Alice Brown, professor of politics and a vice-principal at the University of Edinburgh, is to become the first Scottish public-sector ombudsman. She was appointed by a cross-party selection panel of the Scottish Parliament chaired by presiding officer Sir David Steel. Her £72,000 appointment now has to be confirmed by the Queen.
Professor Brown was a member of the cross-party consultative steering group that helped draw up the rules and procedures for the Scottish Parliament.
The work of the new office is due to begin after the summer recess, the first job being to oversee the merger of existing ombudsman offices, currently covering parliament, health, local government and housing associations, into a "one-stop shop" for complaints from the public.
Professor Brown, aged 56, is expected to leave Edinburgh University where she has worked since 1985 and is co-director of the Institute of Governance.