This site contains links to my current activities, reflections on some of the things that interest me, and a small amount of professional information that may be hard to find online elsewhere (in particular, my PhD thesis).
The idea that science can, and should, be run according to fixed and universal rules, is both unrealistic and pernicious. It is unrealistic, for it takes too simple a view of the talents of man and of the circumstances which encourage, or cause, their development. And it is pernicious, for the attempt to enforce the rules is bound to increase our professional qualifications at the expense of our humanity. ... All methodologies have their limitations and the only 'rule' that survives is 'anything goes'.
Paul Feyerabend, Against Method (Concluding chapter).
directed international university programmes and educational projects; written best-selling physics and chemistry textbooks; advised multinational companies about innovative approaches to CSR (corporate and social responsibility); provided advice to commercial and non-commercial organisations about learning; spoken at international conferences, on TV and on radio about multiple topics, including education, science and technology, often in the context of Russia and the former Soviet Union; and advised on the implementation of a space weather project in Armenia.
For nearly thirty years my academic interests have concerned the use of online social communities in developing knowledge and expertise among young people. In 1993 I established ScI-Journal, the first online space in the world designed to enable and encourage school science students to collaborate and discuss reports of school science practical work with one another, teachers and professional scientists. The site quickly grew to attract contributions from thousands of young people from around the world, especially the US, Canada, Australia and Russia as well as the UK. Its innovative nature resulted in international recognition in the first ever Cable & Wireless Childnet International Awards in 1998.
Drawing on multiple theories of learning together with theories of expertise and status from the sociological literature and methodological approaches from the world of CSCW/CSCL, my interdisciplinary study of ScI-Journal was the subject of numerous papers, book chapters, conference presentations and seminars for international audiences, and formed the basis of my PhD.
Having spent time in the last few years advising many private clients from around the world on education and career paths, I now focus my attention on using machine learning and AI to create understanding of young people's life mission and what drives them.