Until October 2011 I held the Mont Follick Chair of Comparative Philology in the School of Languages, Linguistics & Cultures. I am now retired and have the title Professor Emeritus of General & Romance Linguistics, which is a more explicit indication of my research and teaching interests. I am a former President of the Philological Society and of the International Society for Historical Linguistics. I am a Fellow of the British Academy, where I was Vice-President for Research and HE Policy from 2010 to 2014, and a member of the Academia Europaea. I served as President of the Permanent International Committee of Linguists for the period 2013-4.
I completed my undergraduate and graduate studies at the University of Cambridge and have held lecturing posts at the Universities of London (Birkbeck College), Lancaster, Hull and Cambridge. I was an Erskine Fellow at the University of Canterbury (NZ) in 2000 and have held visiting posts at the Universities of Copenhagen, Pavia and Rome. In RAE 2008 I was chair of Main Panel M, which included Modern Languages, Celtic Studies, Linguistics and English Language & Literature.
In 2007 I was the surprised and very pleased recipient of a Festschrift on the occasion of my 60th birthday entitled Sui dialetti italoromanzi. Saggi in onore di Nigel B. VIncent edited by two of my former PhD students Delia Bentley and Adam Ledgeway.