New fellows and Academic Visitors at Balliol 2004/05

Friday 22 October

A large number of new Fellows and academic visitors are to be at Balliol during the 2004/05 academic year. They are as follows:

Dr Peter Kohl - Tutorial Fellow in Biomedical Sciences

Peter Kohl, MD (Berlin), PhD (Moscow), formerly a Research Fellow and Tutor in Physiology at Keble College, joins Balliol as a Royal Society Research Fellow, Reader in Cardiac Physiology, and Head of the Cardiac Mechano-Electric Feedback Lab in the Laboratory of Physiology at Oxford University. His research focuses on the mechanical modulation of cardiac electrical activity, and, consequently, heart rate and rhythm. The benefit of this research is that it may open up the prospect of developing alternative approaches to cardiac rhythm management. The Laboratory works closely with the BHF Chair for Cardiovascular Physiology, also an Emeritus Fellow of Balliol, Professor Denis Noble, and has close links with experimental and modelling teams in Auckland, Boston, Ekaterinburg, Heidelberg, New Orleans and San Diego. He has published extensively. He is the Coordinating Editor of the first textbook on Cardiac Mechano-Electrical Feedback, a reviewer of major international journals, and he has organised many national and international meetings and symposia. He is the Vice-Chair of the MRC Cooperative Group on Cardiovascular Metabolic Electrophysiology, a member of the Steering Committee of the ECC Cardiac Cell Electrophysiology Group, and serves on the Grants and Membership Committee of the Physiological Society.

Dr André Lukas - Tutorial Fellow in Physics

André Lukas, PhD (Technical University of Munich), formerly Reader in Theoretical Physics at the University of Sussex and Postdoctoral Fellow at the University of Oxford, joins Balliol as the new Tutorial Fellow in Physics. His main research interest is in theoretical high-energy physics and its relation to cosmology, specifically string- and M-theory. M-theory is the leading candidate for a fundamental unifying theory of all known forces in nature including gravity, which makes this a particularly exciting area of research. Most of his work is dealing with the “phenomenology” of M-theory models, that is, with the problem of relating M-theory to low-energy particle physics and early universe cosmology. Particularly interesting in this direction is the “brane-world” idea, which can be explicitly realized in the context of M-theory. In a brane-world model, all the elementary particles and their interactions as described by the standard model of particle physics are located on a three-brane (a 3+1-dimensional extended object). This three-brane is embedded in a higher-dimensional space-time that is “seen” by gravity only. An example for such a model is provided by a domain-wall carrying the standard model fields that is embedded in a five-dimensional space-time. His publications in this field range from phenomenological topics such as formal aspects of string theory, and he is the author of more than fifty research papers in leading international journals.

Dr Sophie Marnette - Tutorial Fellow in Modern Languages (French)

Sophie Marnette, PhD (Berkeley, California) joins Balliol as the new tutor in French. She is also University Lecturer in Medieval French at Oxford. A native French speaker from Belgium, she was educated in both Europe and the United States. Her research offers a linguistic and philological approach to literary issues such as the origins and evolution of medieval literary genres, the expression of narrative voice and points of view, the relationship between history and fiction, etc. Her first book, Narrateur et points de vue dans la litérature française mediévale: Une approche linguistique (Peter Lang, 1998) focuses on storytelling in the French Middle Ages, and her second and upcoming book Speech and Thought in French: Concepts and Strategies (Benjamins, 2005) studies reported discourse in medieval literary texts as well as in contemporary oral narratives, written press and literature. She has lectured on French literature, modern linguistics and the history of the French language at various universities including the University of California at Los Angeles, the University of St. Andrews, the Université Libre de Bruxelles, the University of Cambridge and Harvard University.

Dr Sebastian Shimeld - Tutorial Fellow in Zoology

Sebastian Shimeld, PhD (Manchester) joins Balliol as the new tutor in Zoology. His previous appointment was as a Lecturer in Zoology at the University of Reading. His research interests focus on the evolution of the mechanisms controlling embryonic development, and he has published various articles on this topic, including studies on the evolution of sensory organs, on the elaboration of the nervous system and on the development of asymmetric differences between the left and right sides of animal bodies. Recent works include Evolutionary Aspects of Vertebrate Patterning in Patterning in Vertebrate Development: Frontiers in Molecular Biology, ed. Tickle (OUP, 2003). A regular reviewer of publications in his field, he has also given talks and seminars at various UK and international meetings. He was Reading University’s programme adviser and coordinator for the School’s largest degree course, Biological Sciences, and, among the various activities involved, he ran a yearly field course in Marine Biology.

Dr Rosalind Thomas - Tutorial Fellow in Ancient History

Rosalind Thomas, PhD (University College, London) joins Balliol as the new tutor in Ancient History. She was formerly Professor of Greek History at the Royal Holloway and Bedford New College, University of London. Her research interests are in Greek historiography, Greek political, social and cultural history, Greek law – written and oral law, the history of literacy and orality, and 5th century intellectual history, sophistic and early medical writers. The most recent of the three books she has published is Herodotus in Context: Ethnography, Science and the Art of Persuasion (2000). She has held membership of a panel of the Danish National Research Council to assess the progress of three Humanities Research Centres, and also a UNESCO-sponsored workshop on literacy and social development. Since 2001 she has been involved in an interdisciplinary project on Literature and Performance at the SOAS/UCL AHRB Centre for the Study of African and Asian Literatures, which was initiated partly to develop approaches to and interpretations of non-Western literature not dominated by Western literary criticism. This has led her to chair several workshops forming a major investigation into performance literature, performance culture and the relation between performance, society and written text, which, in turn, has led to a collaborative volume of essays, for publication as a book, entitled Performance Literature and Writing: Lost in Transcription?

Dr Rochana Bajpai – Junior Research Fellow in Politics

Rochana Bajpai, MPhil (St Catherine’s College, Oxford), DPhil (Nuffield College, Oxford), formerly Anna Biegun Warburg Junior Research Fellow in Human and Social Sciences at St Anne’s College, Oxford, joins Balliol as the University’s Post-Doctoral Research Fellow in the Centre for Political Ideologies, which she will hold in conjunction with a Junior Research Fellowship in Politics at Balliol. Her research interests encompass theories of group rights and liberal democracy; ideological approaches to the study of politics; and political ideologies in non-Western contexts. Her post-doctoral project focuses on the relationship of group representation and democratic norms. The extent to which political institutions are representative of groups such as women and ethnic minorities is a key concern of contemporary democratic theory and practice. Her research will bring together the empirical and theoretical literature on group representation in order to systematize the different types of democratic arguments they offer in favour of group political representation. She has published articles and conference and seminar papers, and plans to revise her doctoral thesis, ‘Legitimating Vocabulary of Group Rights in Contemporary India’ into a book. She is also an experienced University Politics teacher, lecturer and course provider.

Dr David Lucas – Junior Research Fellow in Physics

David Lucas, DPhil (Christ Church, Oxford) and Royal Society University Research Fellow in Physics at the Centre for Quantum Computation, University of Oxford, joins Balliol as a Junior Research Fellow in Physics. His areas of research are Quantum Computation & Information Processing, Ion Trapping, Laser Cooling & Trapping and Parity-Violation & Symmetry Violation. He proposes to spend his Fellowship here focusing on a new idea, experimental quantum computation using multiple small ion traps. During his research career he has given numerous presentations on his work at conferences, workshops and other universities at home and abroad. The field of quantum computing, especially, also attracts wider interest - the Centre’s project has been covered by The Independent on Sunday and Channel 4 News, for example - and he has written popular articles on the subject, given talks to undergraduates and sixth-formers, and represented the Centre’s work at the SET “Taking Science to Westminster” initiative.

Dr Kate McLoughlin – Junior Research Fellow in English

Kate McLoughlin, MPhil (St John’s, Cambridge), DPhil (Somerville College, Oxford), ARCM, LGSM, joins Balliol as a Junior Research Fellow in English. After undergraduate studies in English and a Master’s in Renaissance Literature from she qualified as a barrister and worked for the Government Legal Service for seven years, with stints at the European Commission in Brussels, the Conseil D’État in Paris and the Office of the Parliamentary Counsel. In 2001, she followed her vocation back to academic English, completing her DPhil, ‘Martha Gellhorn: the War writer in the Field and in the Text’. She plans to use her time at Balliol to convert her thesis into a book, and to continue her research and teaching interests in 20th century British and American literature and the representation of war. During the academic year 2004-5 she will also hold a Visiting Fellowship at the Rothermere American Institute and the Smith- Reynolds Fellowship awarded by the Ernest Hemingway Foundation.

Professor Peter Evans - George Eastman Visiting Professor (Sociology)

Peter Evans, PhD (Harvard) is Professor of Sociology at the University of California, Berkeley, where he holds the Marjorie Meyer Eliaser Chair of International Studies. His research interests focus on the comparative political economy of development. His earlier work was on the role of the state in industrial development, an interest reflected in his book Embedded Autonomy: States and Industrial Transformation (Princeton University Press, 1995). He is also interested in urban environmental issues, as indicated by the recent edited volume, Livable Cities: Urban Struggles for Livelihood and Sustainability (University of California Press, 2002). He is currently studying the labor movement as a global social movement, and during the academic year he will spend at Balliol he hopes to complete a draft of his current book on the subject, Outwitting Accumulation: Re-Inventing Development in an Age of Globalization. He will spend the academic year 2004-5 at Balliol.

Professor Kevin Burrage - Visiting Fellow and Oliver Smithies Lecturer (Computer Sciences)

Kevin Burrage (PhD Auckland) is a Federation Fellow of the Australian Research Council, Co-Director of the Advanced Computational Modelling Centre at the University of Queensland and founding CEO of the Queensland Parallel Supercomputing Foundation. He has co-authored over 130 papers in Computational Science, mathematical modelling and complex systems. This oeuvre consists of work on the numerical solution of Ordinary Differential and Stochastic Differential Equations, biological modelling and simulation, parallel computing, visualisation and algorithms for linear systems. He was awarded the Federal Government Technology Productivity Gold Award in 1994 for work in visualisation of natural resource and high performance computing in drought modelling. He will spend Michaelmas Term 2004 and Hilary Term 2005 at Balliol, and will be delivering two Oliver Smithies Lectures between late November/early December this year.

Dr Timothy Lane – Visiting Fellow and Oliver Smithies Lecturer (Economics)

Tim Lane, PhD (Western Ontario) will be visiting Balliol from the International Monetary Fund (IMF). As Assistant Director in the IMF’s Policy Development and Review Department, he has led work on various analytical and policy issues related to IMF-supported programs, including the design of IMF-supported programs, conditionality, the IMF’s role in emerging market crises (notably the 1997-98 East Asia crisis and the 2001-02 Argentine crisis), debt sustainability, and foreign aid. He has published over 200 working papers and articles in professional journals and is a member of the American Economic Association and the Canadian Economics Association. During his visit, he will be carrying out research on the role of the IMF. This will focus specifically on three topics: the hypothesis that IMF financing results in moral hazard, IMF conditionality as a signaling device, and the management of capital account crises. He will be spending the academic year 2004-5 at Balliol, and in Michaelmas Term 2004 he will deliver a series of Oliver Smithies Lectures on the role of the IMF and the directions for reform.

Professor Joseph Nye – Visiting Fellow and Oliver Smithies Lecturer (Political Science)

Joseph Nye, PhD (Harvard) is Distinguished Service Professor at Harvard University. After graduating from Princeton University he attended Oxford as a Rhodes Scholar. He joined the Harvard faculty in 1964 and was Dean of the Kennedy School of Government from 1995 to 2004. He took leave from Harvard to serve in three government agencies as Deputy Undersecretary of State (1977-79), Director of the National Intelligence Council (1993-94), and Assistant Secretary of Defense (1994-1995). He won distinguished honour awards from all three. He is the recipient of the Arthur Merriam Award from the American Political Science Association and the Woodrow Wilson Award from Princeton University for distinguished public service. He is a Fellow of the American Academy of Arts and Sciences and the American Academy of Diplomacy. He is the author of ten books and more than a hundred articles in professional and policy journals. His latest publications are Soft Power: the Means to Success in World Politics and Understanding International Conflict (5th edition), both published in 2004. He will spend Hilary Term and Trinity Terms 2005 at Balliol, and will deliver an Oliver Smithies Lecture during his stay.

Professor Tony Leggett - Oliver Smithies Lecturer (Physics) 

Tony Leggett, who gained his BA in Literae Humaniores at Balliol in 1955, is the John D and Catherine T MacArthur Professor and Center for Advanced Study Professor of Physics at the University of Illinois, where he has been a faculty member since 1983. He is widely recognised as a world leader in the theory of low-temperature physics, and was awarded the 2003 Nobel Prize in Physics for his pioneering work on superfluidity. He has shaped the theoretical understanding of normal and superfluid helium liquids and other strongly coupled superfluids, and set directions for research in the quantum physics of macroscopic dissipative systems and use of condensed systems to test the foundations of quantum mechanics. His research interests lie mainly within the fields of theoretical condensed matter physics and the foundations of quantum mechanics and he has been particularly interested in the possibility of using special condensed-matter systems. He is also interested in the theory of superfluid liquid 3. He is a member of the National Academy of Sciences, the American Philosophical Society, the American Academy of Arts and Sciences, the Russian Academy of Sciences (foreign member), and is a Fellow of the Royal Society (UK) the American Physical Society, and the American Institute of Physics, and an Honorary Fellow of the Institute of Physics (UK). He will deliver an Oliver Smithies Lecture at Balliol in the Spring of 2005.

Professor Christopher Ricks - Oliver Smithies Lecturer (English)

Christopher Ricks obtained his undergraduate degree in English at Balliol in 1953. Formerly Professor of English at the University of Cambridge and the University of Bristol, he is Warren Professor of Humanities at Boston University, Co-Director of the Editorial Institute at Boston University, and a member of the Association of Literary Scholars and Critics. Christopher’s interests focus on the English poets including Milton, Tennyson, AE Housman and TS Eliot. He is the author of Milton’s Grand Style (1963), Tennyson (second edition, 1989), Keats and Embarrassment (1974), The Force of Poetry (1984), T.S. Eliot and Prejudice (1988), Beckett’s Dying Words (1993), Essays in Appreciation (1996), Allusion to the Poets (2002), and Reviewery (2003). He is also the editor of Poems of Tennyson (second edition, 1987), The New Oxford Book of Victorian Verse (1987), A.E. Housman: Collected Poems and Selected Prose (1988), Inventions of the March Hare: Poems 1909–1917 by T.S. Eliot (1996), The Oxford Book of English Verse (1999), Selected Poems of James Henry (2002), and Decisions and Revisions in T.S. Eliot (2003). More recently, his works include an examination of the lyrics of Bob Dylan entitled Dylan’s Visions of Sin. He is Professor of Poetry at Oxford University, where he will deliver his first lecture in Michaelmas Term 2004. He will also give two Oliver Smithies Lectures at Balliol in February 2005.

Professor Roger Louis - Leonard Stein Lecturer (History)

William Roger Louis CBE, MA (Harvard), DPhil (Oxford), has been a member of the University of Texas, Austin since 1970 and holds the Kerr Chair in English History and Culture. He is also member of the University of Texas Academy of Distinguished Teachers and director of the faculty seminar on British Studies. His award-winning teaching style and carefully chronicled books have illuminated the history of the British Empire and the origins of both World Wars for over 30 years. A Visiting Fellow of All Souls College, Oxford, he has authored several books, edited or co-edited some 20 volumes, and published over 50 articles. His books include the prize-winning Imperialism at Bay (1976) and The British Empire in the Middle East (1984). He is also the editor-in-chief of the five-volume Oxford History of the British Empire. He has carried out historiography and archival research in Britain and throughout the world, as well as comparative study of colonialism in Africa, Asia, and the Middle East. He has been the recipient of many academic honours in Britain and the United States, and served as President of the American Historical Association in 2001. Over the past six years he has been working on a book that reassesses the significance of the Suez crisis in the history of the British Empire, and he will be giving a series of three Leonard Stein Lectures on this topic at Balliol in 2004-5.

Professor Peter Fisher - MIT Visitor (Physics)

Peter Fisher, PhD (California Institute of Technology) comes to Balliol from the Physics Faculty at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology, where he is Professor of Physics and Division Head of Particle and Nuclear Experimental Physics. He also comes under the MIT Exchange Scheme. He is primarily involved in the Alpha Magnetic Spectrometer (AMS) experiment, which will make high precision measurements of cosmic rays and search Dark Matter in our galaxy. Over the past decade measurements of photons emitted 300,000 years after the beginning of the universe and measurements of distance supernovas have revealed 23% of the matter in the universe is not protons, neutrons, electrons, photons or neutrinos; we do not know what it is. This 23% is referred to as dark matter as it does not radiate or absorb light. From measurements of the motion of stars in galaxies, it is believed that dark matter concentrates in galaxies and may be directly measurable in very sensitive experiments. Other current interests also include development of new particle detectors and embedding processors in detector systems. He has published extensively, holds various positions on review panels such as the National Science Foundation Special Emphasis on Experimental Particle Physics, and is also Editor of the International Journal of Modern Physics A, and Modern Physics Letters A. He will be staying at Balliol from February to May 2005.

Professor Mary Fuller - MIT Visitor (English)

Mary Fuller, PhD (Johns Hopkins) comes to Balliol from the Literature Faculty at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology under the MIT Exchange Scheme. She is currently preparing two manuscripts for publication, one on the work of the late 16th century editor Richard Hakluyt in collecting and publishing accounts of English travel outside Europe, the other a series of studies in the ways such accounts were shaped by the individual and national interests associated with them. Her research focuses on nonfictional accounts of travel and cultural contact in the early modern period, an area in which she has published both an earlier book and a number of essays. She recently became a member of the editorial board of Studies in Travel Writing. Voyages in Print: English Travel to America, 1576-1624. The topics of some of her articles range from the English discovery of Guiana, seventeenth century colonies in Newfoundland, male sociability and conversion to Islam, and historical memory and the Jamestown colony. She proposes to carry out further research on Richard Hakluyt during her stay at Balliol in Michaelmas Term 2004.