George Varley was born in 1910 and educated at Cambridge University, Cambridge, England. As a student, he became interested in mathematical models relating to population dynamics, a subject that would fascinate him for his entire career. He completed his Ph.D. in 1935 and then held a series of positions at University of California at Riverside, Cambridge University, King’s College at Newcastle, and finally he was appointed Hope Professor at Oxford. He served in this latter capacity for 30 years, retiring in 1978. At Oxford, Varley worked on winter moth for 20 years, producing an unusually complete understanding of its biology, and developing key factor analysis as a method of analyzing life tables. It was a technique that would become a basic ecological method for analyzing animal populations. Varley’s work proved to be very influential in population ecology. He died in 1983.
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