Phil helped found the Institute of Cultural Capital (ICC) in 2010 as a joint venture between Liverpool John Moores University (LJMU) and the University of Liverpool that would build upon the success of culture-led regeneration experienced in Liverpool during its European Capital of Culture year in 2008. Best known for creating three of Britain’s longest running drama programmes — Grange Hill (1978–2008), Brookside (1982–2003) and Hollyoaks (1995–present) — Phil has written extensively for radio, television and the stage. One of the first 2 per cent to go through the comprehensive system, in 1989, he was appointed Honorary Chair of Media at LJMU, and, since 1993, has been a Fellow, as well as founder and Chair, of the International Centre for Digital Content (ICDC) — in addition to serving as Chair of the Liverpool Screen School (also based at LJMU). He was elevated to the position of Ambassador Fellow by LJMU in 2010, in recognition of his outstanding personal contributions to the university and for his continued commitment to the city.
Phil is a founder member of the first regional branch of the British Academy of Film and Television Arts (BAFTA), in Manchester; a former council member of the Independent Producer’s Association (IPPA), and a former national negotiator for the Writer’s Guild of Great Britain (WGGB). In 1996, Phil was elected as a Fellow of the Royal Society of Arts and, in 1997, was also appointed Vice Chair of the newly created North West Film Commission — becoming a Patron of the Commission in July 1999. He was awarded a CBE in June 2004 for services to drama in the Queen’s Birthday Honours list. In June 2005, Phil and Alexis Redmond sold Mersey Television (MerseyTV) — at the time, still Britain’s largest independent drama production house, employing over 700 people and 3000 actors per year — and “downsized” to a small film production company. One of the acknowledged strengths of MerseyTV was its links to and support of education and culture, with Brookside becoming an integral part of the National Year of Reading in 1998 through the “Brookie Basics” literacy clinics. Throughout 2006, Phil was Chair of the Merseyside Entrepreneurship Commission and in 2009–10 chaired the Knowsley Youth Commission.
Phil joined Liverpool’s Capital of Culture Board in November 2006 and became Deputy Chair and Creative Director in September 2007 — a responsibility which he described as akin to taking on the organisation of a “typically Scouse wedding”. As the public face of Liverpool’s time as host city for the UK’s award of European Capital of Culture, Phil is proud that the year is now seen as a benchmark for cultural success that saw an £850m impact on the city during the year. Phil also became Chair of National Museums Liverpool during 2008, whilst in 2009 he was asked by the UK Government to chair both the Working Party and, later, the Independent Advisory Panel for the UK City of Culture programme, to build on the success of Liverpool in 2008.
In 2010, Phil received Honorary Doctorates from the University of Liverpool and the University of Chester, in recognition of his contributions to culture and drama. In 2011, he decided to return to his roots — and start writing fiction again.
Robin is the Pro-Vice-Chancellor (Scholarship, Research and Knowledge Transfer) at Liverpool John Moores University. Until August 2013, he was Dean for the Faculty of Natural Sciences, Chair of Chemical Biology and Head of the Chemical Biology Section within the Chemistry Department at Imperial College London. He is one of the leading UK chemical biologists and has been greatly involved in the promotion and development of this new area of chemistry over recent years. His research is concerned with molecular recognition between proteins and their ligands, which involves a multidisciplinary blend of physical and biological sciences, ranging from structural biology, through enzymology to synthetic chemistry. A leading exponent of protein engineering, he was involved at the outset in pioneering work in this area along with Sir Alan Fersht. Since then, he has advanced methods to study ligand binding, particularly concerning enzyme-inhibitor interactions. His work on the study and rational design of enzyme inhibitors has attracted considerable industrial interest from leading pharmaceutical companies. Most of his research efforts involve the application of biophysical or chemical tools to new areas of biology. He has particular interest in peptide synthesis, modern enzymology and developing new enzyme inhibitors. Biological interests include the action of protease enzymes as well as other peptide-modifying enzymes.
Professor Fiona Beveridge
Fiona is Executive Pro-Vice-Chancellor of the Faculty of Humanities and Social Sciences. Fiona specialises in EU Social law, especially gender equality. Her work focuses on law and policy-making processes and the ways in which gender equality concerns can be addressed in these areas. She has a particular expertise in gender mainstreaming (that is, the idea that gender concerns should be addressed systematically in all areas and by all actors), and how this is implemented in international institutions, the EU, and in individual states. Fiona has published extensively in this area, with articles on gender mainstreaming in the devolved parts of the UK, in international trade institutions, in the process of accession to the EU, as well as within the EU’s own policy-making processes. She is particularly interested in the interaction between ‘soft’ policy and ‘hard’ law in the equality field. Fiona teaches EU law.