Prof. James Hough

Associate Director of the IGR


Jim Hough is a graduate of the University of Glasgow where he became Professor of Experimental Physics in 1986 and is currently the emeritus holder of the Kelvin Chair of Natural Philosophy. JH has been Director of the University's Institute for Gravitational Research from 2000 to 2009 and is now Associate Director. Currently he is a Research Professor in Natural Philosophy at the University of Glasgow and a Visiting Professor in Physics at the University of Strathclyde.

Research interests are centred on Gravitational Wave Detection on ground (GEO 600 in Germany and Advanced LIGO in the USA and in space (LISA). A JILA Fellow in 1983 he was, along with Karsten Danzmann, winner of a Max-Planck research prize in 1991, was elected to the Royal Society of Edinburgh in 1991 and to the Royal Society of London in 2003, was awarded the Duddell Prize of the Institute of Physics in 2004 and the Gunning Victoria Prize lectureship of the Royal Society of Edinburgh in 2008. He was elected to Fellowship of the Institute of Physics in 1993 and of the American Physical Society in 2001, and was awarded Fellowship of the International Society for General Relativity and Gravitation in 2010, and Fellowship of the Royal Society of Arts in 2012.

Currently JH is a member of the Scottish Science Advisory Council, the Advisory Committee to the Glasgow Science Centre, the Council of the Institute of Physics in the UK, the Physical and Engineering Science Committee of the European Science Foundation, and the Executive Committee and Council of the European Physical Society. Further he chairs the Education Committee for the Institute of Physics in Scotland and is a member of the IoP (UK) Education Committee. These positions enable him to help steer science and education policy in Scotland, the UK and Europe, the latter being particularly important as Horizon 2020 commences.

For his wide-ranging research and advisory work he was awarded an OBE in the 2013 Queen's Birthday Honours.

With more than 220 refereed journal publications to his name he combines continuing research into the quest for gravitational waves with being Chief Executive Officer of the Scottish Universities Physics Alliance (SUPA) and being the initiator and director of the first International Max Planck Partnership worldwide. This partnership, between five Scottish Universities and five Max Planck Institutes in Germany, is centred on Observation and Measurement at the Quantum Limit and is planned to boost the academic and innovative impact of Scottish Physics in the area of quantum measurement and information.

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