Dr John Bamber received his Master of Theology at the University of St Andrews in 1976, before qualifying as a youth worker at Manchester Polytechnic in 1977. After working for over 10 years and conducting a review of the Lancashire Youth Service, he completed his MPhil at Cranwell Institute of Technology in 1989. Following this John became Senior Lecturer in Community Education at the University of Edinburgh, where he developed innovative part-time routes to the BA in Community Education and established the MSc in Community Education.  He received his Doctorate at the University in 2008. 

From 2009, while working for the Centre for Effective Services in Dublin, he was involved in the development of national youth policy while supporting practitioners working with children, families, young people, and young people in youth justice settings. In 2013 he provided expert advice and support to the Irish Presidency Youth Team, including keynote addresses at European conferences and workshops, writing briefings for policy makers, chairing roundtable events and seminars, and providing inputs at the EU Commission Youth Working Party and Ministerial meetings in Brussels. John chaired the Expert Group, established by the European Commission in 2014, to prepare a report on how non-formal learning supports young people to develop their capacity for innovation and creativity in ways that enhances employability. 

Throughout his career John has undertaken personal and commissioned research in a range of areas including widening access to HE, work-based learning, teaching and learning, youth work and managing voluntary organisations. He has published regularly across his research interests, while conducting a wide range of service evaluations and strategic reviews. He has expertise in evaluation and review, service and strategic planning, promoting evidence-informed practice, training and development, policy development, and work with young people. From 2018, as an independent consultant, John has been bringing together practitioners from a range of disciplines, to work on commonly defined problems and issues.