Professor John Shepherd CBE FRS MA PhD FIMA CMath is Emeritus Professor of Earth System Science in the Ocean & Earth Science department of the University of Southampton, based at the National Oceanography Centre, Southampton. He is a physicist by training, but has worked on a wide range of environmental issues, including the transport of sulphur dioxide in the atmospheric boundary layer, the dispersion of tracers in the deep ocean, the assessment & control of radioactive waste disposal in the sea, the assessment and management of marine fish stocks, and most recently on Earth System Modelling and climate change. His current research interests are in climate change and the natural variability of the climate system on long time-scales, and in the development and application of intermediate complexity models of the Earth climate system, especially for the interpretation of the palaeo-climate record.
From 1989–1994 he was Deputy Director of the MAFF Fisheries Laboratory at Lowestoft, and the principal scientific adviser to the UK government on marine fisheries management. He has been Professor of Marine Science at the University of Southampton since 1994, and from 1994–1999 he was the first Director of what is now the National Oceanography Centre. From 2001 to 2010 Professor Shepherd was also a Deputy Director of the Tyndall Centre for Climate Change Research. He is a Fellow of the Institute of Mathematics and its Applications, and was elected a Fellow of the Royal Society in 1999.
He has extensive experience of international scientific assessments and advice in controversial areas such as fisheries management and radioactive waste disposal, as well as climate change, and has taken a particular interest in the interaction between science, economics, and public policy. He has chaired a number of independent scientific & technical reviews of major offshore oil & gas decommissioning projects, and is a member of the Research Board of the Gulf of Mexico Research Initiative.
Recent Appointments and activities
2004-2005 Member, Royal Society Study on Ocean Acidification
2006-2007 Member of Council, Royal Society
2008-2011 Non-executive member of Management Board, British Antarctic Survey
2011 Member, “Offshore oil and gas in the UK: independent review of the regulatory regime” (The Maitland Review: for DECC/HSE/MCA)
2009-2012 Member, Sectional Committee 5, Royal Society
2008-2015 Member, CEFAS Science Advisory Committee
2009–2014 Chair, DECC Scientific Advisory Group
2007-present Chair, Independent Review Group, Shell Brent Decommissioning Project
2008-2009 Chair, Royal Society Study on Geoengineering the Climate
2010-present Member, Research Board, Gulf of Mexico Research Initiative
2013-present Member, Science Policy Advisory Group, Royal Society