About this website

Hi, I'm Andy Buckley; welcome to my haphazard website.

If you need to contact me, please use email. Or Twitter. I get too much email, so apologies in advance for the probable delay.

I'm a particle physicist at University of Glasgow , mainly working on the ATLAS experiment at CERN, but a lot of what I do involves sitting on the fence between theory and experiment, provocatively thumbing my nose at both sides. Glasgow is a wonderful environment for particle physicists, including PhD studentships, in part because we have such a strong relationship with our theory colleagues -- please apply to us, talented students and postdocs!

My work is mainly on QCD simulations and measurements, which has over the years meant Monte Carlo generator development, tuning, validation etc., ATLAS detector simulation, measurements of soft QCD such as the "underlying event", and hadronic jet physics. These days I'm still interested in MC things, but with an emphasis on jet modelling and heavy flavour production. I've also somehow ended up doing quite a bit of work on beyond-Standard Model limit setting in the last few years. I've also written and maintain an awful lot of scientific software, which should be increasingly documented on this website. Most people in the field probably know me as one of a) author of Rivet/Professor/pyslha/hepthesis/..., b) former convener of the ATLAS MC Generators group, c) that guy who had the ROOT rant many moons ago.

I also like to play drums (quite well, thank you) and guitars (not so much), fiddle with maths and programming, climb/bike/ski/fly up and down mountains, and generally not act my age. I'm interested in the sort of liberal politics that involves looking out for everyone in society, rather than jumping on every anticorporate & anti-American bandwagon that comes along.


Despite having long lost most of my original accent, I grew up in Belfast and lived there until I moved to Cambridge at the age of 18 to do a degree in physics. I stayed there for nearly 8 years, picked up 3 degrees (all in physics, I'm afraid) and a wonderful girlfriend, now wife. We then moved to Durham, where I worked as a sort of embedded experimentalist among theorists at the IPPP in Durham, which allowed me enough freedom and provided enough inspiration to give me various academic opinions and habits that probaby irritate other experimentalists. I started involvement with the ATLAS experiment (my PhD having been on b-physics at LHCb) via a visiting post at UCL during that time, and went "full-time" on ATLAS in 2009 when I took an Advanced SUPA Fellowship in Edinburgh. I was in Edinburgh for 3 years, then moved to CERN in 2012 on a Scientific Associateship, mainly to coordinate the ATLAS MC Generators group (now PMG). That stay was very productive: we found the Higgs boson, produced a child (now superseded by a newer model), got a fair bit of skiing done, and discovered the Holy Grail that is a combined pain au chocolat and croissant d'amandes. I also switched allegiance to Glasgow during that time, funded by the wonderful Royal Society as a research fellow, and appointed as a lecturer a bit later.


This site started off as a Web page for a radio show of the same name which I hosted on Cambridge University Radio (CUR) along with Phil Cowans and Graeme Hill. This was back in the days before CUR got proper AM broadcasting, so we were pretty much talking to ourselves! When the show stopped, I decided to keep the domain name, then insectnation.co.uk. Later I decided that I'd rather be a .org. Yes, we stole the name from a Bill Bailey skit.

The site has been through many incarnations, starting in the period when the Web was in flux, I had lots of time (although it didn't feel like it back then), and writing HTML, JavaScript, PHP, and suchlike was exciting and pioneering. Now everyone and their dog is doing that for cash, and I'm happy to have gone back to basics via the nice 'n' simple Nikola static site generator.