Chris Bishop has a BA degree in Physics with First Class Honours from Oxford, and a PhD in Theoretical Physics from the University of Edinburgh with a thesis on quantum field theory under the supervision of David Wallace and Peter Higgs. After graduating he joined Culham Laboratory where he worked on the theory of magnetically confined plasma as part of the European controlled fusion programme. He applied neural networks to the problem, but did not achieve controlled fusion.
He subsequently developed an interest in pattern recognition, and became Head of the Applied Neurocomputing Centre at AEA Technology. In 1993, he was elected to a Chair in the Department of Computer Science and Applied Mathematics at Aston University, where he was a member of the Neural Computing Research Group. He then took a sabbatical during which time he was principal organiser of the six month international research programme on Neural networks and Machine learning at the Isaac Newton Institute for Mathematical Sciences in Cambridge, which ran from July to December 1997.
After completion of the Newton Institute programme he joined the Microsoft Research Laboratory in Cambridge where he is Chief Research Scientist and head of the Machine Learning and Perception group.
At the same time as he joined Microsoft Research, he was elected to a Chair of Computer Science at the University of Edinburgh where he is a member of the Institute for Adaptive and Neural Computation in the School of Informatics. He is also a Fellow of Darwin College, Cambridge, a Fellow of the British Computer Society, and has been awarded an Honorary Doctor of Science by Oxford Brookes University.
In 2004 he was elected Fellow of the Royal Academy of Engineering, and in 2007 he was elected Fellow of the Royal Society of Edinburgh.
Chris is the author of the leading textbook Neural Networks for Pattern Recognition (Oxford University Press, 1995) for which Google Scholar lists almost 10,000 citations. His latest textbook Pattern Recognition and Machine Learning (Springer, 2006) has also been widely adopted.
His research interests include probabilistic approaches to machine learning, as well as their application to fields such as biomedical sciences and healthcare.
Bishop holds a Commercial Pilot Licence, and for relaxation he enjoys flying light aircraft, including aerobatics in an Extra 200 unlimited-category aerobatic aircraft. He is married and has two children.
Chris Bishop presented the 2008 Royal Institution Christmas Lectures Hi-tech Trek ... The Quest for the Ultimate Computer'.