Associate Professor in Ocean Exploration & Public Engagement, University of Southampton

"Bathynaut" who went on the first minisub dive to the world's deepest hydrothermal vents (hot springs 5 km / 3.1 miles down on the ocean floor), & took part in the first minisub dives to 1 km (0.62 miles) deep in the Antarctic.

As a marine biologist, my research explores life in the deep ocean that covers most of our world, where I have led expeditions discovering new species. By studying marine life in "island-like" habitats on the ocean floor - such as hydrothermal vents, brine pools, and whalefalls - my work examines interactions between ecology ("who does what"), biogeography ("who lives where"), and evolution ("who is related to whom") in the deep ocean.

I'm an award-winning communicator (e.g. contributor to BBC Blue Planet II), writer (e.g. author of Ask An Ocean Explorer, published Feb 2019; former Reporter and Assistant News Editor of New Scientist magazine), and co-founder of a company (SciConnect Ltd) that provides training for scientists to share their work with wider audiences.

I have contributed to consultations by policymakers to guide the protection of deep-sea habitats, and produced a 4* "Impact Case Study" in the UK's REF2014 assessment. I was also Co-Chair of InterRidge, the international organisation coordinating research at mid-ocean ridges, from 2010-2012.

For more info, please see www.joncopley.com

Experience

  • 2006–present
    Co-founder & Director, SciConnect Ltd
  • 2013–present
    Associate Professor in Ocean Exploration & Public Engagement, University of Southampton
  • 2007–2013
    Lecturer in Marine Ecology, University of Southampton
  • 2005–2007
    Senior Teaching Fellow in Marine Ecology, University of Southampton
  • 2000–2005
    Teaching Fellow in Marine Ecology, University of Southampton
  • 2000–2004
    Science Coordinator (part-time), NERC Autosub Under Ice programme
  • 1998–1999
    Reporter & Assistant News Editor, New Scientist magazine

Education

  • 1998 
    University of Southampton, PhD in Oceanography
  • 1994 
    University of Southampton, MSc in Oceanography
  • 1992 
    University of Sheffield, BSc(Hons) in Zoology

Grants and Contracts

  • 2017
    The colonisation of hydrothermal vents by complex life: a natural experiment in macroevolution
    Role:
    Co-Investigator
    Funding Source:
    Natural Environment Research Council
  • 2011
    Biogeography and ecology of the first known deep-sea vent site on the ultraslow-spreading SW Indian Ridge
    Role:
    Principal Investigator
    Funding Source:
    Natural Environment Research Council
  • 2011
    Deep-sea vents between the Azores and Iceland: missing piece in a global puzzle of marine life
    Role:
    Lead Investigator
    Funding Source:
    National Geographic
  • 2009
    Hydrothermal activity and deep-ocean biology of the Mid-Cayman Rise
    Role:
    Principal Investigator
    Funding Source:
    Natural Environment Research Council
  • 2008
    Chemosynthetic Ecosystems of the Southern Ocean
    Role:
    Co-Investigator
    Funding Source:
    Natural Environment Research Council

Professional Memberships

  • Scientific Associate of the Natural History Museum, London (since 2014)
  • National Geographic Explorer (recipient of Expeditions Fund Grant), 2011-2012
  • Co-Chair of InterRidge initiative for international cooperation in mid-ocean ridge research, 2010-2012

Research Areas

  • Ecology (0602)
  • Zoology (0608)
  • Oceanography (0405)
  • Evolutionary Biology (0603)