Lord Martin Rees
The World in 2050 and Beyond
Martin Rees is a cosmologist and space scientist with a long involvement in policy issues. He has been based for much of his career in Cambridge, where he has been Director of the Institute of Astronomy, a Research Professor, and (until recently) Master of Trinity College.
He was President of the Royal Society (the academy of science for the UK and Commonwealth) from 2005-2010. In 2005 he was appointed to the UK’s House of Lords (as Lord Rees of Ludlow). He is a foreign associate of the National Academy of Sciences, the American Philosophical Society, and the American Academy of Arts and Sciences, and is an honorary member of the Russian Academy of Sciences, the Pontifical Academy, and several other foreign academies.
He has been president of the British Association for the Advancement of Science and the Royal Astronomical Society and a trustee of the British Museum, the Science Museum, the Kennedy Memorial Trust, and the Institute for Public Policy Research. He is currently on the Board of the Princeton Institute for Advanced Study and has served on many bodies connected with education, space research, arms control and international collaboration in science.
Ever since his book Our Final Century? was published ten years ago, he has been concerned with the threats stemming from humanity’s ever-heavier ‘footprint’ on the global environment, and with the runaway consequences of ever more powerful technologies. These concerns led him to join with colleagues in setting up a Centre for the Study of Existential Risks (CSER). This is based in Cambridge but has a strong and international advisory board.
"Space and time may have a structure as intricate as the fauna of a rich ecosystem, but on a scale far larger than the horizon of our observations."