Inaugural Lecture of Professor Zongbo Shi

Teaching and Learning Building
Thursday 7 July 2022 (16:30-18:00)

Contact Caroline Durbin -

Professor Zongbo Shi
Professor Zongbo Shi

This is an in-person event at the Teaching and Learning Building (Lecture Theatre 1) at the University of Birmingham.

The lecture will also be streamed live via Zoom Webinar. Registration for the webinar is here. 

Airborne particles - the lifecycle of an invisible killer

In every breath we take, we inhale about 2.5 million airborne particles. A proportion of this enters our body, with those extremely smaller ones moving to vital organs including brain. They are invisible killers. But every coin has two sides. Through regional and global cycling, nutrients carried by airborne particles fertilizes trees and phytoplankton. In this lecture, I will explore the lifecycle of airborne particles, from their birth, to atmospheric transport, to their deposition and impacts. 

Zongbo Shi is an atmospheric biogeochemist with a particular interest in the sources, processes and impacts of air pollutants. He gained his undergraduate degree in Geology at the Huainan Institute of Mining (now Anhui University of Science and Technology). He then went to China University of Mining and Technology (Beijing) as a MSc student. He did not complete his MSc but converted to a PhD candidate directly. He obtained his PhD in Environmental Chemistry there. He then worked as a research associate at Tsinghua University, after which he was awarded a Japan Society for the Promotion of Sciences fellowship at Prefectural University of Kumamoto. After this fellowship he came to the UK to work as a research fellow for a NERC-funded project on iron biogeochemistry at the University of Leeds. In 2011, he was awarded the NERC independent research fellowship and joined the University of Birmingham as the very first Birmingham Fellow. He has worked at the university ever since. 

Zongbo has successfully led large multi-disciplinary, multi-institutional and cross-border research programmes including the UKRI-NERC/NSFC funded Atmospheric Pollution and Human Health in a Chinese Megacity programme. Working with many national and international collaborators, 20 PhD students, 10 postdoctoral researchers, and funded by UKRI-NERC, Royal Society, Met Office, and BEIS, Zongbo has published more than 150 peer-reviewed papers. He is currently commissioning a national facility – the UK’s Air Quality Supersite Triplet. He has led a highly successful cross-disciplinary collaboration with economists to develop tools to support air quality management. Zongbo is an associate editor of Environmental Chemistry and PlosOne and serves as a member of the NERC Advisory Network.

This event is open to all.

Guests are invited to join Professor Shi for refreshments in the Lapworth Museum after the lecture. 

Culture and collections

Schools, institutes and departments

Services and facilities