Celebrating Professor Tim Birkhead’s outstanding achievements

Professor Tim Birkhead

Professor Tim Birkhead from our Department of Animal and Plant Sciences is rounding off a wonderful year by giving our Inaugural University Librarian’s Lecture. This coincides with an exhibition of his work in Western Bank Library.

Following his fascinating research, Professor Birkhead’s lecture will celebrate “The Wonderful Mr. Willughby”, a 17th Century ornithologist whose work set the standard for the the way birds and natural history more generally should be studied.

Professor Birkhead’s lecture will take place at Western Bank Library on Friday 8 December from 6pm-8pm.

You can also explore Professor Birkhead’s research at “The Wonderful Mr. Willughby’s New Natural History” exhibition, currently showcased in Western Bank Library. Curated in partnership with Professor Emeritus Mark Greengrass, the collection includes rare books and original documents that give a unique insight into how the study of birds has developed.

Private tour exclusively for University staff:

Professor Tim Birkhead would like to invite University staff for a private tour of the exhibition.

Professor Birkhead will talk about the rare books, original documents and the natural history specimens held by the Universities of Sheffield and Nottingham alongside natural history specimens from the Alfred Denny Museum which are on display.

To book onto the tour, click here and enter the password 'staff'. Please note that places are limited!

Professor Birkhead has enjoyed an illustrious career at our University, transforming teaching and research for both his students and colleagues. Here are some of his highlights:

Inspiring our students

Professor Birkhead is widely renowned for his dynamic teaching. Earlier this year, he was awarded a prestigious National Teaching Fellowship for the outstanding impact of his work on students’ learning experience.

This success follows a series of notable achievements in teaching: Professor Birkhead has previously been named UK Bioscience Teacher of the Year, as well as receiving the UK Teacher of the Year Award for Animal and Plant Sciences and the Senate Award for Sustained Excellence in Teaching.

Breaking new research ground

A distinguished name in the field of animal and plant sciences, Professor Birkhead has been celebrated internationally for his contribution to research.

Last year, he was awarded the Godman-Salvin Medal for distinguished ornithological work by the British Ornithologists' Union and the Founders' Medal of the Society for the Study of the History of Natural History (SHNH), for contributions to the history and bibliography of natural history.

He has also been recognised for his outstanding work by the Association for the Study of Animal Behaviour (ASAB) and has been a Fellow of the highly prestigious Royal Society since 2004.

Saving our seabirds

Named by BBC Wildlife magazine as one of Britain’s most influential conservation heroes, Professor Birkhead is well known for making a real difference for our wildlife.

Now he is leading the way in a national campaign to preserve declining seabird populations in the UK.

In October, he shared his expertise in a conversation broadcast on BBC Radio 4. Joined by historian and writer Adam Nicolson and the BBC’s Claudia Hammond, Professor Birkhead discussed how we can inspire public support for seabirds under threat.

Reaching out to the public

With many prestigious awards and popular books to his name, Professor Birkhead is widely recognised for his outstanding commitment to communicating science to the public.

This year, he was awarded the Stephen Jay Gould Prize for increasing public understanding of evolutionary biology, and an award from the Zoological Society of London for his renowned book The Most Perfect Thing: the Inside (and Outside) of a Bird’s Egg.

In October, Professor Birkhead appeared at Off the Shelf literary festival to discuss The Wonderful Mr Willughby: The First True Ornithologist, his upcoming publication.

Professor Birkhead’s lecture and exhibition will allow the audience to further explore this fascinating aspect of ornithological history.

For more information click here