John Selby is a sociologist by background. Following completion of a PhD at McMaster University in Ontario, he spent 26 years teaching at Coventry Polytechnic/University. He joined HEFCE in 1999 and, after some years as a Regional Consultant, he became Director (Education and Participation), retiring in 2010. Since then, he has served as chair of the OFFA Advisory Group, is a Trustee of the Brightside Trust and a Governor at Hartpury College. He is a Visiting Research Fellow at the University of the West of England.