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A Few Words About TheHill

Oxford has a wealth of talent, intellect and people, but until recently the scale of this potential has not been matched in terms of health innovations outputs deriving from the city and region.  We built TheHill to bring together traditional Oxford strengths of academic excellence and rigour with West Coast vibrancy and enthusiasm in order to help ignite the next generation of healthcare innovations. We work and collaborate with the clinical, academic, and entrepreneurial communities, both institutions and other bodies, and support and champion the people working in this field in Oxford, the Thames Valley in order to support health innovation in the region and ensure Oxford fulfils its potential to be a world leading centre.
Our Team
Our team brings together a wide range of expertise from the clinical, research, digital and commercial worlds, with combined decades of experience in innovation and delivery.
Dr Alexander Finlayson, MBBS

Co-founder, Director

Alexander is an academic medical doctor, researcher at the Dept of Primary Healthcare Sciences, and a Doll Fellow at Green Templeton College.  He was a Kennedy Scholar at Harvard University, where he came up with the idea to found the digital health platform Medicine Africa which supports medical education in places like Somalia through partnerships with UK universities and hospitals.  He founded the 2023 Challenge, and innovation fund embedded in the NHS, and has been a team member of Digital Health Oxford since 2015.
Dr Richie Harrington, PhD

Co-founder, Director

Richie is a postdoctoral researcher at the Nuffield Dept of Population Health, working as a data scientist with a focus on prevention of non-communicable diseases through diet and nutrition.  He previous completed a PhD in bioinformatics and molecular evolution at the University of Cambridge.  Richie founded Digital Health Oxford, a non-profit organisation that supports and promotes the cross-sector and cross-disciplinary digital health community in Oxford.
Dr Nick de Pennington, BM BCh FRCS

Co-founder, Director

Nick is a qualified neurosurgeon, Cambridge- and Oxford-trained, and currently Digital Health Innovation Lead at Oxford University Hospitals NHS Foundation Trust.  He conceived, led the development and  implementation of OARS (Oxford Acute Referals System) to electronically manage referrals to specialist services at the OUH Trust, working with a team of clinicians, designers, software engineers, and hospital IT staff. He is also founder of Ufonia, a company using speech based artificial intelligence to monitor patients with chronic disease.
Dr Nick Scott Ram, PhD, MBE


Nick is Director of Commercial Development at the Oxford Academic Health Science Network, responsible for the wealth creation and commercial development programme at the AHSN.  He has a PhD from Cambridge University, and over 25 years of experience in commercial and business development in the life sciences sector.  Nick also has experience in e-health and personalised health and his interests include the role of open innovation systems to support more rapid R&D. He was awarded the MBE for services to biotechnology in 2001.


Chris Goard


Chris is a non-executive director on the board of Oxford University Hospitals NHS Foundation Trust, with a wide range of positions in charitable and health-related organisations. He was previously Chair of the Nuffield Orthopaedic Centre NHS Trust, and is Chairman of the Genetic Interest Group, an umbrella organisation for over 170 charities, and represents the interests of their patient groups with the NHS, Government and Pharmaceutical companies. He is a member of the Appeals Board of the Prescription Medicines Code of Practice Authority, a Magistrate in the Adult and Family Courts in Thames Valley and a Fellow of the Royal Society of Arts and a Fellow of the Institute of Direct Marketing. Chris is Vice Chairman of the Audit Committee and a member of the Finance and Performance Committee, Quality Committee and Remuneration and Appointments Committee.
Prof Sir Muir Gray


Sir Muir is an internationally renowned authority on healthcare systems and has advised governments of several countries outside the UK including Australia, New Zealand, Italy, Spain and Germany.  Sir Muir establishing and then was Director of the UK National Screening Committee, he founded the National Library for Health, and was the Director of Clinical Knowledge, Process, and Safety for the NHS (England) National Programme for IT, serving as the Director of the National Knowledge Service.  He was the first person to hold the post of Chief Knowledge Officer of the NHS (England).  Together with Sir Iain Chalmers, Muir was instrumental in establishing the Cochrane Collaboration.  Sir Muir works in the Value Based Healthcare theme within the Nuffield Department of Primary Care Health Sciences, and is a Visiting Professor in the Nuffield Department of Surgical Sciences at the University of Oxford.  He received the CBE in 2000 and was knighted in 2005 for services to the National Health Service. Sir Muir is founder and director of Better Value Healthcare, a company which promotes the practice of value-based healthcare for individuals and organisations in the healthcare sector. BVHC creates and disseminates training materials, delivers training courses, and engages in consultancy to help the key players in healthcare understand and increase value in their services.
Geraldine Murphy

Project Manager

Geraldine is a Project Manager at the Oxford Academic Health Science Network.  She previously gained extensive experience of NHS acute patient pathways while working at the Royal College of Psychiatrists Centre for Quality Improvement setting national standards for a wide range of mental health services. She has also worked operationally as Thames Valley Trauma Network Manager.