Intended for healthcare professionals


No sign of slowing down

BMJ 1997; 314 doi: (Published 08 March 1997) Cite this as: BMJ 1997;314:695

Sir Richard Doll features in a photographic exhibition of 20th century British doctors which opens this week. He tells Hilary Bower about his lifetime of research.

At 84 Sir Richard Doll has no intention of slowing down in his pursuit of high quality research, which he has helped develop from data gathering into today's statistically rigorous epidemiology. Fêted as the world's leading cancer epidemiologist, his most famous finding-that smoking causes cancer-will be 50 years old in the year 2000. By then Sir Richard hopes he will have added to his body of work more research on the causes of childhood cancer, the health effects of electromagnetic fields, and the lifesaving links between diet and heart disease. But what he most wants for the millennium is simple. “I want to see it,” he says.

Sir Richard has published 436 pieces of research.


At the last count Sir Richard has published 436 works-eight for every year of his working life. He has won 22 awards and held some of the most prestigious posts of clinical research. Technically retired, he is an honorary member of the Imperial Cancer Research Fund's Cancer Studies Unit in Oxford, though his only concession to the honorary status is starting at 10 am, allowing …

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