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Senior Adviser, Earth Observation, European Space Agency, and Fellow, UCL

Professor Stephen Briggs is a Visiting Professor in the Department of Meteorology, University of Reading and a Fellow of University College London. He is the Senior Adviser in the Directorate of Earth Observation (EO) Programmes, ESA, with responsibility for future EO strategy and, particularly, relations to external bodies. He is Chairman of the Global Climate Observing System (GCOS) Steering Committee and Chair of the Strategic Implementation Team of the Committee on Earth Observation Satellites (CEOS). He is also ad hominem Senior Adviser to the Chinese National Remote Sensing Programme. He also serves on the Advisory Board of the Global Terrestrial Network – Glaciers.

Prior to his current role he was Head of the EO Programmes and Coordination Office of ESA, and Head of the Department of Earth Observation Science, Applications & Future Technologies where he was responsible for the exploitation of ESA EO missions, for the future EO technologies programme and for studies relating to future missions. He was also the interface between ESA’s EO missions and its user communities.

Stephen has a 1st Class Honours BSc and PhD degrees in Astrophysics from University College London. There he worked in satellite-based spectrometry of faint galaxies before turning to satellite based Earth observation. He founded the first research group in the UK Natural Environment Research Council working in applications of satellite EO, eventually becoming Director of EO in NERC and in the British National Space Centre, prior to his joining ESA.


  • –present
    Senior Adviser, Earth Observation, European Space Agency, and Fellow, UCL