Information and communication technologies (ICT) contacts

Photo of Sam Francis

Sam Francis

Samantha Francis, Head of ICT

Sam has worked at EPSRC since 2007.  She took over leading the ICT Theme in 2017.

ICT Theme team

Working with Sam, there is a team of three Senior Portfolio Managers and seven Portfolio Managers. If you haven't found an answer to your question on these web pages or you just want to get in touch then please email or call one of us.  If the research area of your interest is not managed by one of our Portfolio Managers, please email and we will get back to you as soon as possible.

Each Portfolio Manager is responsible for a different section of the research portfolio as listed below. If you have questions relating to a specific Research Area, maybe you are concerned about the progress of a proposal, maybe you want to know more about our relevant strategies or maybe you want to invite us to something important in the area, then please get in touch with the Portfolio Manager looking after your area. We are always happy to talk to you and will endeavour to answer any queries as soon as we can.

Different schemes and different parts of our strategy are also looked after by different Portfolio Managers. Have a look at our responsibilities, listed below to see who might be best to talk to if you have concerns or questions, maybe relating to a specific scheme e.g. first grants or a strategy e.g. developing leaders, which aren't Research Area-specific.

If you can't find who or what you're looking for please still get in touch by emailing and we will point you in the right direction.

Michael Barclay, Portfolio Manager

Michael.Barclay@epsrc.ukri.org; 01793 444544

Michael joined EPSRC and the ICT Theme in 2017 as a Portfolio Manager. Michael coordinates the Data-Enabled Decision-Making cross-ICT priority and is the Theme contact for ICT Balancing Capability activities.  Michael manages the following Research Areas:

  • Software Engineering
  • Verification and Correctness
  • Databases
  • Information Systems

Natasha Richardson, Senior Portfolio Manager

Natasha.Richardson@epsrc.ukri.org; 01793 444362

Natasha has re-joined EPSRC in 2018. She has worked within the Research Councils since 2001.  Natasha manages the strategy for Cyber Security and coordinates Safe and Secure ICT and cross-ICT priority and she manages the following research areas:

  • Digital Signal Processing
  • Music and Acoustic Technology

Laura Cadman, Portfolio Manager

ICT.Theme@epsrc.ukri.org

Laura joined EPSRC and the ICT Theme in 2017 as a Portfolio Manager. Laura is the lead contact for the EPSRC National Epitaxy Facility and is the Theme contact for Strategic Equipment. Laura manages the following Research Areas:

  • Displays
  • Optoelectronic devices and circuits
  • Optical communications
  • Optical devices and subsystems

Achala de Mel, Portfolio Manager

achala.deMel@epsrc.ukri.org; 01793 444264

Achala joined EPSRC and the ICT Theme in November 2018 as a Portfolio Manager. Achala is the lead contact for National Epitaxy Facility and for ICT activities with National Science Foundation, US. She supports Jo Holbourn in managing CHIST-ERA.  Achala managers the People at the Heart of ICT, cross ICT priority strategy, and the following research areas:

  • Optoelectronic devices and circuits
  • Optical devices and subsystems
  • Optical communications

Ellie Gilvin, Senior Portfolio Manager

Ellie.Gilvin@epsrc.ukri.org; 01793 444260

Ellie joined EPSRC in 2013 and has worked in the ICT Theme as a Senior Portfolio Manager since 2015. Ellie coordinates the ICT SAT and the Theme's Impact activities. Ellie manages the following Research Areas:

  • Human Communication in ICT
  • Human Computer Interaction

Jo Holbourn, Portfolio Manager

joanne.holbourn@epsrc.ukri.org 01793 444397

Jo joined EPSRC in 2017 as a Portfolio Manager in the ICT theme. Jo is responsible for the ICT theme Building Leaders strategy and the ICT Discipline Hopping Call.  She is the theme contact for the ICT Fellowships, New Investigator Award and Strategic Equipment Schemes.  Jo also manages the international scheme CHIST-ERA as well as the following research areas:

  • Image and Vision Computing
  • Computer Graphics and Visualisation
  • Vision Hearing & Other Senses
  • Speech Technologies
  • Biological Informatics

Renée van de Locht: Senior Portfolio Manager

Renee.vandelocht@epsrc.ukri.org; 01793 444087

Renée joined EPSRC in 2014 and has worked in the ICT Theme as a Senior Portfolio Manager since 2017.  Renée coordinates the ICT Peer Review including standard mode panels and the People at the Heart of ICT cross-ICT priority.  Renée manages the strategy of the following topics:

  • Natural Language Processing
  • Artificial Intelligence 

Luis Lopez-Bracey, Portfolio Manager

Luis.Lopez-Bracey@epsrc.ukri.org; 01793 444247

Luis joined EPSRC and the ICT Theme as a Portfolio Manager in 2018 and is responsible for Dark Fibre Facility and is the theme contact for Programme Grants and manages the following Research Areas:

  • RF and Microwave Devices
  • RF and microwave communications
  • ICT Networks and distributed systems
  • Pervasive and Ubiquitous Systems

Sarah Newman, Portfolio Manager

Sarah.Newman@epsrc.ukri.org; 01793 444581

Sarah joined EPSRC in 2015 and has worked in the ICT Theme as a Portfolio Manager since January 2016. Sarah coordinates the Cross-Disciplinarity and Co-Creation cross-ICT priority and is the Theme contact for Remit Queries. Sarah leads on the Theme’s Equality and Diversity activities and supports Ellie with the Theme's Impact activities. She also coordinates the Themes’ Responsible Innovation in ICT activity and manages the following Research Areas:

  • Microelectronics Device Technology
  • Microelectronics Design

Rhys Perry, Portfolio Manager

Rhys.Perry@epsrc.ukri.org; 01793 444466

Rhys joined EPSRC and the ICT Theme in November 2018 as a Portfolio Manager. Rhys is responsible for the New & Emerging areas cross-ICT priority, supports Jo Holbourn as contact for ICT Fellowships and manages the following research areas:

  • Theoretical Computer Science
  • Programming Languages and Compilers
  • Architectures and Operating Systems

Cross-ICT team priorities

The following Research Areas and cross-ICT priorities are managed by the whole ICT team. If you have any questions about them please email and we will get back to you:

  • Future Intelligent Technologies