A History of the Department
The Department of Zoology at the University of Oxford traces its origins to 1860, when George Rolleston became the first Linacre Professor. This coincided with the opening of the University Museum, where zoological research and teaching was then based. Rolleston had responsibility for the zoological collections at the Museum, other than the entomology collections. There have been ten subsequent holders of the Linacre Chair since Rolleston, the current being Professor Peter Holland FRS. As the Department expanded and diversified, additional Established Chairs were created: the Hope Professorship (currently held by Charles Godfray CBE FRS), the Professorship of Zoology (held by Tim Coulson), the Luc Hoffmann Chair of Field Ornithology (held by Ben Sheldon) and the Tasso Leventis Chair of Biodiversity (currently vacant). Professor Peter Holland is the current Head of Department.
The Biodiversity Institute (BIO; Director Natalie Seddon, Associate Director Kathy Willis), is an interdisciplinary research institute focussed on the challenges facing global biological diversity in the 21st Century and the translation of science into policy, planning and strategy.
Since 2010, the Department of Zoology has held an Athena Swan Silver Award, in recognition of its good employment practise for women. It is the first department in Oxford to receive this award.