George R. Thompson, Bachelor of Science (BSc) and associate of the Royal School of Mines (ARSM), was professor of mining at the University of Leeds, England, until 1910. He was a specialist in coal mining, and one of the contributors to a book on Practical coal-mining (1907-1908) edited by W.S. Boulton. He may also be the same person as George R. Thompson who contributed a note on 'The microscopic examination of rocks' to the Transactions of the Geological Society of Glasgow (1900).
In 1910 Thompson succeeded Professor James G. Lawn* as principal and professor of mining at the South African School of Mines and Technology in Johannesburg (later the University of the Witwatersrand). Though an expert in his own right, he appears to have had little understanding of gold mining on the Witwatersrand. He also experienced disciplinary problems with students and following a student boycott of classes resigned at the end of 1911 or in 1912. He was succeeded as principal by G.S. Corstorphine* and as professor of mining by J.S. Cellier*.