Prof Geoffrey Oldham
Honorary Professor, Science Policy Research Unit (SPRU) at University of Sussex, UK; member, Gender Advisory Board, UN Commission on Science and Technology for Development (UNCSTD); Steering Committee, GenderINSITE.
Prof Oldham is an Honorary Professor with SPRU at the University of Sussex, UK. Prof Oldham trained as a geophysicist and spent several years in the exploration research laboratories of Standard Oil Company of California. He left the oil company to accept a Fellowship which enabled him to study the Chinese language and to initiate a review of science and technology policy in several Asian countries. After a year with the Scientific Directorate of OECD he helped start the Science Policy Research Unit at the University of Sussex and was its Director from 1980 to 1992. He was also a member of the team which designed and drafted the Act of the Canadian Parliament which established the International Development Research Centre. He directed the Centre's Science and Technology Policy Programme for ten years and served as Science Adviser to the President of IDRC from 1992 to 1996.
Prof Oldham has served on numerous science and technology policy advisory bodies. He was a member of the Hong Kong Committee for Scientific Co-ordination and represented Hong Kong at the 1963 UN conference on Science and Technology for Development. He was chairman of the UN Advisory Committee on Science and Technology for Development and the UK delegate to the UN Commission on Science and Technology for Development. He chaired the Commission's working groups on Gender and Science and Technology, and on Information Technologies and Development. He has continued to be a member of the Commission's Gender Advisory Board. He also served on the WHO's Advisory Committee on Health Research. He participated in the IDRC science and technology reviews of South Africa, China, and Vietnam. He was also a member of the international panel appointed to review ICSU in 1996. Although Prof Oldham has worked in many developing countries his main interest has been with science and technology development in China. He was an adviser to that country's Minister of Science and Technology from 1997 to 2000.