Dr Douglas Boyd

Areas of expertise

  • Nurturing international science partnerships
  • Implementing Unified Model (UM) systems
  • Numerical Weather Prediction (NWP)
  • Coordinating projects with internationally-distributed teams

Publications by Douglas Boyd

Current activities

Douglas manages the UM Partner Technical Infrastructure Programme, which provides a framework for members of the UM Partnership to identify improved ways of working and develop priority software infrastructure collaboratively through distributed teams, supporting the wider Science Programme. Areas of development covered by the Technical Programme currently include:

  • software portability and data sharing;
  • UM code optimisation;
  • ancillary file generation;
  • observation monitoring for data assimilation;
  • next-generation modelling systems components;
  • the Cylc workflow engine.

Douglas also oversees the implementation of state-of-the-art global and regional UM systems at partner centres to deliver new research and operational capabilities, troubleshoots model issues, and provides on-site training and mentoring for partners. Douglas facilitates the pull through of science to services through his involvement in Newton Fund (WCSSP) projects and supports Regional Model Evaluation & Development and Data Assimilation & Ensembles activities through the development of improved forecast system tools and participating in the organisation of international workshops. He also works with teams across the Met Office to support contributions to international initiatives such as the World Meteorological Organisation (WMO) Voluntary Cooperation Programme and the NOAA Hazardous Weather Testbed, and he supports WMO activities as an NWP expert.

Career background

Douglas joined the Met Office in 2004 and his early work included research to improve the performance of the Met Office’s operational global four-dimensional variational (4D-Var) data assimilation scheme. He went on to contribute to the initial development of an air quality configuration of the UM (which later became AQUM), developed climatological tools to enhance wind and solar forecast guidance provided to electricity companies, and managed operational regional models and forecast products (covering the Lake Victoria Basin and other regions of Africa) to support National Meteorological and Hydrological Services and the WMO’s SWFDP in Africa.

In 2008, Douglas joined the UM Partnership team and, since then, he has facilitated a wide range of international collaborative activities and played a key role in building working relationships and capabilities across the UM Partnership and with other strategic partners, including developing partners’ capacity to use the UM systems in research and operations and the Met Office’s ability to engage in joint research and development with partners.

Prior to joining the Met Office, Douglas completed an MSci in Theoretical Physics at the University of St Andrews and a PhD in Astrophysics at Cardiff University, in which he extended the capabilities of a hydrodynamic model to simulate the formation and evolution of protostars.