Doug Cole was at Southampton University, England from 1967 until 1974 where he was awarded a B.Sc. 1st class Honours degree in geology and a Ph.D. on a thesis entitled AUltrasonic velocities in limestones from the Portland Group: Correlation with porosity and other lithological factors@. He joined the Geological Survey of South Africa (now the Council for Geoscience) in 1975 and was based in Pretoria until 1980, before moving to the Western Cape Regional Office in Bellville. From 1975 until 1978, his work was focussed on the oil potential of the northern Karoo Basin and the oil-shale potential of the Whitehill Formation in the Karoo Basin in collaboration with SOEKOR (now PetroSA). Between 1979 and 1992, a significant proportion of time was spent on the uranium potential of the Karoo Basin, including the follow-up of 600 radiometric anomalies detected from the Geological Survey=s Karoo Airborne Survey. From 1993 until 2010, he has undertaken several major tasks, namely the lignite potential of the Western Cape, the metallogenesis of four quarter million-scale maps in the Western Cape, a database and report on diamond deposits in the SADC region, an investigation of the stratigraphy of the Karoo Supergroup in southern Africa and its equivalent in India in collaboration with geologists from the Indian Geological Survey, the building sand potential of the Greater Cape Town region, compilation of a geotourism book entitled AThe building stones of Cape Town: A geological walking tour@, an investigation of geological controls and mining on biodiversity in the Western Cape, identification and management of Small-Scale Mining projects in the Western Cape, and a study of industrial minerals in Gabon. From 2010 until present, Doug Cole has focussed his attention on the shale gas potential of the Karoo Basin, acting as a consultant for Sasol during their sampling programme, siting and monitoring two boreholes for the KARIN Project administered by Johannesburg University and working with the Council for Geoscience’s deep drilling programme in the southwestern part of the Karoo Basin.
After 43 years of studies involving the Karoo Basin, Doug Cole has a comprehensive knowledge of the stratigraphy and hydrocarbon potential of the Karoo Supergroup. He is Secretary of the Karoo Stratigraphic Working Group and is a life member of the Geological Society of South Africa. He has given presentations on various aspects of Karoo geology at fifteen National and International Conferences between 1977 and 2018 and has led three International geological excursions to the southwestern part of the Karoo Basin. He is author or co-author of thirty six publications in National and International journals.