Brian Foster is Alexander von Humboldt Professor at the University of Hamburg and leading scientist at DESY. He is carrying out three major research topics: Deep Inelastic Scattering (DIS) at the ZEUS experiment at HERA; the International Linear collider, of which he was European Director; and new methods of acceleration, principally plasma wave acceleration.

In ZEUS he and his group are mostly working on the combination of the final H1 and ZEUS DIS data and the production of heavy c and b quarks. The ILC uses superconducting high frequency Niobium cavities; Foster’s group is working on methods of increasing their performance, for example by nitrogen doping. In plasma-wave acceleration, Foster’s group is working in the FLASHForward experiment, a new beam line at FLASH which promises to enable unique experiments. Foster is the Spokesman of a Helmholtz Virtual Institute in this research area. He is also a Fellow of the Royal Society.

Academic career

Since 2011 Alexander von Humboldt Professor, University of Hamburg and Leading Scientist, DESY
2004-2011 Head of the Sub-department of Particle Physics in the University of Oxford
2003 Professor of Experimental Physics in the University of Oxford and Fellow of Balliol College
1996-2003 Professor of Experimental Physics in the University of Bristol (Emeritus, 2003) & Head of Particle Physics Group (1992-2003)
1992-1996 Reader, Department of Physics, Bristol University
1999-2000 PPARC Lecturer Fellow
1991-1992 PPARC Advanced Fellow, Bristol University
1984-1992 Lecturer, Department of Physics, Bristol University
1982-1984  Research Associate, Dept. of Physics, Imperial College of Science and Technology, London
1978 Awarded D. Phil. degree, University of Oxford
1978-1982 Research Associate, Rutherford Appleton Laboratory, Chilton


2013-2016 European Director of the Linear Collider Collaboration
Since 2012 Member, Editorial Board, Proceedings of the Royal Society
Since 2011 Chair, Physics Panel for the 2014 UK Research Excellence Framework
Since 2008 Fellow, Royal Society of London
2005-2007 Member Physics Panel for 2007 UK Research Assessment Exercise
Since 2003 Officer of the Order of the British Empire (OBE)
Since 1992 Fellow UK Institute of Physics
1978-1992 Member, UK Institute of Physics
Since 1993 Member, British Association for the Advancement of Science