologist. In 2002 she was elected an Academician of the Academy of Social Sciences, and in 2006 became an Honorary Fellow of the British Psychological Society. She has also been a Principal Fellow of the Higher Education Academy since March 2016.

Dame Glynis has nationally championed the role of universities in scientific and technological innovation, exploitation and economic regeneration, and has worked over many years to widen participation in science and achieve knowledge transfer from higher education to business. In 2012 this work was recognised when she was appointed Dame Commander of the Order of the British Empire in the Queen's New Year Honours for services to higher education.

In addition to her role as Vice-Chancellor, Dame Glynis holds a number of senior positions both nationally and internationally and has acted as an adviser to the higher education sector, government organisations, multi-national corporations and not-for-profit organisations. Dame Glynis’ external roles include: Director of Universities Superannuation Scheme (USS), Director of Universities UK (UUK) and Non-Executive Director of the National Health Service (NHS) Improvement Board.  She is a member of the Economic & Social Research Council (ESRC).

Expertise related to UN Sustainable Development Goals

In 2015, UN member states agreed to 17 global Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) to end poverty, protect the planet and ensure prosperity for all. This person’s work contributes towards the following SDG(s):

  • SDG 3 - Good Health and Well-being
  • SDG 5 - Gender Equality
  • SDG 8 - Decent Work and Economic Growth
  • SDG 13 - Climate Action
  • SDG 16 - Peace, Justice and Strong Institutions


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