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CNWL's Dr Paul Ramchandani becomes first Professor of Play at Cambridge

30 May 2017

CNWL’s Consultant Child and Adolescent Psychiatrist Dr Paul Ramchandani has been appointed head of a research centre into play-based education methods at the University of Cambridge. Dr Ramchandani, who is currently Professor of Child and Adolescent Mental Health at Imperial College, is the new Head of the Centre for Research on Play in Education, Development and Learning (PEDAL.)

Dr Ramchandani, who will take up the post next January, said he was “delighted” to have been awarded the professorship. “Everyone has an opinion about what role play should have in early education and there is some wonderful research, but there are also big gaps in our knowledge. We need the best evidence possible in order to inform the vital decisions that are made about children’s education and development and I look forward to taking that work forward together with colleagues at Cambridge.”

Jackie Shaw, Service Director CAMHS and Eating Disorders Service Line, said ‘As head of the centre, Professor Ramchandani will lead PEDAL’s research into the importance of play in education. Having worked closely with Paul, I know his expertise in child psychology and his passion for improving the lives of children, through Early Year’s research, will ensure his future success in influencing child development strategies. From all of us at CNWL, we wish him the best of luck (although I know he won’t need it!)”

The Centre was set up in 2015 with a £4 million grant from the LEGO Foundation. The facility examines the underlying brain processes involved in play, and uses this understanding to develop play-based education methods, which are shared with national and international policy makers.