I’m a reacher in the Department of Physics at the University of Oxford and a junior research fellow at New College. I also spend a lot of my time at the Adler Planetarium in Chicago, where I was Director of Citizen Science during a year off from Oxford.
I run The Zooniverse, a large and ever-growing collection of citizen science projects that allow anyone to make an authentic contribution to research. The Zooniverse grew from the Galaxy Zoo project which still fuels most of my research, but now includes everything from discovering planets to transcribing papyri.
Before arriving in Oxford, I was educated (with varying degrees of success) by Torquay Boys’ Grammar School, Magdalene College Cambridge and, for my PhD at University College London. I’m also strongly involved in what is slightly oddly known as popular science, most famililarly as co-presenter on the more than fifty-year-old Sky at Night program alongside Sir Patrick Moore, and most recently as coauthor of Bang!, with Patrick and Dr Brian May. The book was included on the longlist for the 2007 Royal Society Book Prize. As both are distinguished musicians and have CBEs, I have a lot to catch up on, which I will no doubt use as an excuse for the lack of updates on this site. I also have a regular column (on observing the night sky) in The Times and am trying to expand the range of writing I do.
Apart from astronomy, my interests are theatrical or foodie, or occasionally both. You might also find me at the odd Torquay United game, or amongst Section 8 in Chicago.