An Italian economist has joined the University of Leicester as a professor of economics. Vincenzo Denicolo studied at the University of Bologna and the University of Oxford and, prior to joining Leicester, was a full professor (professore ordinario) at Bologna. He has also taught at the University of Parma and held visiting posts at the University of Cambridge, the European University Institute and the University of California, Berkeley. His specialism is applied economic theory. Professor Denicolo works mainly in the field of industrial organisation, although he maintains an interest in the theory of social choice, and he has published extensively on that subject. Recent research interests have focused on the "controversial" economics of innovation and intellectual property rights. "Some economists see intellectual property rights as an unjustified form of government intervention, while others are increasingly voicing concerns that today intellectual property protection may be excessive," he said. "My view is more positive. Not being an ardent believer in the free market, I am not prejudicially against government intervention, including the granting of intellectual property rights." Away from academia, he said, he used to be a "relatively strong" amateur cyclist, who rode more than 4,000 miles a year. However, his hobbies have lately become "more static", and he now prefers playing chess.
A chair in palliative care to commemorate Maddie Katz, a long-time benefactor of the University of California, Los Angeles, has been awarded to one of the doctors who helped care for her during her battle with cancer. Thomas Strouse, currently medical director of the Stewart and Lynda Resnick Neuropsychiatric Hospital at UCLA and vice-chair for clinical affairs in the department of psychiatry and biobehavioural sciences, said he took personal and professional pride in the appointment. "Inspiration comes to me from my patients and my family," he said. "I am grateful that...Maddie allowed me to care for her in the most intimate moments of her passing." Professor Strouse has held a faculty position at UCLA since completing his medical training at the institution in 1991. He was formerly director of UCLA's consultation/liaison psychiatry service and has also worked with the UCLA Liver Transplant Program. He said he was drawn to palliative care because it is organised around the needs of the patient. "We strive to manage a patient's pain and symptoms in the most effective and efficient way possible," he explained. "The goal is to prevent unnecessary hospital stays or trips to the emergency room." Professor Strouse received the Robert T. Angarola Award from the Southern California Cancer Pain Initiative in 2003 for his work on improving the quality of life for cancer patients.
University of Toronto
A former visiting research scientist at Pixar Animation Studios - home of Toy Story and other acclaimed animated films - has won an award for his work. The 2010 Steacie Prize for natural sciences, which rewards outstanding research carried out in Canada by a scholar under the age of 40, was given to Aaron Hertzmann, associate professor of computer science at the University of Toronto, for his work linking computer graphics, machine learning and computer vision. "I am fascinated by the simple tasks that we as humans do easily and unthinkingly but that are extraordinarily difficult for computers," he said. "I especially focus on things with a visual component." Problems that Professor Hertzmann has solved include computer rendering of images in diverse artistic styles, automated construction of mathematical and computational models of human locomotion for computer animation in film and computer games and finding new methods for removing the effects of "camera shake" in digital photography.
St George's, University of London/Kingston University
A quantitative social scientist is looking forward to reconnecting with local people as part of her new role at St George's, University of London and Kingston University. Ann Bowling has been appointed professor of healthcare for older adults at the Faculty of Health and Social Care Sciences, run jointly by the two institutions. She said her new role would enable her to return to something she loves. "Earlier in my career I did a lot of local community research, and I really enjoyed being hands on and having contact with people," she said. "I wanted to have that kind of contact again, and being based here among such a diverse community will be great for that." Professor Bowling studied for an undergraduate degree in economics in sociology at Kingston Polytechnic, followed by a master's in sociology as applied to medicine at Bedford College before studying for a PhD in sociology at the University of Wales, Swansea. She has previously worked in public health and primary healthcare, including posts at St Bartholomew's Hospital, the London School of Hygiene and Tropical Medicine and University College London.
Architectural historian James Stevens Curl has been appointed visiting professor in the School of Architecture and Design, University of Ulster.
The University of Central Lancashire has appointed three new readers and a professor. Stewart Eyres, Philip Kostov and Helen Codd have become readers in astronomy, quantitative economics, and law and criminal justice respectively. Gary Bond has been named professor of materials chemistry.
Deborah Harry has been appointed chief finance officer at the University of Lincoln. She was previously finance director at the University of Northampton.
The 2010 Pembroke College Prize has been awarded to Patricia Emison, professor of art history at the University of New Hampshire. The annual competition, set up by the Johnson Society of London, honours the best essay on a set subject. The theme for 2010 was "novelty".
David Finkelstein, research professor of media and print culture at Queen Margaret University in Edinburgh, has joined the board of trustees of the National Library of Scotland.
Richard Lister has been appointed deputy provost (professional services) of University Campus Suffolk. He was previously director of planning and resources and executive director at the institution.
The University of Hull has appointed four academics to its department of psychology. Rachel Anderson has been appointed lecturer, joining from Leeds Metropolitan University. Steve Dewhurst joins as senior lecturer, leaving a parallel post at Lancaster University. Chris Longmore has been appointed lecturer, moving from the University of Exeter where he was associate research Fellow and teaching Fellow. Kazuyo Nakabayashi joins from Teesside University as a lecturer.
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