Featured Member

Meet Geraldine Clough, BSc Ph.D.- Emeritus Professor of Vascular Physiology at the University of Southampton

New Emeritus Member


"My route to a personal chair in Vascular Physiology in the Faculty of Medicine, University of Southampton, UK was via a BSc in Physiology (1973) and PhD (1977) on ‘’The influence of the interstitium on the mechanical and transport properties of the microvasculature’’ at University College London, a Research Fellowship in the University of Oxford and Lectureship at Imperial College London, UK. It also included a brief career pause for the birth of my two children after which my return to research in the University of Southampton was supported by one of the very first Wellcome Trust Re-entry Fellowships (1996-2000) and University Award (2000-2005). I remained in the University of Southampton as University Reader and then Professor until my retirement in 2018. I am now Professor Emeritus there. I have also been a Visiting Professor at Southern Medical University PR China (2008-2011) and am currently Visiting Professor in the BHF Centre of Research Excellence at King’s College London UK (2015-2021).   


My career-long research passion has been the microcirculation and its capacity to contribute to cardio-metabolic disease risk. I have studied this in collaboration with a multidisciplinary team of biologists, bioengineers and clinicians both in human cohorts and in animal models, using a range of in vivo and ex vivo imaging approaches.


I have been fortunate enough to pursue my commitment to support early stage career scientists through a number of senior roles including as a member of Council of the Physiological Society and as a Senior Editor and member of the Executive Committee of the Journal of Physiology.  I have also championed the field of microcirculation as President of the British Microcirculation Society, member of the International Liaison Committee for Microcirculation, and as a member of the editorial board of Microcirculation where I was Deputy Editor in Chief for 6 years.


I would not have achieved all of this without the support and encouragement of my academic mentors, including Professor Laurence Smaje (my doctoral supervisor, and Ben Zweifach's student!) and Professor Charles Michel (with whom I worked for over 14 years in Oxford and London) and with both of whom I continue to engage."


When asked about what advice or professional strategies she would give to young professionals in the society that have (or will have) children, Dr. Clough had the following to say:

"Reflecting on what you ask about how I managed the success I had with two sons in the picture.
It was all about
·         Owning my choices  (not regretting for too long when I couldn’t get to an overseas meeting etc)
·         Being publicly proud of my achievements and  my desire to progress (being a role model and doing things like this)
·         Prioritising and then making and breaking endless ‘to do’ lists (don't we all)
·         Being honest with myself and my colleagues about work/family conflicts and what I could/couldn’t do (men have to do school runs too)
·         Having an understanding and supportive head of department/senior colleagues  (still my friends and mentors) and long suffering family (both of my boys seem to have turned out OK)
I also wrote this blog last year for International Women’s Day on the gender disparity in confidence that seems to affect women’s progression. It sort of sums up my feelings."


Posted February 1st, 2019