Dr. Chris Thornton
Christopher P. Thornton is the Senior Director of Cultural Heritage and interim Vice-Chair of the Committee for Research and Exploration at the National Geographic Society, as well as Director of the UNESCO World Heritage Site of Bat in the Sultanate of Oman. An expert in the origins of metallurgy and early complex societies in Iran and Arabia, Chris received his Ph.D. in 2009 from the University of Pennsylvania. After lecturing at the University of Pennsylvania and George Mason University, Dr. Thornton joined National Geographic to oversee research grants. In addition to his role advising the National Geographic Society on issues related to cultural heritage, Chris works closely with National Geographic media to promote grantees and explorers in the fields of anthropology, archaeology, astronomy, geography, geology, and paleontology.