John was born in the United Kingdom on December 28, 1980. He received the M.Sci. degree in Mathematics and Physics from Durham University in 2003, and the M.Sc in Optics and Photonics, with distinction, from Imperial College London in 2004.
Between 2003-2010 he was a member of the Femtosecond Optics Group at Imperial College London, working with Prof. J. Roy Taylor. He obtained his PhD in 2008, and was awarded the 2009 European Physical Society Quantum Electronics and Optics Thesis Prize. In 2009 he was one of the first recipients of the Imperial College Junior Research Fellowship.
He joined Prof. Philip Russell’s division at the Max Planck Institute for the Science of Light, Erlangen, Germany in 2010 to lead the ultrafast nonlinear optics sub-group; and was promoted to a W2 level position (equivalent to Associate Professor) in 2012.
In October 2015 he was awarded a European Research Council (ERC) Starting Grant to study high-energy soliton dynamics and in 2016 he joined Heriot-Watt University as an Associate Professor.