Amazon’s Doug Gurr appointed new Director of Natural History Museum

The Trustees of the Natural History Museum in London have appointed Dr Douglas Gurr as the museum’s new Director.

The current Director of the museum, Sir Michael Dixon, announced his intention to step down last year.

Doug Gurr‘s appointment has been approved by The Prime Minister of the UK and he will replace Sir Michael Dixon him later this year.

A varied career

Gurr is currently Country Manager of Amazon UK. Alongside two Mathematics degrees from the University of Cambridge and a PhD in Computing from the University of Edinburgh, Gurr also has an impressive and varied career behind him.

From 2014 to 2016 he was the President of Amazon China. He was Chair of the Board of the Science Museum from 2010 to 2014.

He also taught mathematics and computing at the University of Aarhus in Denmark and was Board Director at Asda-Walmart.

Gurr is currently the Chairman of the British Heart Foundation, a Trustee of the National Gallery and a Trustee of the Landmark Trust.

Passionate about the Museum’s work

natural history museum earth

Luke Jerram/NHM

“The Natural History Museum’s vision of a future where people and planet thrive has never been more relevant and it is a privilege to be invited to lead this globally important cultural and scientific institution,” said Gurr.

He continued, saying that he is “passionate about the work the Museum is doing to tackle the planetary emergency by using its unrivalled collection and leading scientific research to connect millions of people a year with nature. I can’t wait to join the team.”

Leading the Museum to create advocates for the planet

Lord Stephen Green, the Chair of the Trustees for the museum said that “Doug’s academic background, considerable experience in working with public service organisations and digital understanding make him ideal to lead our treasured Museum in our mission to create advocates for the planet. The Board of Trustees and I look forward to working with him at this time of challenges and opportunities for the Museum.”

At the beginning of the year, the Natural History Museum launched a new strategy as it declared a planetary emergency. This includes new galleries, exhibitions and events designed to engage the public with planetary issues.