Pallab Ghosh (born 1962) is a science correspondent for BBC News. Born in India, he came to the United Kingdom in 1963, he studied physics at Imperial College, London between 1980 and 1983 and has been a science journalist since 1984. He won the Media Natura Environment Award, and BT's Technology Journalist of the Year.
He has interviewed notable figures including the first man on the moon, Neil Armstrong; the creator of the World Wide Web, Tim Berners Lee; and cosmologist Stephen Hawking. Ghosh has covered subjects including the human genome project, cloning, stem cell research and genetically modified (GM) crops.
He began his career in the British Electronics and Computer Press before joining New Scientist as the magazine's Science News Editor. Ghosh joined BBC News in 1989. He worked as a general news producer on BBC Radio 4's The World at One and then went on to become a senior producer on the Today Programme.
As science correspondent, Ghosh has broken several important stories, notably the cloned Dolly the sheep having arthritis, and the abandonment of the construction of a primate research centre by Cambridge University because of fears of attacks from animal rights activists.
GM and the BMA
In 2003 Ghosh reported that the Science Board of the British Medical Association (BMA) was reviewing the organisation's precautionary approach to GM crops and food. There was particular concern that the Zambian Government had cited the BMA's advice, that health risks could not be ruled out, as part of the reason it had turned away much needed grain shipments during a food shortage. The BMA issued a press release the same day quoting its spokesperson Vivienne Nathanson, which stated that the BBC report was "wrong" and "totally incorrect." The following year The BMA admitted it had indeed reviewed its stance on GM crops, and decided that new research suggested that GM crops posed no health risk.
Ghosh was formerly President of the World Federation of Science Journalists, and is a past chairman of the Association of British Science Writers. In these roles he has attempted to promote a more direct approach to science journalism, with the introduction of national and international prizes for investigative journalism.
Ghosh has also introduced schemes to get people from more diverse backgrounds into the higher levels of science journalism. He believes that those reporting on scientific issues that increasingly have a social dimension should be more representative of their community.