After more than 30 years at the University of Bath, Jane Millar retired in July as Professor of Social Policy but will continue as Emeritus Professor.

Since joining the University in 1988 Jane has held several impressive roles at the University. She was Head of the Department of Social and Policy Sciences (1997 – 2000), Deputy Dean of the Faculty of Humanities and Social Sciences (2003 to 2005), Pro-Vice-Chancellor (Strategic Development) (2006 - 2008) and Pro-Vice-Chancellor (Research) 2008 - 2015).

Throughout her time at the University, Jane has led world-class research on the design, implementation and impact of social policy, particularly family policy, social security and employment policy, with particular reference to gender and changing family patterns. Her work has included cross-national and comparative studies across Europe and a number of visiting fellowships in Australia. Most recently, she leads on the ESRC-funded project ‘Couples balancing work, money and care: exploring the shifting landscape under Universal Credit’ at the Institute for Policy Research (IPR). In 2001, Jane was awarded an OBE for her services to social policy research and teaching.

On her contributions to the University and social policy research, former Head of the Department of Social and Policy Sciences, Professor Joe Devine says:

"Jane’s contribution to Social and Policy Sciences at Bath has been colossal. As a researcher, she has been at the forefront of social policy debates; as a teacher, she has mentored individuals who have gone on to be very successful in their own fields; as an academic leader, she has been central to the promotion of social and policy sciences at the University and beyond.

"All of us in the Department of Social and Policy Sciences at Bath are very proud of her. In her career, Jane moved effortlessly between the pressures of her many leadership roles and the fun of just spending time with colleagues over coffee. She knew how to lead others but also how to be a good friend. Over the years, Jane has received many public awards for her numerous achievements. With her retirement however, there will be even more personal ‘thank you’ thoughts from many individuals across the globe acknowledging the influence she has had in their lives.”

Director of the IPR, Professor Nick Pearce adds:

"Jane has made an enormous contribution to social policy in the UK and beyond. She is not just an outstanding academic researcher and teacher, but a hugely influential figure in public policy debates on social security, family policy and employment.

She is admired and respected as much by civil servants and campaigning organisations as by her academic peers. She has also shown exemplary commitment to the students she has taught and supervised, and to the advancement of early career social policy researchers. Social policy as a discipline is stronger and better because of her contribution.

Outside of the University, Jane has held multiple roles across several organisations. Currently, she is Trustee of the British Academy and of the Child Poverty Action Group (CPAG), and Chair of the Social Sciences Panel for REF2021.

Prior to this, Jane was elected as a Fellow of the Academy of Social Sciences (2000) and as a Fellow of the British Academy (2014); a Special Adviser to the House of Commons Select Committee for Work and Pensions (2004 and 2007) and to the House of Lords Economic Affairs Committee (2020); Chair of the Economic and Social Research Council (ESRC) Grants Assessment Panel C (2016-2020) and Chair of the Social Policy Association (SPA) from (2016 – 2019).

Chair of the SPA, Professor Karen Rowlingson, adds:

It is difficult to think of anyone in recent years who has played a more significant role in relation to supporting social policy research and education than Jane Millar - as recognised by the Social Policy Association (SPA) in 2020 with her thoroughly deserved 'Outstanding Achievement' award.

As Chair of the SPA from 2016-2019 she ensured that we had a clear and comprehensive five-year strategy to guide us, while also maintaining a very strong financial position, which has enabled us to withstand the many challenges of the Covid-19 pandemic and continue supporting social policy research over the last couple of turbulent years.

Jane was also a great help to me, personally, when taking on the role of SPA Chair after her - which was a very daunting prospect given how well she had led the association! She has been a mentor and role model to many, many students and colleagues over the years - finding time to support individuals when she also had many institutional responsibilities and pressures.

We very much hope to see Jane at future SPA conferences and wish her all the very best for the future.

As Emeritus Professor, Jane will remain with the IPR to support the final stages of ‘Couples balancing work, money and care: exploring the shifting landscape under Universal Credit’ and continue doctoral supervision; as well as continue in her roles for REF2021, the British Academy, and CPAG.

We would like to sincerely thank Jane for her years of dedication and support to the IPR, to the Department of Social and Policy Sciences and to the University and wish her all the very best in this next chapter.