We Are CurvedThinking

Ruth Bell


Founder of CurvedThinking in 1993, Ruth is an economist and expert researcher, business strategist, trainer and consultant, deploying techniques and insights gained from more than twenty five years professional experience. She is CurvedThinking’s lead for health, education and communications.


She has conducted hundreds of focus groups, interviews and stakeholder consultations with respondents of all ages and diverse backgrounds, seeks to make the experience productive for the project but also enjoyable and stimulating for participants.


Ruth’s analytical expertise and fluent communications deliver comprehensible insights and clear answers to complex questions. Recent projects include testing patient attitudes to NHS reform to inform change strategies; longitudinal research of the student experience to improve recruitment and retention; and donor attitudes charitable activity and routes to more effective fundraising. 


Prior to founding CurvedThinking Ruth was a senior planner at Bartle Bogle Hegarty in London, whilst there writing award winning, and subsequently published, paper for the IPA Advertising Effectiveness awards. 


Ruth is also trained and accredited as a mediator by CEDR (Centre for Effective Dispute Resolution – a world leading organisation in the field of alternative dispute resolution, dispute management and conflict prevention) and as a Community Mediator.


Ruth graduated with a Masters degree in Economics from Cambridge University.

John Bell


John is a highly experienced public policy analyst, researcher, evaluator and manager, and CurvedThinking's specialist in economic development, labour market and social policy. 


With more than twenty years experience in the UK and overseas, until 2009 he was CEO of ECOTEC, UK arm of the Ecorys group, Europe's largest independent applied economic and social research company, overseeing annual turnover of £80m and 500+ professional staff.


With experience in all parts of the policy cycle, John is at home with the full range of issues, techniques and solutions demanded by complex social and economic problems. He has extensive experience of major funding programmes including Local Growth Fund, City Deals, Growing Places, and all the European Structural and Investment Funds.  He is specialist advisor to the House of Lords European Union committee, leading on enquiries into youth unemployment, and training and social inclusion funding.  


As an acknowledged expert in public policy, John works with clients from local to international level to analyse problems, seek solutions and achieve change. Alongside consultancy and research assignments he is a long standing Masters level tutor in public policy for the Centre for Financial and Management Studies at the School of Oriental and African Studies (SOAS), University of London, where he has authoring courses on policy and programme evaluation; strategic planning and management; and public policy.


Policy research and consultancy is a networked sector, thriving on collaboration and information exchange.  CurvedThinking is exceptionally well connected with leading independent collaborators. When necessary we draw on specialist expertise and capacity to ensure assignments are delivered with the right experience, on time and budget.

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