Jayne Birkby is an Associate Professor of Exoplanetary Science at the University of Oxford and a Fellow of Brasenose College. She received her PhD in Astrophysics from the University of Cambridge, and has previously held a postdoctoral scholarship at Leiden University, a NASA Sagan Fellowship at Harvard University and an Assistant Professorship at University of Amsterdam. She is an ERC Starting Grant Laureate, where she is PI of the project "exoZoo: High definition and time-resolved studies of exoplanet atmospheres - a new window on the extreme diversity of the exoplanet zoo".
Prof Birkby and her group specialise in the observation and study of exoplanet atmospheres. They use the world’s largest telescopes and highest resolution instruments to determine the composition and dynamics of the atmospheres of these other worlds. Prof Birkby has a keen interest in connecting exoplanet studies with chemistry, geology, and biology in the pursuit of the answer to: are we alone? Her research interests also include the study of very low mass stars, the most numerous but enigmatic stars in our local stellar neighbourhood, as well as aiding in the design of new instrumentation to study exoplanets. Her goals are to understand how the incredible diversity of the exoplanet population was formed, and to survey the very nearest terrestrial exoplanets with the upcoming generations of Extremely Large Telescopes (ELTs).