Professor Ian Crawford elected Vice President of the Royal Astronomical Society

Professor Ian Crawford, from the Department of Earth and Planetary Sciences at Birkbeck, has been elected Vice President of the Royal Astronomical Society (RAS).

The RAS was founded in 1820 to encourage and promote the study of astronomy, solar-system science, geophysics and other related branches of science.

In response to his election, Crawford said:

“I have served as an RAS Secretary for the last ten years, and I now wish to build on this experience to help the Society contribute to meeting a number of future scientific and societal challenges. These include the need to ensure that public policy remains grounded in rational, evidence- based, decision making; doing what we can to mitigate the negative effects of Brexit, and other government policies; strengthening diversity and inter-disciplinarity in the scientific community; and ensuring that the wider public is aware of, and excited by, discoveries in planetary science, astronomy, and geophysics.

I am passionately committed to all of these goals and will work towards them as an RAS Vice-President.”

Professor David Latchman, CBE, Master of Birkbeck, said:

“Ian has long been a leading figure in planetary sciences and astrobiology, and has made many major contributions to his field. In addition to his impressive body of research, he is highly committed to raising the public understanding of science. I am certain Ian will excel in advancing the purpose of the RAS as its Vice President, and all of us at Birkbeck would like to congratulate him on this new appointment.”

Crawford’s research at Birkbeck is primarily focused on lunar science and exploration, and he also has long-standing interests in astrobiology and space exploration.

In addition to his new position at the RAS, Crawford also holds the position of Chair Sub-Commission B3 (The Moon) on the Committee for Space Research (COSPAR) and is an advisor to the European Space Agency.

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