At its 147th meeting, held at the Agency's headquarters in Paris on 19 and 20 October, the ESA Council unanimously elected its new Director of Science for the next four years, Prof. David Southwood (UK), who takes over from Prof. Roger-Maurice Bonnet (F) on 1 May next year.
Prof. Southwood, born on 30 June 1945, holds a BA in Mathematics and a Ph.D in Physics from Imperial College, London. He has spent most of his career at Imperial College, apart from two periods at UCLA (University of California, Los Angeles), as Postdoctoral Fellow and later as Visiting Professor. In 1997 he joined ESA as Earth Observation Future Programme Strategy Manager. He is currently Imperial College Pro Rector responsible for external academic affairs.
Prof. Southwood has received five awards/honours and held many chairmanships, including those of the Science Programme Committee and Space Science Advisory Committee at ESA.
His role as Principal Investigator for the Cassini Saturn Orbiter Magnetometer is his most recent project. He has been active over the years, both in Europe and in the United States, in public outreach on space science. He has around 200 publications and 100 invited papers to his name.
"David Southwood ranks among the most prominent space science experts in Europe", said ESA's Director General, Antonio Rodotà, welcoming Prof. Southwood's appointment, "and I am sure that he, like his predecessor, Prof. Bonnet, will do a first-rate job for the excellent scientific community in our member states".
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