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Mr Jonathan Aylen - research

Research interests

Jonathan’s current research focuses on four very diverse interdisciplinary areas: the management of R&D, the history of technology, wildfires and climate change.

He has won two “best paper” prizes - receiving the Williams Award of the Institute of Materials, Minerals and Mining in 2007 for published work on time series forecasting with Keven Albertson and an €1,000 award from Promote, the Centre for Management of Innovation in Process Industry in Luleå, Sweden for a paper on “Stretch” subsequently published in R&D Management in 2013. 

His recent book on wide strip mill technology, Ribbon of Fire written with an Italian colleague, is about  technology transfer from the USA to Europe. He retains his engineering interest in rolling technology and is a member of the Bulk Metal Forming Committee, a technical committee of the Technology and Materials Science Division of IOM3. He advised the steel company, Corus (now Tata), for 18 years on forecasting, foresight, investment in new technology and knowledge management issues. He is keynote speaker for forthcoming international conferences on Mill Performance and on Rolls.

His work on wildfires concentrates on the likelihood and consequences of fires.  He has just completed a NERC funded project on Wildfire Threat led by Julia McMorrow, working with the Forestry Commission to analyse the risk, spread and impact of wildfire.  His research on wildfire work has helped inform policy and practice towards fire risk. 

His latest work on weather and climate with Gina Cavan and Kevin Albertson is due to appear in Climatic Change, following earlier published work in Climate Research and Journal of Environmental Management.

His recent research on history looks at Cold War technology and at how the world went digital in areas such as missile guidance and process plant control.  His next paper due out in early 2015 is on the technology of nuclear weapon design and contradicts received wisdom on the issue.