John Beddington

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Sir John Beddington
John Beddington (cropped).jpg
John Rex Beddington

(1945-10-13) 13 October 1945 (age 73)[1]
Residence UK
Nationality British
Alma mater London School of Economics (undergraduate)
University of Edinburgh (postgraduate)
Known for Sustainable management of renewable resources[citation needed]
Government Chief Scientific Adviser (2008–2013)
Spouse(s) Sarah West (divorced 1972)
Sally Baldwin (divorced 1979)
Caroline Hiller
Awards Fellow of the Royal Society (2001)
Knight Bachelor (2010)
Order of St Michael and St George (2004)
Honorary FREng[2] (2012)[1]
Scientific career
Fields Population biology
Institutions Oxford Martin School
Imperial College London
University of York
University of Edinburgh
Thesis The exploitation of red deer (Cervus elaphus L.) in Scotland.

Sir John Rex Beddington, HonFREng,[2] CMG, FRS, FRSE (born 13 October 1945)[1] is Senior Adviser at the Oxford Martin School, and was previously Professor of Applied Population Biology at Imperial College London, and the UK Government Chief Scientific Adviser from 2008 until 2013.[3][4][5]


Beddington was educated at Monmouth School in south-east Wales, close to the English border.[6] He then attended the London School of Economics, gaining a Bachelor of Science degree in Economics, and later a Master of Science degree. In 1973 he was awarded a Doctor of Philosophy degree from the University of Edinburgh.[7]

Research and career

Beddington's research is in population biology and the sustainable management of non-renewable and renewable resources.[8][9][10][11][12][13][14][15][16][17] From 1968 to 1971 Beddington was a research assistant at the University of Edinburgh. From 1971 to 1984 he was a lecturer in Population Biology at the University of York.[1]

Oxford Martin School

Beddington joined the Oxford Martin School in May 2013. He serves as the senior advisor to Professor Ian Goldin, the School's Director. The Oxford Martin School is made up of a community of more than 200 researchers, working to address the most pressing global challenges and opportunities of the 21st century.

Imperial College London

Beddington joined Imperial in 1984, was promoted to Reader in 1987[18] and was appointed Professor of Applied Population Biology there in 1991.

Beddington has been a specialist in the economics and biology of sustainable management of renewable resources, and has previously advised UK ministers on scientific and environmental issues. He has chaired the Department for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs' science advisory panel and the Defence Scientific Advisory Committee, and is a member of the Natural Environmental Research Council.[19] He has also advised the European Commission and the United Nations Food and Agriculture Organisation.

Chief Scientific Adviser

On 1 October 2007, it was announced by the Prime Minister Gordon Brown that Beddington would succeed Professor Sir David King as the Chief Scientific Adviser to the UK Government with effect from 1 January 2008.[20] His annual remuneration for this role was £165,000.[21] Beddington was closely involved in helping the British government formulate its response to the Fukushima Daiichi nuclear disaster,[22] the eruptions of Icelandic volcanoes and ash dieback disease in the UK.[5][23] In April 2013 Beddington was succeeded by Mark Walport.[24][25]

Awards and honours

Professor Beddington was awarded the Heidelberg Award for Environmental Excellence in June 1997, was elected a Fellow of the Royal Society in 2001[26] and was appointed Companion of the Order of St Michael and St George (CMG) by Queen Elizabeth II in 2004, in recognition of his services to fisheries science and management.[27] He was also appointed a Honorary Fellow[2] of the Royal Academy of Engineering[2] in 2012 and was elected a Fellow of the Royal Society of Edinburgh[28] in 2011.

In July 2014, he was recognised by the Government of Japan for his contributions to strengthening the co-operation between Japan and the UK in the areas of science and technology.[29]

Personal life

Beddington was knighted in the 2010 Birthday Honours.[30] He married Sarah West in 1968. They divorced in 1972 and have one son. In 1973 he married Prof Sally Baldwin. They divorced in 1979 and have one daughter. In 1990 he married Caroline Hiller.[1]


  1. ^ a b c d e "BEDDINGTON, Sir John (Rex)" (Who's Who 2013, A & C Black, an imprint of Bloomsbury Publishing plc, 2013; online edn, Oxford University Press).
  2. ^ a b c d "List of Fellows – Royal Academy of Engineering". Retrieved 6 December 2016.
  3. ^ McGourty, Christine (19 March 2009). "Global crisis 'to strike by 2030' chief scientist John Beddington has warned". BBC News.
  4. ^ "Prof Sir John Beddington warns of floods, droughts and storms – BBC News". BBC. Retrieved 6 December 2016.
  5. ^ a b "John Beddington: The science and art of effective advice |". The Guardian. London. 4 April 2013.
  6. ^ "Monmouth School Alumni". Archived from the original on 12 April 2013.
  7. ^ Beddington, John Rex (1973). The Exploitation of Red Deer (Cervus Elaphus L.) in Scotland (PhD thesis). University of Edinburgh.
  8. ^ Beddington, J. R.; Asaduzzaman, M.; Clark, M. E.; Fernández Bremauntz, A.; Guillou, M. D.; Howlett, D. J. B.; Jahn, M. M.; Lin, E.; Mamo, T.; Negra, C.; Nobre, C. A.; Scholes, R. J.; Van Bo, N.; Wakhungu, J. (2012). "What Next for Agriculture After Durban?". Science. 335 (6066): 289–290. doi:10.1126/science.1217941. PMID 22267797.
  9. ^ Black, R.; Bennett, S. R. G.; Thomas, S. M.; Beddington, J. R. (2011). "Climate change: Migration as adaptation". Nature. 478 (7370): 447–449. doi:10.1038/478477a. PMID 22012304.
  10. ^ Godfray, H. C. J.; Pretty, J.; Thomas, S. M.; Warham, E. J.; Beddington, J. R. (2011). "Linking Policy on Climate and Food". Science. 331 (6020): 1013–1014. doi:10.1126/science.1202899. PMID 21273449.
  11. ^ Godfray, H. C. J.; Beddington, J. R.; Crute, I. R.; Haddad, L.; Lawrence, D.; Muir, J. F.; Pretty, J.; Robinson, S.; Thomas, S. M.; Toulmin, C. (2010). "Food Security: The Challenge of Feeding 9 Billion People". Science. 327 (5967): 812–818. doi:10.1126/science.1185383. PMID 20110467.
  12. ^ Beddington, J. R.; Agnew, D. J.; Clark, C. W. (2007). "Current Problems in the Management of Marine Fisheries". Science. 316 (5832): 1713–1716. doi:10.1126/science.1137362. PMID 17588923.
  13. ^ Hsieh, C. H.; Reiss, C. S.; Hunter, J. R.; Beddington, J. R.; May, R. M.; Sugihara, G. (2006). "Fishing elevates variability in the abundance of exploited species". Nature. 443 (7113): 859–862. doi:10.1038/nature05232. PMID 17051218.
  14. ^ Rosenberg, A. A.; Fogarty, M. J.; Sissenwine, M. P.; Beddington, J. R.; Shepherd, J. G. (1993). "Achieving Sustainable Use of Renewable Resources". Science. 262 (5135): 828–829. doi:10.1126/science.262.5135.828. PMID 17757341.
  15. ^ May, R. M.; Beddington, J. R.; Clark, C. W.; Holt, S. J.; Laws, R. M. (1979). "Management of Multispecies Fisheries". Science. 205 (4403): 267–277. doi:10.1126/science.205.4403.267. PMID 17747032.
  16. ^ Beddington, J. R.; Free, C. A.; Lawton, J. H. (1978). "Characteristics of successful natural enemies in models of biological control of insect pests". Nature. 273 (5663): 513–519. doi:10.1038/273513a0. PMID 661961.
  17. ^ Beddington, J. R.; May, R. M. (1977). "Harvesting Natural Populations in a Randomly Fluctuating Environment". Science. 197 (4302): 463–465. doi:10.1126/science.197.4302.463. PMID 17783245.
  18. ^ "Home – Professor Sir John Beddington". Imperial College London. Retrieved 6 December 2016.
  19. ^ "Archived copy". Archived from the original on 17 May 2011. Retrieved 3 September 2007.CS1 maint: Archived copy as title (link)
  20. ^ "New Government Chief Scientific Adviser announced". HM Government. 1 October 2007. Archived from the original on 5 October 2007. Retrieved 10 January 2012.
  21. ^ "Top civil servant salary list published". Directgov. 1 June 2010. Archived from the original on 11 June 2011. Retrieved 14 June 2010.
  22. ^ Grimes, Robin (16 June 2014). "The UK Response to Fukushima and Anglo-Japanese Relations". Science & Diplomacy. 3 (2).
  23. ^ "In praise of … John Beddington | The Guardian, Editorial Tuesday 26 March 2013". London. 26 March 2013.
  24. ^ Callaway, E. (2012). "Britain names next chief science adviser: Immunologist Mark Walport, head of one of the world's largest biomedical charities, will take on role in 2013". Nature. 487 (7405): 20. doi:10.1038/487020a.
  25. ^ Anon (2012). "Good advice: The UK government's latest appointment offers hope for British science". Nature. 487 (7405): 5. doi:10.1038/487005b.
  26. ^ "Royal Society Fellows 1660-date". London: The Royal Society. Retrieved 20 July 2010.
  27. ^ May, R. M.; Beddington, J. R.; Clark, C. W.; Holt, S. J.; Laws, R. M. (1979). "Management of Multispecies Fisheries". Science. 205 (4403): 267–277. doi:10.1126/science.205.4403.267. PMID 17747032.
  28. ^ "Sir John Rex Beddington KB CMG HonFREng FRS FRSE - The Royal Society of Edinburgh". The Royal Society of Edinburgh. Retrieved 28 June 2018.
  29. ^ "Japanese honour for Sir John Beddington | Oxford Martin School". University of Oxford. Retrieved 6 December 2016.
  30. ^ "No. 59446". The London Gazette (Supplement). 12 June 2010. p. 1.
Preceded by
David King
Government Chief Scientific Adviser
Succeeded by
Mark Walport
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