Dr David Drewry was born in Grimsby, Lincolnshire in 1947 and educated at The Havelock School, Grimsby; the University of London, Queen Mary College (BSc. 1st Class); and Emmanuel College, University of Cambridge (PhD). After completing his Doctorate in glaciology/geophysics he continued research in Cambridge, at the Scott Polar Research Institute, holding the post of Director for the period 1984-1987. From 1987 to 1994 he was Director of the British Antarctic Survey, also in Cambridge. Between 1994 and 1997 he was Director of Science and Technology and Deputy Chief Executive at the Natural Environment Research Council, following which he was appointed Director General of The British Council. He took up his post at Hull in November 1999.
Dr Drewry spent his early years studying relations between ice sheets and climate (using airborne and satellite radar technology). He worked for ten years with the US National Science Foundation, participating in, or leading, five joint UK-US expeditions to Antarctica. From 1980 to 1986 he focused on the Arctic, leading four UK-Norwegian expeditions to Svalbard.
Dr Drewry has published three books and numerous research papers in glaciology, geophysics and ice sheet-climate interactions. He was a member of the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (1990). He has also published widely on science policy and environmental issues. He has been Visiting Scientist at the US Geological Survey (Denver)(1982); Visiting Professor in the University of London (1995-97) and Visiting Fellow at Green College, Oxford (1995-96).
Dr Drewry has had significant involvement in international affairs through the European Science Foundation, European Union, and the European Space Agency. He was founder Chairman of the Council of Managers of National Antarctic Programmes (1989-92). He is currently President of the International Arctic Science Committee.
Dr Drewry holds the Polar Medal and the United States Antarctic Service Medal. He is an Honorary Fellow of Queen Mary and Westfield College, University of London and a Patron of the Robert Gordon University, Aberdeen from where he holds one of several Honorary DSc degrees. In 1994 he was awarded the Prix de la Belgica Gold Medal of the Royal Academy of Belgium. Dr Drewry is a former Vice-President of the Royal Geographical Society and was awarded the Society’s Patron’s Gold Medal in 1998. He has been a member of the FCO Panel 2000 and the Creative Industries Task Force
Dr Drewry’s personal interests are classical music and theatre. He is a keen downhill skier and mountain walker. He is married to Gillian Elizabeth.
© Department of Physics. University of York. 2.May.2001