Project team

About the Board of Longitude project team.

Principal Investigator: Simon Schaffer (University of Cambridge)


Richard Dunn (Royal Museums Greenwich)

As Curator of the History of Navigation at the National Maritime Museum, this project falls squarely within my research interests… Read full outline

Rebekah Higgitt (University of Kent)

One strand of my current research relates to the history of the Royal Observatory, Greenwich, an institution which, like the Board of Longitude, was established in order to help find a solution to the problem of finding longitude at sea… Read full outline

Engagement Officer

Katherine McAlpine (Royal Museums Greenwich)

As Public Engagement Officer for the project, I’m lucky enough to work with an incredibly talented bunch of curators, historians and researchers to find innovative and interesting ways to bring their research to a wider audience. I have a background in science communication and history of science, and am fascinated by objects, and how to open up museum collections to more people. 

Postdoctoral Researchers

Alexi Baker (University of Cambridge)

I am planning to research the earlier history of the ‘Board of Longitude’ and its interactions with the public…Read full outline

Nicky Reeves (University of Cambridge)

I will be investigating the Board’s role between the late 1760s and its dissolution in 1828… Read full outline

Doctoral Students

Katy Barrett (Royal Museums Greenwich)

Project: The Wanton Line: Hogarth and the public life of longitude

This thesis considers the eighteenth-century search for the longitude through Plate 8 of William Hogarth’s A Rake’s Progress, where a ‘longitude lunatic’ seeks to solve the problem on the wall of his cell in Bedlam… Read full outline

Eóin Phillips (University of Cambridge)

Project: Making Time Fit: Astronomers, Artisans and the State, 1770-1820

The thesis focuses on the relationship between the clock- and watch-making communities inLondon and the institutions and personnel associated with the Admiralty, East India Company andthe Board of Longitude… Read full outline

Sophie Waring (University of Cambridge)

Project: Thomas Young, the Board of Longitude and the Age of Reform

The project will attempt to provide a focused expansion of already existing work on the first half of the nineteenth century concerned with science in culture and the metropolis by looking to the papers of the Board of Longitude and the work and correspondence of Thomas Young… Read full outline

Project Advisory Board