Photo of Tony Hey

Job Title
Chief Data Scientist
Office Phone Number
Office Location
RAL R89,F.31
Mobile Phone Number


Professor Tony Hey BA (Hons), DPhil (Oxon), FBCS, FIET, CEng, FREng, FPinst, CITP, SMIEEE, FAAAS, FACM
Chief Data Scientist

I moved to STFC as a Chief Data Scientist in 2015. I originally trained as a theoretical physicist at Oxford University, at both undergraduate and at postgraduate level. I received my doctorate in theoretical particle physics in 1970 and spent two years as a post-doctoral fellow at Caltech in California and then a further two years at CERN in Geneva.

I began my university career in 1974 in the Physics Department of the University of Southampton in the UK. In 1986 I moved to a new, combined Electronics and Computer Science Department at Southampton. The Department has a world-renowned Opto-electronics Research Centre and they were one of the original three research groups pioneering the use of optical fibers for telecommunications.

My parallel computing research group was one of the leading hardware and software groups worldwide. My group were instrumental in designing novel, transputer-based parallel computing systems, developing parallel benchmarks for distributed memory machines, and parallelizing a wide range of applications. I was co-author of the first draft of the MPI message-passing standard.

I spent sabbaticals at MIT, Caltech, IBM Research and Los Alamos National Laboratory. I am the author of over 150 research papers in particle physics, computer science and e-Science. I also am the co-author of a best-selling graduate text on ‘Gauge Theories in Particle Physics’ and popular science books on quantum mechanics and relativity. My latest ‘popular’ science book, ‘The Computing Universe: A Journey through a Revolution’, was published in January 2015 and is an accessible overview of the both the fundamentals and the applications of computer science.

Prior to that I held various positions including:

  • 2014 – 2015 Senior Data Science Fellow of the eScience Institute of the University of Washington
  • 2007 – 2014 Vice President, Microsoft Research
  • 2005 – 2007 Corporate Vice President for Technical Computing, Microsoft Corporation
  • 2001 -2005 Director of the UK e-Science Initiative, UK Engineering and Physical Sciences Research Council
  • 1999 - 2001 Dean of the Faculty of Engineering and Applied Science
  • 1994 - 1999 Head of Department of Electronics and Computer Science
  • 1986 - 1994 Professor of Computation in Computer Science
  • 1974 - 1986 Lecturer, Senior Lecturer and Reader in Physics

I also hold a number of current appointments including

  • Member, DOE Advanced Scientific Computing Advisory Committee (ASCAC)
  • Trustee, American Universities Inc.
  • Co-chair, UK E-infrastructure Leadership Council, BEIS
  • ESFRI Working Group on investment strategies in e-infrastructures
  • Member, Heidelberg Institute for Theoretical Science Advisory Board
  • Member, NSF DataONE project Advisory Board
  • Member, Networked Quantum Information Technologies project Advisory Board, UK National Quantum Technologies Programme
  • Member, University of Oxford Research Committee
  • Member, Imperial College Data Science Institute Advisory Board
  • Editor, ‘Concurrency and Computation: Practice and Experience’, Wiley.

Selected Publications


  • T Hey and A E Trefethen, “e-Science and its implications”  Phil. Trans. R. Soc. London, 361, 1809 (2003)
  • T Hey and A E Trefethen, “The Data Deluge: An e-Science Perspective”, In “Grid Computing - Making the Global Infrastructure a Reality”, Eds F Berman, G C Fox and A J G Hey, Wiley, pp.809-824 (2003)
  • T Hey and A E Trefethen, “Cyberinfrastructure for e-Science”, Science 308 (5723), 817 (2005)
  • T Hey and J M N Hey, “e-Science and its Implications for the Library Community”, Library Hi Tech 24, 515 (2006)
  • G Bell, T Hey and A Szalay, “Beyond the Data Deluge”, Science 6 March 1297 (2009)
  • A Szalay, T Hey et al.
  • “GrayWulf: Scalable Clustered Architecture for Data-Intensive Computing”, Proceedings of the 42nd Hawaii International Conference on System Sciences, January 2009, paper no. 720.
  • “The Fourth Paradigm: Data-Intensive Scientific Discovery”, Edited by Tony Hey, Stewart Tansley and Kristin Tolle, Microsoft Research, October 2009

       Computer Science

  • C R Askew, D B Carpenter, J T Chalker, A J G Hey, D A Nicole and D J Pritchard, “Simulation of Statistical Mechanical Systems on Transputer Arrays”, Computer Physics Communications 42, 21(1986)
  • I Glendinning and A J G Hey , “Transputer Arrays as FORTRAN Farms for Particle Physics”, Computer Physics Communications, 45, 367 (1987)
  • G C Fox, S W Otto and A J G Hey, “Matrix Algorithms on a Hypercube 1: Matrix Multiplication”, Parallel Computing 1, 17(1987)
  • A J G Hey, “Reconfigurable Transputer Networks – Practical Concurrent Computation”, Philosophical Transactions of the Royal Society, London, A326, 395 (1988)
  • A J G Hey, “Experiments in MIMD Parallelism”, Future Generation Computing Systems, 6, 185 (1990)
  • A J G Hey, “The Genesis Distributed Memory Benchmarks”, Parallel Computing 17, 1275 (1991)
  • C A Addison, V S Getov, A J G Hey, R W Hockney, and I C Wolton, “Benchmarking for Distributed Memory Parallel Systems: Gaining Insight from Numbers” Parallel Computing 20, 1653 (1994)
  • E Strohmaier, T Hey and J J Dongarra, “PARKBENCH: Methodology, Relations and Results”, Lecture Notes in Computer Science (Springer-Verlag), 1067, 770 (1996)

       MPI Standard

  • J J Dongarra, R Hempel, A J G Hey and D W Walker, “A Draft Standard for Message Passing on Distributed Memory Computers”, Invited paper in Proceedings of the Fifth ECMWF Workshop on the Use of Parallel Processors in Meteorology, “Parallel Supercomputing in Atmospheric Science” editors Geerd-R Hoffmann and Tuomo Kauranne, published by World Scientific, 1993.

     Lectures on computation of Physics Nobel Prize winner, Richard Feynman

  • “The Feynman Lectures on Computation”, Edited by A J G Hey and R W Allen, Published by Addison-Wesley, 1996

    Public Understanding of Science

  • Tony Hey and Patrick Walters, “The Quantum Universe”, Published by Cambridge University Press, 1986
  • Tony Hey and Patrick Walters, “The New Quantum Universe”, Published by Cambridge University Press, 2003
  • Tony Hey and Patrick Walters, “Einstein’s Mirror”, Published by Cambridge University Press, 1997
  • Tony Hey and Gyuri Papay, “The Computing Universe: A Journey through a Revolution”, Published by Cambridge University Press, 2015​