Royal Society announces University Research Fellowships for 2018

19 September 2018

The Royal Society has announced the appointment of 42 new University Research Fellows (URFs) for 2018. The researchers will take up their new posts at institutions across the UK and Ireland at the start of October.

The University Research Fellowship scheme aims to provide outstanding early career scientists, who have the potential to become leaders in their chosen fields, with the opportunity to build an independent research career. The scheme is extremely competitive and URFs are expected to be strong candidates for permanent posts in universities at the end of their fellowships. Many have gone on to enjoy significant national or international recognition for their work.

The announcement includes the appointment of another three Royal Society Tata University Research Fellows thanks to generous support from Tata companies. It also includes the appointment of one Royal Society-Science Foundation Ireland University Research Fellow funded by Science Foundation Ireland and available for outstanding researchers in the Republic of Ireland. One researcher will be supported through the Global Challenges Research Fund.

In total, 24 universities across the UK and Ireland will host the URFs. 13 out of the 42 new appointments (31%) were made to women.

The newly appointed research fellows will be working on research areas including using galaxy surveys to develop our understanding of cosmic acceleration; identifying how insects’ auditory cells respond to sound waves as a model for human hearing defects; understanding the macroscopic world through analysis of quantum correlations; and developing light-responsive machines within the membranes of artificial cells.

The list of appointments is as follows:

Dr Dionysios Anninos
The Atoms of a deSitter Universe
King's College London

Dr Tessa Baker
Probing the Nature of Gravity on Cosmological and Nonlinear Scales.
Queen Mary University of London

Dr Shiladitya Banerjee
Physics of cytoskeletal organisation and cellular morphogenesis
University College London (UCL)

Dr Joseph Barker
Non-equilibrium and quantum dynamics of complex magnets
University of Leeds

Dr Thomas Bauska
Probing the deepest ice core records for new modes of carbon cycle variability with a novel ultra-high-resolution CO2 method
British Antarctic Survey

Dr Michael Booth
Development of light-activated synthetic cells for controllable, targeted modulation of mammalian cells
University of Oxford

Dr Richard Bowman
Robotic microscopy for globally accessible science & healthcare
University of Bath

Dr Radha Boya
Exploring new science and technology with precise angstrom-scale capillaries
University of Manchester

Dr Maria Bruna 
Continuum models and gradient flows of interacting particle systems
University of Cambridge

Dr Yan-Chuan Cai
Cosmology with voids and clusters using galaxy surveys
University of Edinburgh

Dr Ewen Campbell
Cosmic chemistry in the laboratory
University of Edinburgh

Dr Rosalind Coggon
Quantifying Variations in Hydrothermal Contributions to the Earth System
University of Southampton

Dr Beatrice Collins
Metals and Molecular Machines: A New Approach to Autonomous Molecular-Level Motion
University of Bristol

Dr Timothy Craig
Time-varying behaviour of fault systems and seismicity
University of Cambridge

Dr Angela Demetriadou
Plasmons and molecules: Photochemistry in the light-matter strong coupling regime
University of Birmingham

Dr Anastasia Fialkov
Paving a Path to the First Stars
University of Sussex

Dr Noah Fitch
Searching for new physics using ultracold molecules
Imperial College London

Dr Mohammadeali Foroozandeh
Next-Generation Magnetic Resonance Experiments: Evolution, or Intelligent Design?
University of Oxford

Dr Edward Gasson
Arctic ice-shelves and the Earth System
University of Sheffield

Dr Mahdi Godazgar
Symmetries and energy in gravity
Queen Mary University of London 

Dr James Guggenheim
Wavefront shaping for next-generation biomedical photoacoustic imaging
University College London (UCL)

Dr Mark Howard
New Horizons for Fault-Tolerant Quantum Computation
National University of Ireland, Galway (NUIG)

Dr Craig Johnston
Enantioselective Radical Reactions Facilitated by Ion-Binding Catalysis
University of St Andrews

Dr Ohad Kammar
Effectful theories of programming languages: models, abstractions, validation
University of Edinburgh 

Dr Paula Koelemeijer
Mapping seismological landscapes in the deep Earth
University College London (UCL)

Dr Matthew Langton
Membrane-confined artificial molecular machines
University of Oxford

Dr Simon Martin
Species Barriers: Origin, Architecture, and Effects
University of Edinburgh

Dr Adam Monier
Marine viruses and hidden metabolisms: investigating the ecological role of infected phytoplankton
University of Exeter

Dr Laila Moubayidin
Conserved mechanisms regulate symmetry establishment in plant organs
John Innes Centre

Dr Bernhard Naafs
Terrestrial tempeRature Across the Cenozoic Era (TRACE)
University of Bristol

Dr Adam Nahum
Quantum entanglement and random geometry
University of Oxford

Dr Imogen Riddell
Bespoke Materials for Protein Encapsulation and Stabilisation
University of Manchester

Dr Sarah Robinson
Does cell division promote or restrict growth in plants?
University of Oxford

Dr Alexander Romanov
Novel Molecular Design for Energy-Efficient Solution-processed Optoelectronics
University of East Anglia

Dr Stephen Rowley
Multifunctional Quantum Materials
University of Cambridge

Dr Susan Schlimpert
Understanding the mechanistic basis and significance of compartmentalisation and cell division in the multicellular antibiotic-producing bacteria Streptomyces
John Innes Centre

Dr Marek Schoenherr
Precise predictions for the Large Hadron Collider
Durham University

Dr Nicholas Simm
Random matrix theory and log-correlated Gaussian fields
University of Sussex 

Dr Ben Warren
Sound transduction and force production in insect auditory neurons.
University of Leicester

Dr Paul Wilson
Nano and mesoscopic control over 3D surface topography using localised electrochemical synthesis
University of Warwick

Dr Benjamin Withers
Applied gauge-gravity duality beyond equilibrium
University of Southampton

Dr Irene Zanette
Advanced X-ray Imaging for 3D Virtual Histology with a Liquid-Metal-Jet Source
University of Southampton