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Fellows Directory

Peter Williams

Peter Williams

Sir Peter Williams CBE FREng FRS


Elected: 1999


Peter Williams is a physicist and industry leader with an academic background in the study of semiconductor physics. As Director of Research and subsequently Chief Executive and Chairman of Oxford Instruments, he has advocated collaboration between businesses and universities and helped to promote science-based industry in the United Kingdom.

Peter has also been a consistent supporter of campaigns aimed at increasing the number of UK graduates studying mathematics at university, and has served as joint patron of WISE (Women into Science and Engineering). In 2008, he conducted the Williams Review of childhood numeracy and in 2010 was asked by the UN Secretary General to assist with a review of the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC).

A former Chairman of the National Physical Laboratory and past Treasurer and Vice-President of the Royal Society, Peter received a CBE in 1992 and was knighted in 1998 for services to science and technology.

Interest and expertise

Subject groups

  • Other
    • Public understanding of science, Science policy
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