Find out who sits on the Defence Scientific Advisory Council (DSAC).

The Defence Scientific Advisory Council closed in October 2016.

Chairman DSAC

Professor David Delpy, CBE, FRS, FREng, FMedSci

David Delpy, previously CEO of the Engineering and Physical Sciences Research Council (EPSRC) has over 30 years experience in both the academic and applied biomedical physics domains. He has considerable experience of chairing high level scientific committees, experience he will be able to bring to bear in this new role.

He joined EPSRC on 1 September 2007 from University College London, where he was Vice-Provost for Research.

His career at UCL started in 1972 working on an MRC funded project to develop an invasive blood pressure sensor. In 1976 as a Senior Physicist at University College Hospital he had a major responsibility for the physiological monitoring equipment in the Neonatal Intensive Care Unit. He became a Principal Physicist in 1982, Senior Lecturer in 1986 and in 1991 Hamamatsu Professor of Medical Photonics. He is a Fellow of the Royal Society, Royal Academy of Engineering and Academy of Medical Sciences.

His research interests are in the field of physiological monitoring, especially in the development of techniques for non-invasive monitoring of tissue oxygenation and metabolism.

Vice-Chairman DSAC

Professor Peter Johnson, Ph.D. FBCS

Peter Johnson is Professor of Computing Science at University of Bath. He previously held the posts of Professor of Human Computer Interaction and Head of Department of Computer Science at Queen Mary University of London and Head of Department of Computer Science at University of Bath. He has led EPSRC, EU and Industry research grants continuously from 1986 to the present day.

His research addresses theory, engineering and design of Human Computer Systems in complex application areas, particularly emergency response, defence, energy, environment and manufacturing. Underpinning this work he has brought together socio-psychological and computing to theory and methods to establish principles of collaborative, collective and autonomous systems.

Past work includes:

  • task and model based design work on participatory design
  • design representations
  • work on HCI and cockpit interaction

His current work on collaboration has addressed large and small group collaborations involving artistic collaborations and human-autonomous agent collaborations. His work on collectives has developed principles for individual and community carbon energy consumption reduction, for human-agent collective decision making in human autonomous systems, and for data, collection and sharing and decision making in diverse collectives

Other independent council members

Mr John Ames, FIET

John spent a long career in telecommunications Research and Development working in the areas of analogue engineering, digital transmission and switching, RF and network aspects of mobile communications, optical transmission, underwater cables and repeaters, performance engineering and systems integration.

He occupied senior roles in the performance engineering and then the submarine systems area and was ultimately leading 1300 technologists in BT’s in-house systems integration business with a budget of over £100M. Following this experience he was invited to develop from scratch a technical consulting organisation and during this time he also developed a personal interest in the future of technology and its impact on business and everyday life, becoming an accomplished speaker in this area.

John left BT to work independently and became manager of the Communications Research Network. He is now the fixed network infrastructure expert for the ICT Knowledge Transfer Network as well as a member of DSAC Council and consultant in the defence industry.

Dr Louise Bennett FBCS

Dr Louise Bennett started her career as a scientist modelling weather patterns and forecasting locust plagues in Africa. She then moved into operations research and real time computing for aircraft systems in the Ministry of Defence. Over the last 25 years she has been an IT & R&D director (Thorn EMI, Logica, AEA Technology, Vivas). She currently does a portfolio of jobs. She is a Trustee of the Marine Society and Sea Cadets.

She chairs the BCS Security Community of Expertise and Identity Assurance Working Group. She also sits on: the CO Privacy and Consumer Advisory Group for the identity assurance programme, the ICO Technology Reference Panel, and is an expert advisor for the European Commission R&D programme. Her consulting focuses on: strategic and corporate governance, the exploitation and ethical use of new technology and risk management. Her latest work includes identity assurance and payments on the Internet, developing resilient organisations, from environmental, security and privacy perspectives (including information assurance and fraud prevention).

Prof Paul Cannon OBE, FREng

Paul is Professor of Radio Science and Systems at the University of Birmingham. Until 2013 Prof Paul Cannon was concurrently the part-time Director of the Poynting Institute at the University of Birmingham and a Senior Fellow at QinetiQ. Prior to this Paul served as Chief Scientist and Technical Director of the Communications Division of QinetiQ and as the University Partnerships Director of QinetiQ. Paul is currently the Editor-in-Chief of the US journal “Radio Science” and President of the International Union of Radio Science (URSI).

He has worked at the intersection of research and industry for the last 20 years and in his role as the first Director of the Poynting Institute at the University of Birmingham he led a partnership between industry and academia dealing with Autonomy and Space Engineering. Paul is a leading figure in radio science and systems, being interested in a wide range of radio propagation and radio environment problems and how they impact communications, radar and navigation systems. He has made numerous personal and team leadership contributions to mitigating the impact of the environment on radio systems.

He has served on the UK Cabinet Office, Space Weather Project Board, has been an expert witness to the House of Commons Science and Technology Select Committee and has supported the Prime Minister’s Committee on Science and Technology.

Mr William Forrest, CEng, FIET, FRIN

William Forrest is Managing Director of William Forrest Consulting Ltd, a freelance business advisor / consultant providing support to technology based companies, institutions and government.

He is an experienced Business Development Director with a sound engineering, project management, marketing, and strategy background and has an outstanding track record in military and civil programs for domestic and international markets. William has extensive bid and project expertise with Thales and Raytheon ranging from collaborative Research and Technology and its commercialization, product development, through to multi £Bn complex systems bids and projects.

Professor Julian D C Jones OBE, FRSE, FInstP, FOSA

Professor Jones studied at the University of Wales, Aberystwyth before becoming a lecturer at the University of Kent at Canterbury. Since 1988, he has been at Heriot-Watt University, Edinburgh, establishing a research group in optical fibre sensors, optical instrumentation and laser-material interactions. In 2007, he became Deputy Principal for Strategy and Resources, in 2010 Vice-Principal, and additionally in 2013, Deputy Vice-Chancellor.

His interests have spanned the underlying physics and the engineering applications of fibre optics, of which a representative selection includes: monitoring techniques for laser welding; instrumentation for jet engine design experiments; pressure sensors used in experiments for mitigation of terrorist explosions; fluorescence techniques for detection of contamination in surgical instruments; quantitative measurements of wing shape in natural insect flight; and many more.

He is a director of OptoSci Ltd and in 2010 he was appointed to the Scottish Science Advisory Council. He is also Treasurer of the Institute of Physics, a member of its Council and has chaired the Optics and Photonics Division, the Optical Group, the Institute in Scotland and the Education Committee in Scotland.

Mrs Judith Rawle, FORS

Judith Rawle is Head of Operational Research at CORDA, a consulting business wholly owned by BAE Systems, that uses modelling and analysis techniques to support decision making. Her expertise is in Operational Analysis and business modelling within the defence domain to support policy and strategy development, current operations, and the development of military capability.

Professor Sarah Spurgeon FREng, FIET, FIMA, FInstMC

Professor Sarah Spurgeon is Head of the School of Engineering and Digital Arts at the University of Kent.

Her research interests are in mathematical modelling, systems analysis, robust control and estimation. She was awarded an IEEE Millenium Medal in 2000 and the Honeywell International Medal in 2010 for ‘distinguished contribution as a control and measurement technologist to developing the theory of control’.

She is actively involved in a range of national and international professional bodies and currently chairs the Ingenious Panel for the Royal Academy of Engineering and has most recently been nominated as a member of Council for the International Federation of Automatic Control (IFAC) for the period 2014 to 17.

Dr Martyn Thomas, CBE, FREng, FIET

Dr Martyn Thomas is an independent consultant software engineer with particular expertise in safety-related and other critical computer systems.