Sir John studied Natural Sciences at Gonville & Caius College, Cambridge. He became a teacher of Chemistry and creating ‘Science across the World’, a schools networking project involving hundreds of schools in Europe, Asia and America. He also piloted the ‘Technology Enhancement Programme’, which developed learning materials for schools. Sir John is Senior Adviser in Education at the Gatsby Foundation, Emeritus Professor of Chemistry at the University of York, former President of the Royal Society of Chemistry, Founding Director of the National Science Learning Centre and was National STEM Director for the English government from 2006 to 2010. He was knighted by Queen Elizabeth II in 2010 for services to education.