Nick Pope is a British journalist and media commentator. He served for 21 years in the British Ministry of Defence. He is best known for a role he undertook for the British Government from 1991 to 1994 which involved investigating reports of UFO sightings to determine their defence significance. Pope stated: "We received about 200 to 300 reports a year." He did not share the MoD's view that conventional explanations could be found for all UFO sightings. He resigned in 2006 but he continues his research and investigation in a private capacity. In 2009 MoD announced that UFO sightings would no longer be investigated.
Open Skies, Closed Minds is Pope's autobiographical account of his interest in ufology. It provides an overview of the UFO phenomenon, with the emphasis on Pope's three-year tour of duty as the Ministry of Defence's UFO desk officer. In 1997 he released a second book on similar themes entitled The Uninvited: An exposé of the alien abduction phenomenon. His book Encounter in Rendlesham Forest, written with John Burroughs, USAF, Ret., and Jim Penniston, USAF, Ret., was published in April 2014.
Having worked on the MoD's UFO project, staff at the National Archives asked Pope to select some cases that could be highlighted to the media in the run-up to the release of the government's archives of UFO files. As such, he did hundreds of TV, radio, newspaper and magazine interviews on the story and thus became the public face of the file release project.
On May 29, 2019, Pope wrote in an article in the New York Post:
"UFOs have finally come out of the fringe and into the mainstream. Multiple stories have appeared in major media outlets. There is congressional interest. Pilots, radar operators and intelligence officers involved in these encounters and investigations are going on the record, calling for action. It’s difficult to avoid the conclusion that there’s a bigger picture here. The pace of events is picking up, and we seem to be building up to something. Something is happening. Something new. Something big."