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European Spallation Source hunts for new head as director resigns

Research facility says pandemic-induced remote working behind John Womersley’s decision to step down

John Womersley has resigned with immediate effect as the director-general of the European Spallation Source, a research infrastructure being built near Lund, Sweden, with the research facility citing issues with his remote working as a result of the Covid-19 pandemic.

“This challenging phase at ESS requires strong and present leadership on site. With the travel restrictions caused by the pandemic, John is unable to travel to Lund and has, for extended periods, been leading ESS from his home in Scotland,” the ESS said on 9 March. “Consequently, John has, after careful consideration, decided to step aside immediately.”

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