Dr Thompson graduated from the University of Nottingham with a degree in Botany and a PhD in Plant Biotechnology. From there she had a successful research career in the Agricultural Biotechnology sector, most recently with Zeneca Seeds (Syngenta). She went on to spend several years in the Research Councils (Biotechnology and Biological Sciences Research Council, Science and Technology Facilities Council) developing expertise in corporate governance, research funding strategy and policy, evaluation methodology, programme management and managing large-scale facilities. Moving to Imperial College London in 2008, she held both operational and strategic roles, first as Director of Research Strategy and then as Programme Director for the Institute of Shock Physics, where she led a successful bid for a £2.5M, five-year AWE contract to secure the Institute's future. At the end of February 2014 Dr Thompson joined CDS, Shrivenham as a member of the CDS Executive Team in the new post of Director of Strategy and Resources.
In her current role, Dr Thompson works with the PVC Research and Innovation to: develop research and innovation strategy, policy and effective governance; manage relationships with government funding agencies; lead the strategic relationships with AWE and Dstl; coordinate bid submissions; lead delivery of the REF 2020 submission; and provide policy support for Doctoral Training Centres.
Chris Thompson took up the post of Director of Research & Innovation on 1 August 2014 bringing with her over ten years of senior research management experience gained in Research Councils, Imperial College London and a short secondment on research impact in the Department of Business, Innovation and Skills