Professor Jim Al-Khalili

Professor Jim Al-Khalili smiling to the camera, sat in his office

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Organisation: University of Surrey
Tags: RISE, RISE: Leader, University of Surrey

Biography

Jim Al-Khalili received his PhD in nuclear physics in 1989 from the University of Surrey, then took up a SERC Postdoctoral Fellowship at UCL. He returned to Surrey as a Research Assistant, then as a temporary lecturer. In 1994, he was awarded a five year EPSRC Advanced Fellowship and during that time became established as a leading expert on nuclear reaction theory involving exotic (halo) nuclei. His publications on the subject have now amassed over 1000 citations. He was appointed permanent lecturer when his fellowship ended. In 2005 he was awarded a personal chair in physics.

Professor Al-Khalili is an active science communicator, writer and broadcaster and was the first to be awarded the Surrey chair in the Public Engagement in Science. He was also an EPSRC Senior Media Fellow between 2006 and 2011. He has written many books, which have been translated into over twenty languages and is currently writing a book on quantum biology. He presented the BAFTA nominated Chemistry: A Volatile History, as well as many other TV science documentaries. For the past three years he has presented BBC Radio 4’s The Life Scientific.

He is currently president of the British Humanist Association; previous public roles include vice president and trustee of the British Science Association. He has an OBE, the Royal Society Michael Faraday medal, the Institute of Physics Kelvin Medal, and two honorary degrees.