Jack Kirby is Group Head of Collections Services for the Science Museum Group. He has worked with diverse communities in London and Birmingham and curated collections of national significance. Jack has responsibility for caring for, digitising and managing the Science Museum Group's internationally outstanding collection. Based in Manchester, UK, he leads teams across five museums and two collections facilities, from County Durham to Wiltshire.
Dr David Pritchard – gas explosion expert (#112)
David Pritchard worked for the UK's Health and Safety Laboratories where he undertook investigations into gas explosion incidents and how to prevent them.
Brian Mackenwells – public engagement (#110)
Brian Mackenwells spent many years working in science communication, delivering and developing science shows and workshops for school and family audiences, as well as for adults. He now supports researchers to engage the public with their work. He also writes audio drama and theatre, and can also be found on stage doing standup about pencils. He has only made two children cry in the course of his career to date.
Remona Aly – journalist and broadcaster (#109)
Remona Aly is a journalist and broadcaster. She writes for The Guardian and other media outlets on faith, lifestyle and identity. She is a resident Pause for Thought contributor at BBC Radio 2 on the Zoe Ball Breakfast Show and a presenter on BBC Radio 4’s Something Understood. Remona is Director of Communications for Exploring Islam Foundation which specialises in PR campaigns and creative resources. She is also an editor, presents and produces podcasts, and is on an ongoing quest to write a book (will it ever happen).
Erica McAlister – entomologist (#103)
Erica McAlister is Senior Curator of Diptera and Siphonaptera at The Natural History Museum, London, where she has worked here for 15 years concentrating on lower Brachycera, Culicidae and Mycetophilidae. Recently she published a popular science book ‘The Secret Life of Flies’ which won the 2019 Zoological Society of London’s Clarivate Analytics Award for Communicating Zoology. She is the President of the Amateur Entomological Society and has also been awarded an Honorary Fellowship to the Royal Society of Entomology.
Dr Michael de Podesta – physicist (#102)
Michael de Podesta is 59 years old in 2019. He studied Physics at Sussex University (1978-81) and after almost ‘dropping out’ he went on to finish a PhD there on the arcane properties of metals at cryogenic temperatures. He went on to work as a lecturer in Physics at Birkbeck College and University College before leaving academia in 2000 to work at NPL. His work at NPL is mainly related to temperature measurement, but in 2004 he started Protons for Breakfast, a course on physics for the general public which ran twice a year until 2014. He was awarded an MBE for services to science in 2009.
Kevin Quantum – Magician>Scientist Hybrid (#84)
Twelve years ago, unassuming scientist Kevin paused his Physics PhD to become a magician, being tutored by none other than magic royalty Penn & Teller. Having now spent the first ten years of his adult life completely immersed in Physics and the next ten in magic, Kevin is the most likely the only person on the planet who’s reached the required 10,000 hours needed to make you an ‘expert’ – in both areas. Kevin has since appeared in BBC documentaries, consulted for the National Theatre of Scotland & taught Eddie Izzard magic for a movie role. He was the first magician to perform at the Globe Theatre in London and is Artistic Director of the UK’s largest Magic Festival – The Edinburgh International Magic Festival.
Dr Tom Hiscock – systems biologist (#76)
Tom is a research scientist trying to understand how embryos develop into animals. He started life as a single-celled embryo in the small town of Battle on the south coast (of ‘Battle of Hastings’ fame). Since then, science has taken him on many adventures and to many places, including Boston USA where he trained, and... Continue Reading →
Dr Jackie Bell – space ambassador (#61)
Jackie is a Senior Teaching Fellow at Imperial College, London. After graduating with a PhD in theoretical particle physics for the University of Liverpool she went on to manage a host of national STEM programmes before being named the North West, Wales and Ireland’s ‘STEM Rising Star’ at the 2018 Forward Ladies Regional Awards. In 2017 Jackie took part in the BBC Science production 'Astronauts: Do You Have What It Takes?'. For this she was selected from over 3,000 applicants to take part and to undertake tests similar to those used in the astronaut selection process at major space agencies.
Interview 53. – Dr Heather Williams
Dr Heather Williams is a Principal Medical Physicist for Nuclear Medicine at The Christie Hospital and honorary Lecturer at the University of Manchester, focussing on teaching imaging physics and positron emission tomography (PET) research. Heather is also a Director of ScienceGrrl, STEMNET ambassador, and active member of the IPEM Nuclear Medicine Special Interest Group and IoP Women in Physics Group committees. Heather also likes standing up and talking about science, and encouraging others (particularly women) to do so. When she's not busy with all that, Heather enjoys running, hiking and introducing her sons to the wonders of the universe, often at the same time.