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Julia Knights

Dr Julia Knights is Deputy Director of the Science Museum with oversight of exhibitions, curatorial, visitor experience & operations. Julia joined the Museum from the Senior Civil Service as Deputy Director Energy and Climate Science at the Department for Business, Energy & Industrial Strategy. Prior to this, Julia spent 12 years as a diplomat in the Foreign & Commonwealth Office heading up the science teams in East China, Russia, Brazil, Argentina & Chile. During this time, Julia managed large science programmes including a £150 million fund for UK-Brazil research in climate, biodiversity, sustainable agriculture and tropical medicine. Julia also designed and led science diplomacy campaigns including the UK-Brazil Year of Science 2018-2019; UK-Brazil climate lecture series at Rio 2016 Olympics and the UK-Russia Year of Space 2011. Julia holds a BSc Hons in soil science, an MSc in crop protection and a PhD in soil & climate biogeochemistry. She is a Fellow of the Royal Society of Biology & a Policy Fellow of the Cambridge University Centre for Science & Policy.

In the first of the Science Museum Group’s global Climate Talks series, Climate Change: Why Should We Care? – broadcaster and mathematician Dr Hannah Fry was joined by the legendary conservationist Dr Jane Goodall, Kenyan climate activist Wanjũhĩ Njoroge, climate advocate Kira Peter-Hansen MEP and scientist Dr Tamsin Edwards to explore how climate change will impact the future of our planet and why we need to act now to deal with the challenges posed by it.

Last week, the Science Museum Group announced its reopening plans, following months of closure due to the coronavirus pandemic. Dr Julia Knights, Chair of the Group’s Sustainability Advisory Board and Deputy Director of the Science Museum, outlines the steps the Group is taking to put sustainability at the heart of re-opening its five museums to the public.

This morning, Prime Minister Boris Johnson launched the UK Year of Climate Action at the Science Museum. The museum’s Deputy Director Dr Julia Knights explains why the Science Museum Group will be a prominent scientific voice in preparations for the most important climate meeting on the planet.