Our team

Our core team are experts in innovation, entrepreneurship, productivity and business growth policy, with backgrounds in government and academia. We are experienced in working with government agencies and organisations aiming to become more experimental and data-driven, and have strong networks with policy and research communities.

James Phipps

James is Deputy Director at the Innovation Growth Lab (IGL).

Since joining IGL in 2016, James has overseen efforts to encourage policymakers to apply an experimental approach within innovation, entrepreneurship and business growth policy. He has worked with government ministries and innovation agencies around the world to develop and evaluate new ideas. 

Notable projects include BEIS’s Business Basics Fund, where James was pivotal to the experimental approach that was used to test and explore many different ways of encouraging small and medium-sized enterprises (SMEs) to take up productivity-boosting ways of working and technology. 

Before joining Nesta, James was Head of Enterprise Policy Development and Evaluation at the UK Business Department, where he led research into the rationale and effectiveness of public support for entrepreneurship and business growth. He was also instrumental in the department becoming more experimental and rigorous in its evaluation, which included a range of policy experiments from small messaging trials through to the £30m Growth Vouchers Programme.


Edoardo Trimarchi

Edoardo Trimarchi is Policy Lead for the Innovation Growth Lab (IGL).

In this role, Edoardo contributes to the development and growth of IGL’s programme of work to create more experimental policy ecosystems.

Before joining IGL in 2022, Edoardo was the Senior Policy Manager of the Abdul Latif Jameel Policy Action Lab (J-PAL) office for Latin America and the Caribbean in Santiago, Chile. For three years he led J-PAL LAC’s policy team in identifying opportunities to promote the use of evidence in policy making, built partnerships with governments, donors and civil society organisations across the region, and provided technical assistance for the scale-up and replication of successful interventions. He joined J-PAL LAC in 2017 as a Senior Research Associate working on a White Paper on youth crime and violence prevention in Mexico. Previously, he worked in Colombia with J-PAL LAC and Innovations for Poverty Action on a project for the institutionalisation of evidence use within the Monitoring and Public Policy Evaluation Unit of Colombia's National Department of Planning. 

Edoardo also conducted field research in Bolivia and Colombia, and interned at the Democratic Governance Unit of the United Nations Development Programme in the Dominican Republic. Edoardo has an MSc in Sustainable Development - International Development from Utrecht University and a BA in Economics from Bocconi University.


Nyangala Zolho

Nyangala is a Policy Learning Designer at the Innovation Growth Lab’s (IGL) Policy team.

She helps IGL partners and the wider policy community to share and learn from policy ideas.

Since joining Nesta in 2018, Nyangala has worked to deliver impact through strategic communications and programme design, having supported the delivery of Nesta’s 2030 strategy. Prior to Nesta, Nyangala worked for several years for a human rights and technology startup. She has worked for both profit and non-profit organisations to deliver programmes that are multidisciplinary and mission driven.

Nyangala has a degree in International Relations and holds a MA in Global Media and Transnational Communications from Goldsmith’s, University of London. Her personal interests tend to fall into three main categories: social justice, design and technology.