Dr Lisa Ryan is the Head of Department of Natural Sciences in the School of Science and Computing at GMIT.
Dr Ryan has an extensive background in working with the food industry and providing training and education in food. She has a first class honours degree in Nutritional Science and a PhD in Nutritional Biochemistry from University College Cork (UCC), Ireland. Her first postdoctoral experience was an Enterprise Ireland-funded project involving a collaboration between the Chemistry department and the Nutrition department at UCC. She subsequently embarked on a Science Foundation Ireland-funded postdoctoral research fellow.
Dr Ryan moved to the UK to a Senior Lectureship at Bournemouth University before moving on to another Senior Lectureship at Oxford Brookes University in 2008 where she joined the Functional Food Centre (FFC) and established the Phytochemical Research Group. In 2010 she was asked to take over the running of the FFC as Operations Director and turned the research centre into one of the few profit-generating organisations within the University. Dr Ryan was invited to Monash University in Melbourne, Australia, to help establish the BASE (Be Active Sleep & Eat) Research Facility and lead the Functional Food research stream. Dr Ryan has attracted considerable research income in the area of phytochemicals and functional foods.
To date she has worked with over 50 food industry partners including small discrete projects and larger clinical trials and has also attracted research funding from competitive funding agencies such as the Medical Research Council (MRC, UK), The Nuffield Trust (UK) and The Wellcome Trust (UK). In 2015, Dr Ryan was awarded the prestigious Agrifood Fellowship in Australia to investigate the potential of marine polyphenols as anti-diabetic agents.
Role in relation to CEF project:
Dr Ryan is the Project Supervisor and Lead of Creating Entrepreneurs in Food. She is widely published (>100) in the area of functional foods and has given many invited national and international presentations. Dr Ryan is also highly experienced in liaising with the food industry and budding food entrepreneurs and in providing applied training programmes to facilitate industry needs and foster entrepreneurial spirit. To this end, Dr Ryan will oversee the development and implementation of the project and will evaluate and approve that quality standards are achieved throughout.