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DEREK MAIN

Research communications | Writing | Editing

ABOUT ME

I am a professional and versatile native English writer and communications expert with more than 10 years’ experience partnering with researchers and business leaders to turn big ideas into content for top publications, such as Harvard Business ReviewThe Financial TimesThe EconomistCity AMThe Conversation, and the Huffington Post

 

I specialize in translating complex research and insights from the fields of management, finance, technology, economics, sustainability, and entrepreneurship, into features, opinion, blogs, books, web copy and papers that resonate with mainstream and leadership audiences.

 

I conduct in-depth interviews with my clients to understand what they want to say, why and where, and ghost-write authoritative and engaging copy in their voice.

Before embarking on a freelance career, I spent more than four years as The University of Edinburgh Business School's first PR & Communications Manager. In this role, I brought a renewed focus to the School’s research reputation and implemented a modern, reader-centered approach to research communications, including Research Excellence Framework (REF) Impact case studies, funding applications, and partnership proposals.

I also offer native English substantive editing, copyediting, and development editing of academic papers and books. I edit for syntax, grammar, clarity, and consistency, following journal or publisher's style guidelines. 

 
 

TESTIMONIALS

Professor Paolo Quattrone, Chair in Accounting Governance & Social Innovation at The University of Edinburgh. 

I’ve worked with Derek on a number of projects and found him to be one of the few who really knows what my research is about and how it differs from consulting. He spent time and asked the right intelligent questions to build an understanding of what I do and why it matters. Derek writes about research in a clear and authoritative way that grabs readers’ attention, without removing any of its credibility.

Professor Arman Eshraghi, Professor of Finance and Investment at Cardiff University.  

I am impressed by Derek’s skills in creating engaging narratives based on research articles, working with the media and writing impactful and gripping stories. On a number of occasions, his help was crucial to me and my colleagues in promoting our research which eventually found its way to leading business publications such as Forbes and the Harvard Business Review.

Stephanie Mullins, Account Director and Deputy Head of Education Practice at BlueSky PR

I thoroughly enjoyed working with Derek - his unwavering professionalism, quick responses, and knack for knowing what's newsworthy impressed me from the beginning. He has a natural talent for storytelling and creating engaging content. I would recommend him wholeheartedly.

Ritesh Kotak, Cyber security expert and MBA graduate. 

It is rare to come across somebody with Derek’s talents. His ability to coach and write compelling pieces is truly remarkable.  He provided me coaching and mentorship which led to my work being published in within the Financial Times, the Economist and several other publications. This would have not been possible without his assistance. I absolutely recommend him.

SERVICES

I spend time with my clients and ask the right questions to help them find their voice.

I believe expert ideas have never been more important.

FOR ACADEMICS AND THOUGHT LEADERS

I work one-to-one with knowledge experts to help them translate complex ideas, provoke, and engage their audience while maintaining credibility. I interview my clients to understand what they want to say and ghostwrite authoritative and engaging copy in their voice. I apply my skills writing for the media to edit and add polish to academic texts.

  • Blogs 

  • Media opinion and thought leadership

  • Media commentary

  • Public relations

  • Substantive and copy editing of texts and books

FOR INSTITUTIONS

I understand the challenges research support professionals face. I provide practical and pragmatic support to maximize the impact and recognition of research. I use storytelling and communications best practice to write Research Excellence Framework (REF) Impact case studies, industry partnership proposals, and funding applications that deliver on strategic goals.

  • REF Impact case studies 

  • Strategic research communications

  • Editorials and features

  • Bid narratives

  • Industry collaboration case studies

  • Annual reports

FOR BUSINESS

I draw on my experience working with big thinkers to help businesses shape their insights, and create original copy which positions them as experts in their field. I work with senior professionals to shape their tone of voice and hone key messages. I help them become thought leaders.

  • Media opinion and thought leadership

  • Stakeholder, staff and change communications

  • Speechwriting

  • Impact reports and white papers