April 3, 2008

The University of Bristol has made two senior appointments at its Centre for East Asian Studies. Yongjin Zhang will join from the University of Auckland as director of the centre and as professor of East Asian studies, taking up the post in July. Jeffrey Henderson is leaving the University of Manchester to join the centre as Leverhulme research professor of international development. Ray Forrest, acting director of the centre, said: "These two new senior appointments represent the next stage of the centre's development and will add considerable intellectual weight and international experience. We set out in 2005 to become a major new focal point for research and teaching in this field and we are already well on the way to achieving that aim."

Len Hall has been appointed pro vice-chancellor at the University of Bristol. He is currently professor of molecular genetics and dean of medical and veterinary sciences and will join the four-strong team of pro vice-chancellors from September. He will have responsibility for personnel and staff development and replaces David Clarke, who has been promoted to the new post of deputy vice-chancellor. Professor Hall came to Bristol in 1983 as a lecturer in the department of biochemistry, became a professor in 1998 and was made head of department two years later. In 2004, he became dean of medical and veterinary sciences.

Ikutaro Kakehashi, founder of musical equipment company Roland, has been honoured by the University of Glamorgan for his contribution both to the music industry and to music education. Mr Kakehashi was due to receive an honorary professorship at a ceremony in Cardiff this week, which will include his inaugural lecture and the official opening of the Roland Music Academy at the university's new multimillion-pound ATRiuM facility. Mr Kakehashi was born in 1930 in Osaka, Japan, was orphaned at the age of two and nearly died from tuberculosis when he was 20. He began his working life repairing watches and building radios before discovering his love of music at the age of 28, when he began making musical instruments.

David Brown, director of the Lancaster China Management Centre at Lancaster University and professor of strategy and information systems, has won the North West of England UKTI Greater China Recognition Award 2008 for his contribution in building partnerships and fostering Sino-UK relationships. "Receiving this award reflects the commitment over 20 years that many of my colleagues in Lancaster University Management School have made to try to understand China. Our aim is for every Lancaster management graduate to share the benefits from this long research programme in the world's most vibrant economy," he said.

Ian Douglas of the University of Hertfordshire has been appointed national chair of the Higher Education Liaison Officers Association. The association, which has more than 700 members from over 140 higher education institutions in the UK, is the professional body for staff who manage links with prospective university students and their families. Mr Douglas has worked at Hertfordshire since 2000 and is currently undertaking an EdD (practice-based PhD) looking at student progression to higher education. "My personal aim in this new national role is to support students in making an informed and well-researched choice about the right course for them at the most appropriate institution," he said. "I see this as the central focus for the association. Issues impacting on the sector include changes to student funding, the changes in the 14-19 curriculum including diplomas, as well as the impact of segmentation and further differentiation within the sector."

An education researcher from the University of East Anglia has been awarded a prize by the BMW Group. Anna Robinson-Pant of the School of Education and Lifelong Learning won the prize for her research on the challenges faced by international students during their time studying for their PhD in the UK. The BMW Group Award for Intercultural Learning was awarded for her book, Cross-Cultural Perspectives on Educational Research.

Deborah Baker, course leader on the MA photography course at University College Falmouth, has joined the college's iRes (Interactive Art and Design) "research cluster" as an associate researcher. Dr Baker is an artist and photographer and uses still photography and video cameras to produce images that "explore the concepts of memory, time and space". She explained: "By photographing the moment just before or after an event, I look for an awareness of meaning that is not necessarily described by the actual image, but suggested in a symbolic or metaphorical sense".

Aston University is celebrating a host of research awards for its staff. Mike West, executive dean of Aston Business School, has been awarded a grant of £470,000 by the Service Delivery and Organisation Programme of the National Institute for Health Research to investigate the effectiveness of "multiprofessional teamworking" in the NHS. Keith Wilson from the School of Life and Health Sciences has been elected as the UK Schools of Pharmacy member of the council of the Royal Pharmaceutical Society. Peter Brett, from the School of Engineering and Applied Science, has won an £111,0000 grant from ear implant company Cochlear to investigate microsurgical tools for cochlear implantation. Sahar Al-Malaika, also from the School of Engineering and Applied Science, has won a £235,000 Link award from the Department for Food and Rural Affairs to examine the cultivation of rosemary in the UK "to provide raw materials for a new genre of bio-based antioxidants". The grant is part of an £819,000 collaborative project involving 12 partners, under the sustainable products and materials initiative.

Anglia Ruskin University law postgraduates Victoria Strathern and Kate Radley are off to India, after winning the Law Society's national Client Interviewing Competition 2008. The students, who are on the university's legal practice course, will now compete in the National Law School of India University finals in Bangalore later this month.

A Queen's University Belfast executive MBA graduate has won two prizes for her research into the internationalisation of small and medium-sized enterprises. Susan Glenn was named best student by the Chartered Management Institute and was judged by the Ulster Bank to have completed the best dissertation. Ms Glenn, who works for McMullan Architectural Systems as a finance manager, completed the part-time executive MBA through Queen's Management School. Her dissertation was on the approach taken by ten SMEs that had started to export their goods or services.

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