Professor Ian Boyd is chief scientific adviser at the Department for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs (Defra). The chief scientific adviser is responsible for overseeing 'the quality of evidence that the Department relies on for policy decisions'.
Bronwyn Hill, permanent secretary at Defra, said of Boyd's appointment: 'Professor Boyd brings with him a wealth of experience that will be of great value in maintaining the high quality scientific research and evidence that the Department is renowned for.'  Boyd's main research background is in polar science, having worked for the British Antarctic Survey from 1987 to 2001. More recently, he was chief scientist for a US Navy study that looked into the behavioural responses of whales to military sonar. He was also a co-developer of environmental risk management procedures used by the Royal Navy. 
Other advisory and board roles
Boyd is also a member of the Scottish Science Advisory Council, chairman of a scientific advisory board on decommissioning for Oil and Gas UK and chair of the committee that monitors the environmental compliance around Europe’s largest oil terminal at Sullom Voe in Shetland.  He is also Professor in Biology at the University of St Andrews.