Chris Orton is Inflammation and Immunity’s Technical Lead based within Population Data Science at Swansea University Medical School.

Although vast, vibrant and brimming with potential, the UK’s health data landscape is a highly fragmented environment. Research groups operating within it often face complex and sensitive challenges around data security, availability, access and linkage.

Thankfully, Chris has an expert view of these matters. As Technical Lead he provides invaluable insights into practical, technical solutions that will allow us to navigate this landscape and connect with its key players – data custodians, Trusted Research Environments and other research groups. After countless experiences working with such groups on the regional, national and international level, Chris understands that these ambitions depend on extensive negotiation, collaboration and cooperation.

His guidance will help ensure that Inflammation and Immunity:

  • Is soundly rooted within and progresses proportionately across the four UK nations;
  • Is at the forefront of technical developments that increase the efficiency of UK-wide study;
  • Generates UK-wide results;
  • Delivers impactful outputs, observations and understanding of respiratory and wider inflammatory and immunity-based conditions to the public eye; and
  • Influences care providers and government policy

Outside of the programme, Chris works within a world-leading research and data infrastructure team at Swansea University who support thousands of researchers worldwide. They are embedded in several national initiatives in improving data access, technical capability for research, and bridging the gap between policy-facing research and the tools needed to undertake such work. In particular, Chris manages several research initiatives involving the SAIL Databank and Secure eResearch Platform (SeRP).

“I hope to establish common practices and technical solutions across Inflammation and Immunity to increase the efficiency of UK-wide study, as well as enhancing the tools and systems available to researchers in order to drive impactful science.”