June 7, 2012

Anglia Ruskin University

Farah Mendlesohn

A newly appointed professor of literary history at Anglia Ruskin University said it was the "sheer diversity" of her new department that drew her to the job. Farah Mendlesohn noted that her colleagues' wide-ranging expertise would also give her an ideal environment to work in. "[I want] to draw attention to the really exciting work my colleagues are engaged with in digital media, in 17th-century literature, drama and the history of the book, and other modes of cultural engagement," she said of her new role. "We are growing conference activity and the number of PhD students we supervise, and expanding our research base," she added. Professor Mendlesohn joins Anglia Ruskin from Middlesex University, where most recently she was reader in science fiction and fantasy literature. Prior to that, she held a teaching position at the University College of Ripon and York St John (now York St John University). She described her fields of study as important parts of literature, even though they have not always been held in high critical regard. "Although there are still people who scorn (science fiction) as lightweight ... most academics have grown up in a world where science fiction materials have filled their everyday lives, and the relevance of thinking forward has proved its value repeatedly." After studying for a BA in history at the University of York, she gained an MA in peace studies at the University of Bradford before returning to York to complete a doctorate in history.

University of Stirling

Jocelyn Prudence

The University of Stirling has named Jocelyn Prudence, the current chief executive of the Universities and Colleges Employers Association, its secretary and chief operating officer. "Having worked at Ucea for just over a decade and knowing that the organisation is in very good shape, I felt the time was right for a change," she said of her appointment. She added that the lifestyle change involved in moving to Scotland after 25 years commuting in and out of London was also very appealing. "It's most certainly a different office! The campus at Stirling is one of the most beautiful in the UK. The secretary's office overlooks a loch teeming with birds and wildlife, so it's very different from central London," she said. Ms Prudence began her career in industrial relations as a research officer at the Engineers' and Managers' Association, a trade union (now part of Prospect) that represented senior technical and managerial staff in the electricity industry and engineering. She has held leadership positions in membership bodies including the Association of Colleges, where she was director of employment, and the Chartered Society of Physiotherapy, where she served as director of industrial relations.

Middlesex University

Miranda Horvath

A Middlesex University academic has been appointed to a prestigious chair at the Royal College of Physicians. Miranda Horvath, senior lecturer and forensic psychology expert in the department of psychology, has been named to the David Jenkins Chair in forensic and legal medicine in the Royal College's Faculty of Forensic and Legal Medicine. Professor Horvath, who will continue in her position at Middlesex, said it was a "privilege to be approached for this vital role". She will undertake research linked to forensic and legal medicine and present the results at the faculty's next annual conference. She added that she hoped "to use this opportunity to conduct more research (and to) forge new research links and professional relationships". In addition, she wished "to disseminate findings from new and previous studies on the psychology of sexual violence that may be of interest to the faculty's members, (and) to bring a psychological perspective to the faculty". Professor Horvath studied for a BSc and an MSc at the University of Kent and completed her PhD at the University of Surrey. After holding a research fellowship at London Metropolitan University, she returned to Surrey as a lecturer in forensic psychology prior to moving to Middlesex.

Institute of Physics

Paul Hardaker

The Institute of Physics has named its new chief executive. Paul Hardaker, who is currently chief executive of the Royal Meteorological Society, brings "a wealth of experience in learned societies", according to Sir Peter Knight, the president of the institute. Professor Hardaker has been chief executive of the Royal Meteorological Society since 2006 and prior to that worked at the Met Office as chief adviser to the government and director for the organisation's development programmes. "I am delighted to be joining the Institute of Physics," he said of his appointment. "I feel very privileged to be working for an organisation that is so highly regarded and respected for its leadership, not just in physics but also more widely in the UK and international science community." A mathematician by background, he gained a first-class BSc and then a PhD from the University of Essex, where he remained to take up a senior research fellow position in the department of mathematics. He has also held visiting professorships at the universities of Salford and Reading.

Other changes

The Royal Irish Academy has elected 22 leading scholars to join the academy - the highest academic honour in Ireland. In the humanities and social sciences, the following have been elected: Catriona Crowe, National Archives of Ireland; Steven Ellis and Adrian Frazier, National University of Ireland, Galway; Roy Foster, University of Oxford; Robert Gerwarth and Richard Sinnott, University College Dublin; Liam Kennedy, Queen's University Belfast; Ullrich Kockel, University of Ulster; Daniel McCarthy, Trinity College Dublin; Geraldine Sheridan, University of Limerick, and Alan Titley, University College Cork. From the sciences, the following have been elected: Felix Aharonian and Denjoe O'Connor, Dublin Institute for Advanced Studies; Martin Curley, Intel Labs Europe; Patrick Lonergan and Peter Lynch, University College Dublin; Aaron Maule, John McGarvey and Stephen Smartt, Queen's University Belfast; John Pethica and Richard Reilly, Trinity College Dublin; and John McCloskey, University of Ulster.

Harry Scarbrough has been named the new director of Keele University's management school. Professor Scarbrough, who currently works at Warwick Business School, was previously a programme director at the Economic and Social Research Council.

Louise Jones, head of the University of Worcester's Institute of Health and Society, has been appointed to two influential external roles. Ms Jones has been made vice-president of the Chartered Society of Physiotherapy and also the England representative on the Council of Deans of Health executive.

The Association of University Administrators has named two new lay trustees: Trevor Faulkner, a training consultant and lecturer at a number of higher education institutions, and Tim Light, audit director and former president of the Association of Accounting Technicians.

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