Prof. Penny Holliday appointed NOC’s first Associate Director for National Capability Science

The National Oceanography Centre (NOC) is proud to announce Prof. Penny Holliday has been appointed as their first ever Associate Director for National Capability Science.

National Capability (NC) is funding provided by the Natural Environment Research Council part of UK Research and Innovation to enable the UK research community to stay at the forefront of environmental science globally, to meet national strategic needs, and to inform government and business decision-making on environmental issues.

NOC accesses a range of NC funding which enables marine scientists throughout the UK to undertake world-class research.

Penny will provide strategic oversight of the NC Science activities and act as a bridge across all UK NC programmes, to ensure that our NC Environmental Data Services (BODC), NC Large Research Infrastructures (BOSCORF and NMF) and NC Science are well-aligned. She will also lead on developing impact from our work and ensure our breadth of engagement activities provide advocacy for the best ocean science and technology.

Penny commented, “I'm so excited to take on this new role at the NOC and play my part in enabling the excellent teams at NOC and our partner centres to deliver the NC research programmes. With climate change visibly affecting people and wildlife, the need for clear information to support resilience to current and future risk and to protect the environment is more pressing than ever.”

Dr John Siddorn, NOC Chief Scientist and Director of Data, Science & Technology, commented, “This is a pivotal role for us, so I am very pleased that Penny has agreed to take this on. She has a wealth of experience leading science, and notably the NC Science activities, as well as national and international ocean leadership experience.

“The AD for NC Science is a new role which will join Dr Jon Blower (AD Digital Ocean), Prof. Doug Connelly (AD Science and Technology) and I (Director of Data, Science and Technology) as Executive leaders.”

John has recently been appointed Chief Scientist and Director of Data, Science & Technology (DST) to succeed Prof. Angela Hatton who left the NOC in July.

About Prof. Penny Holliday

Penny is a physical oceanographer, and her research has focused on the circulation and variability of the subpolar North Atlantic, and the role of the ocean in our changing climate. She has participated in 21 seagoing expeditions, several as Chief Scientist.

Penny joined the Institute of Oceanographic Sciences Deacon Laboratory in 1990, initially working as a project manager for a global, multi-national research programme (World Ocean Circulation Experiment, WOCE), and later combining that role with her research. She received her PhD from Liverpool University in 2002, and worked part-time at the NOC from 2003 to 2016, before returning to full-time. Prior to this posting Penny was Head of the Marine Physics and Ocean Climate group at the NOC.

In June 2019 Penny was awarded the title of Honorary Professorial Fellow (Research) by the University of Southampton and was a recipient of the Society of Underwater Technology's Oceanography Award in December 2019.

Penny has also won internal peer-to-peer Awards at the NOC for her Integrity and her continued support of staff Empowerment, two of the six NOC Values.