Welcome to Thriving at Oxford 2023 and Wellbeing at work keynote

The welcome address followed by the keynote speech was delivered at the Andrew Wiles Building, Lecture Theatre 2, on Monday 12 June 11:30-12:30. 

Event details

Professor Irene Tracey, Vice-Chancellor, delivered an address opening Thriving at Oxford 2023.

Prof Jan-Emmanuel De Neve, Director of Oxford’s Wellbeing Research Centre, shared insights from the world’s largest study of employee wellbeing. 

Conducted in partnership with recruitment site Indeed, more than 15million surveys have been completed as part of the Work Wellbeing Score study since its inception in late 2019. 




About the speakers

prof irene tracey

Professor Irene Tracey - University of Oxford Vice-Chancellor

Vice-Chancellor Professor Irene Tracey CBE FMedSci, led Merton College from 2019-22 and is also Professor of Anaesthetic Neuroscience in the Nuffield Department of Clinical Neurosciences, a department she led for several years. She was tenured in 2001 to the Department of Physiology, Anatomy and Genetics with Tutorial Fellowship in Medicine at Christ Church. Additionally, she held the Nuffield Chair in Anaesthetic Sciences for 12 years with a Fellowship at Pembroke College.

She is also President of the Federation of European Neuroscience Societies (FENS).

Professor Tracey's research on the neuroscience of pain has contributed to a better understanding of pain perception and its relief in the human brain. She has also used neuroimaging to better understand anaesthesia-induced altered states of consciousness. Irene has served and continues to serve academia through her election to the Councils of the International Association for the Study of Pain, British Neuroscience Association, and Medical Research Council. She was appointed a Commander of the Order of the British Empire (CBE) for services to Medical Research by Her Majesty The Queen in 2022.

Professor Tracey completed her undergraduate degree and doctorate at Merton College, Oxford, in biochemistry; her doctoral work focused on early use of magnetic resonance imaging methods to study disease mechanisms.

Professor Tracey held a postdoctoral position at Harvard Medical School, working at the Martinos Centre for Biomedical Imaging, before returning to Oxford in 1997, when she became a founding member and then Director for ten years of the world-leading institution now known as the Wellcome Centre for Integrative Neuroimaging. She has won many academic and international prizes throughout her career. Professor Tracey is married to Professor Myles Allen and they have three children.


jan emmanuel de neve

Professor Jan-Emmanuel De Neve - Professor of Economics and Behavioural Science, Saïd Business School, Vice-Principal, Harris Manchester College, Director, Wellbeing Research Centre and Editor, World Happiness Report

Prof. Jan-Emmanuel De Neve is Director of the Wellbeing Research Centre at the University of Oxford and a Professor of Economics and Behavioural Science at the Saïd Business School, Oxford. He is also a co-founder and director of the World Wellbeing Movement. 

Jan’s research interests are in behavioural economics, public policy and human wellbeing. 

His research has been published in academic outlets such as Science, Nature, The Review of Economics and Statistics, Journal of Political Economy, Psychological Science, The British Medical Journal, and The Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences (PNAS). The underlying theme throughout his research is the study of human wellbeing. This ongoing research agenda has led to new insights in the relationship between happiness and income, productivity, economic growth, and inequality. His research was selected among 'The Management Ideas that Mattered Most' by the Harvard Business Review and he was awarded the inaugural Ruut Veenhoven Award for his contributions to the scientific study of happiness. 

Jan is an editor of the World Happiness Report alongside John Helliwell, Richard Layard, Jeffrey Sachs, Lara Aknin and Shun Wang. 

He is a frequent advisor to governments and businesses, including the Gallup Organization and start-ups such as Psychological Technologies, Aula, and Butterfly AI. 


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