British academy

Latest News of Fellows

Professor Mary Beard, Professor of Classics at the University of Cambridge and Fellow of Newnham College, has been granted the 2016 Princess of Asturias Award for Social Sciences 'for her outstanding contribution to the study of Ancient Greco-Roman culture, politics and society'.
31 May 2016
The Wolfson History Prize has appointed Sir David Cannadine, dodge professor of history at Princeton, as the chair of judges for this year's award, and increased its prize money to a combined £60,000 (raised from £50,000 last year), split between two winners. In addition to Sir Cannadine the judges are; Professor Sir Richard Evans, FBA, president of Wolfson College, Cambridge; Professor Sir Diarmaid MacCulloch of the University of Oxford, FBA and Professor Julia Smith of the University of Glasgow. The ...
16 May 2016
In a four-part series on BBC 2, Mary Beard's Ultimate Rome: Empire Without Limit, Professor Mary Beard argues that the period of greatest Roman expansion occurred when Rome itself was little more than a provincial backwater.
28 Apr 2016
Professor Dominic Lieven, senior research fellow at Trinity College, Cambridge University has won the fourth annual Pushkin House Russian book prize for his work Towards the Flame: Empire, War and the end of Tsarist Russia (Penguin). His book, published by Penguin, was selected by a panel a five distinguished judges from a shortlist of six, including The end of the Cold War: 1985-1991, by Professor Robert Service, of St Anthony's College, Oxford.
26 Apr 2016
One of Britain’s leading historians and adult education pioneers, Lord Briggs, has died aged 94.Lord Briggs of Lewes led a long and varied life, having checked Winston Churchill’s book proofs for historical accuracy and worked alongside code breaker Alan Turing at Bletchley Park during the Second World War. He passed away peacefully on 15 March at his home in Lewes, East Sussex.   
16 Mar 2016
The Longlist for the Orwell Prize for Books 2016 has been announced. Among the nominees are: Professor John Kay, for Other People's Money (Profile Books),Dr Sudhir Hazareesingh, for How the French Think (Allen Lane). Professor Andrew Gamble is one of the judges for the Orwell Prize for Books 2016. The other judges are: Lord William Waldegrave, David Goodhart and Fiammetta Rocco. The Orwell Prize is awarded for political writing. It is awarded each year for the book which come closest to George Orwell's ambition to 'make political writing into an art'.
8 Mar 2016
In BBC One programme 'Pompeii: New Secrets Revealed' Professor Mary Beard brings new light to the secrets of the victims of the 79 AD eruption. With the help of CT scanning and x-ray equipment, Professor Beard explores the human stories behind the tragic figures - gladiators, slaves, businesswomen and children.
4 Mar 2016
Professor David Reynolds presents a two-part documentary about the battle of Verdun on BBC Radio 4. In the first episode of 'Verdun – The Sacred Wound,' Professor Reynolds explores Verdun 1916, France and Germany in a battle neither could lose. In the second episode, he examines how France marked the enormous sacrifice of the battle of Verdun.
17 Feb 2016
Most Reverend and Rt Hon Lord (Rowan) Williams gave The Charles Gore Lecture at Westminster Abbey on Monday 15 February. Called The Staying Power of Benedict in Parliament Square, the talk explored the idea that 'What changes politics in the long run is a sense of what viable shared forms of life look like that aren't just versions of the usual patterns of power and status.'
16 Feb 2016
Professor Carole Hillenbrand was a guest on Radio 4 programme 'Rumi's Poetry' which discussed the poetry of Rumi, the Persian scholar and Sufi mystic of the 13th Century. The programme was hosted by Melvyn Bragg.
12 Feb 2016
Professor Sir Christopher Clark is one of two new members of the Scientific Council of the European Research Council(ERC) recently appointed by the European Commission. The other newly elected member is Professor Barbara Romanowicz. The ERC Scientific Council, composed of 22 distinguished scientists and scholars representing the European scientific community, is the governing body of the European Research Council. Its main role is setting the ERC strategy and selecting the peer review evaluators.
8 Feb 2016
Schwarzman Scholars, the Master’s degree program at Tsinghua University in Beijing, has announced that Sir Nigel Thrift, the former Vice-Chancellor and President of the University of Warwick, has been appointed Executive Director
27 Jan 2016
Professor Christopher Clark has presented a five-part documentary series on the First World War. Broadcast on BBC Radio 4, The Ever Widening War is available to listen to on-line.
15 Jan 2016
Professor Geert Jan van Gelder has received, together with Professor Gregor Schoeler (University of Basel), the first prize of the Sheikh Hamad Award for Translation and International Understanding, category Arabic to English, for their translation of The Epistle of Forgiveness by the Syrian writer Abu l-Ala al-Ma`arri (d. 1057), which was published in two volumes, together with a new edition of the Arabic text, by New York University Press in 2013.
15 Dec 2015
British Academy President Lord Stern reflects on Saturday's historic Paris agreement on climate change in today's Financial Times. In the article he stresses the vital importance of public-private collaboration and rapidly scaling up worldwide investment in renewable energy technologies and infrastructure, and calls on governments worldwide to eliminate wasteful subsidies for fossil fuels and redirect some of this money into clean energy.
14 Dec 2015
Professor Ruth Finnegan's debut novel Black Inked Pearl has been published by Garn Press. Described as 'an epic romance about the naive Irish girl Kate and her mysterious lover, whom she rejects in panic and then spends her life seeking', the book is available on-line and in all good book shops.You can watch the Black Inked Pearl promotional video here.
8 Dec 2015
In an interview with the Daily Telegraph Professor Simon Baron-Cohen talks about the findings of a study of more than half a million people, carried out in partnership with Channel 4, into why more men than women have autistic traits. He also discusses the results of a further study exploring the link between high levels of testosterone  - including prenatal testosterone – and autistic traits, which suggest that the critical factor may be hormone levels rather than gender.
19 Nov 2015
Professor Per-Olof Wikström has been awarded the Stockholm Prize in Criminology by Stockholm University. The award has been given to the winners 'in recognition of their important joint advance in knowledge about how parents and peers shape successes, or failures, in preventing adult violence and crime'.The other winners are: Travis W. Hirschi, Emeritus Professor of Sociology at the University of Arizona, and Cathy Spatz Widom, Distinguished Professor of Psychology at the John Jay College of Criminal Justice and a member of the Graduate Center of the City University of New York.
10 Nov 2015
Professor Tim Besley has been elected Second Vice-President of the Econometric Society.  His election means that he will serve as President of the Econometric Society in 2018.The government has launched a National Infrastructure Commission (NIC) to oversee £100bn of spending on infrastructure projects. Professor Tim Besley will serve as one of the seven commissioners harged with producing a report at the start of each five-year Parliament.
3 Nov 2015
Professor Sarah Whatmore, Professor of Environment and Public Policy in the School of Geography and the Environment and Fellow of Keble College, University of Oxford, has been appointed as Academic Champion for Public Engagement with Research.
2 Nov 2015
Professor Angus Deaton is the 2015 winner of the Nobel prize in economics. The Scottish-born economist is best known for his work on health, wellbeing, and economic development.His book, The Great Escape: Health, Wealth and the Origins of Inequality, argues that a more sophisticated analysis of economic data shows that while most people in the world have gained in terms of health and wellbeing from GDP growth, there are many groups that have missed out.Professor Deaton, was born in Edinburgh ...
12 Oct 2015
Professors Jonathan Bate and Robert Gildea are among the 12 authors selected for The Samuel Johnson Prize 2015 longlist.Professor Bate has been nominated for 'Ted Hughes: The Unauthorised Life' (William Collins) and Professor Gildea for 'Fighters in the Shadows: A New History of the French Resistance' (Faber & Faber).The Samuel Johnson Prize for Non-Fiction is for non-fiction books, covering subjects from current affairs, history, politics, science, sport, travel, biography, autobiography and the arts. The 2015 Prize shortlist will be announced on Sunday 11 October. A Samuel Johnson Prize 2015 Shortlist Event will be held at the British Academy on 27 October. ...
22 Sep 2015
Professor Simon Baron-Cohen, director of the Autism Research Centre at Cambridge University and vice-president of the National Autistic Society, has appeared on BBC Radio 4's Today programme to talk about the waiting times facing people seeking diagnosis of autism.
1 Sep 2015
Former British Academy President, Sir Adam Roberts, has completed a cycle ride from Land's End to John o'Groats (LE JoG), by an extended 1,200-mile route taking in the Outer Hebrides. The 24-day journey with his daughter Hannah celebrated his 75th birthday. It is the third time he has cycled LE JoG in his seventies.
28 Aug 2015
Professor Uta Frith meets the people living with OCD, looks at the therapy available and asks what neuroscience can offer by way of a cure, in BBC 2's Horizon programme OCD: A Monster in my Mind
27 Aug 2015
Professor Andrew Wallace-Hadrill presents BBC2 series Building the Ancient City: Athens and Rome.In the first episode, Professor Andrew Wallace-Hadrill takes the viewer on a journey to find out how Athens gave birth to the idea of a city run by free citizens 2,500 years ago. In the second episode he explains how the Romans make their their great city work.
24 Aug 2015
Commenting on the shortfall of 5,500 maths teachers for secondary schools in England, Professor Sir Ian Diamond has written in a letter to The Times that 'the issue is about quality as well as quantity.'  He goes on to say that in addition to teacher recruitment and retention, the government must focus on the quality of teachers' skills, alongside a 'continuous review of the maths curriculum.'Read the whole letter here: How to solve the shortage of maths teachers
21 Aug 2015
Former British Academy President, Sir Anthony Kenny has written an article for the London Evening Standard newspaper called 'We have learned the lessons of Hiroshima but can't be complacent'. 
7 Aug 2015
Lord Hennessy of Nympsfield asks senior politicians to reflect on their lives and times in the latest BBC Radio 4 series of Reflections with Peter Hennessy.
27 Jul 2015
Professor Bishop has appeared on BBC Radio 4's programme The Life Scientific. Since the 1970s, she has been instrumental in bringing to light Specific Language Impairment (SLI), a little-known language disorder that may affect around two children per class starting primary school. Professor Bishop spoke to Jim Al-Khalili about how families react when they discover there's a genetic basis to their problems, and why SLI isn't as well known as other conditions, like autism and dyslexia.You can listen to The Life Scientific featuring Dorothy Bishop here
8 Jul 2015
Nine Fellows of the British Academy are honoured in The Queen's Birthday Honours List for 2015. The British Academy's Vice-President for Public Engagement, Professor Vicki Bruce, Professor of Psychology at Newcastle University, has been made a Dame Commander of the Order of the British Empire (DBE) for services to Higher Education and Psychology. The Right Honourable the Lord Harry Woolf (Honorary FBA),  has been made a Companion of Honour for services to the public and community relations. The following Fellows have received Knighthoods:  Christopher Clark, Regius Professor of History at Cambridge University, for services to British German relations. Dr ...
15 Jun 2015
Business leaders, cities and young people should be placing more pressure on world leaders to create 'political tipping points' for action on climate change, says Lord Stern of Brentford in 'Why Are We Waiting? The logic, urgency and promise of tackling climate change' published today (3 June 2015) by MIT Press.Lord Stern is President of the British Academy, Chair of the Grantham Research Institute on Climate Change and the Environment, Chair of the ESRC Centre for Climate Change Economics and Policy, and I.G. Patel Professor of Economics ...
3 Jun 2015
Professor Christopher Prendergast , University of Cambridge, has been elected as a Foreign Honorary Member by the American Academy of Arts and Sciences.The American Academy is a champion of scholarship, civil dialogue and useful knowledge. Its membership includes over 4,600 Fellows and 600 Foreign Honorary Members.
1 Jun 2015
Neil MacGregor has been awarded the Friedrich Gundolf Prize by the German Academy for Language and Literature.Neil MacGregor, Director of the British Museum, was presented with the "Friedrich-Gundolf-Preis für die Vermittlung deutscher Kultur im Ausland" (Friedrich-Gundolf-Prize for furthering the understanding of German culture abroad) for his recent exhibition at the British Museum "Germany: Memories of a Nation".The jury commended Neil MacGregor on the bold and nuanced view of German history over six centuries and the President of the Goethe-Institut Professor Klaus-Dieter Lehmann made a speech in Neil MacGregor’s honour.
14 May 2015
Conquests, Catastrophe and Recovery: Britain and Ireland 1066-1485 by Professor John Gillingham has been published by Vintage.In the review in the March 2015 edition of BBC History magazine, it was said that, 'no other single volume offers so comprehensive a consideration of the geography, economy, politics, society and religion of medieval Britain in so engaging and accessible a fashion.'John Gillingham is Emeritus Professor of History at the London School of Economics and Political Science and a Fellow of the British Academy. His books include Richard I (1999), The English in the Twelfth Century: Imperialism, National Identity and Political Values (2000) ...
12 May 2015
Nicholas Stern has been elected a Member of the American Philosophical Society (APS). The APS promotes useful knowledge in the sciences and humanities through excellence in scholarly research, professional meetings, support of young scholars, publications, library resources, a museum and community outreach.Nicholas Stern was elected to the APS in the Social Sciences – International class.
28 Apr 2015
Baron Skidelsky's historical study Britain Since 1900 - A Success Story? has been published by Vintage. It is an analysis of the century in which Britain lost an empire, fought two world wars, founded the welfare state and weathered economic turbulence and technological upheaval.Robert Skidelsky is Emeritus Professor of Political Ecomony at Warwick University.
27 Apr 2015
The Learned Society of Wales has announced the results of its 2015 Election of new Fellows, which includes:Professor Colin Jones,Professor Sir Geoffrey Lloyd,Professor Carole Pateman.The Learned Society of Wales (LSW) is as an independent, all-Wales, bilingual, self-governing, pan-discipline educational charity, to provide public benefit including the recognition of scholarly excellence, promotion of research and provision of expert, independent, scholarly advice on a variety of public policy issues.
24 Apr 2015
Professor Simon Hix took part in a panel discussion following the opposition leaders' debate. The event was organised by British Government @ LSE - an initiative to promote and develop research on British Government being conducted at the LSE. You can listen to Election: The Opposition Leaders' Debate panel discussion at LSE here.
20 Apr 2015
Professor Adam Kuper is a judge of the Thinking Allowed Award for Ethnography, which is given to those who have made a significant contribution to ethnography, the in-depth analysis of the everyday life of a culture or sub culture. He recently took part in Radio 4's Thinking Allowed programme which discussed the award short list. One of the contenders, Flip-flop: A Journey through Globalisation's Backroads, is by Caroline Knowles. Professor Knowles received a Small Research Grant in 2007 for her research on this subject, and was published in the British Academy Review in 2009. ...
20 Apr 2015
Lord Renfrew of Kaimsthorn said the world had watched in horror as Isis militants destroyed ancient artefacts in Iraq. Yet, he said, Britain 'dithered' rather than join other countries in ratifying the Convention for the Protection of Cultural Property in the Event of Armed Conflict, which was adopted at The Hague in 1954.Lord Stern of Brentford, President of the British Academy, was one of the signatories of a letter published by The Telegraph,  ...
20 Apr 2015
Professor Anthony Atkinson’s new book, Inequality: What can be done? has been published by Harvard UP. He is interviewed about it in Prospect magazine.
10 Apr 2015
Neil MacGregor has announced he is to step down as director of the British Museum.Since joining in 2002, MacGregor has been credited with reforming the British Museum's one-time "stuffy" image to make it one of the world's most visited attractions.
9 Apr 2015
Baroness Onora O'Neill, British Academy President 2005-2009, has been appointed to the new Banking Standards Board. Set up in the wake of a review by former CBI chief executive Sir Richard Lambert last year, the board has been selected to help win back the public's trust in the banking sector. The 14-strong group includes nine non-practitioners and five representatives from the sector, lead by Dame Colette Bowe, former chair of regulator Ofcom.Dame Colette said: "The new Banking Standards Board is made up of expert and committed people, a cross section of civil society and professional expertise, all determined to shine ...
2 Apr 2015
Professor Peter Burke has delivered the 2015 Jerusalem Lectures in History in Memory of Menahem Stern, from 22 March - 2 April.In 1993, the Historical Society of Israel established a lecture series in memory of Prof. Menahem Stern, one of the most renowned historians of Jewish history of the Second Temple period.The lectures are delivered in English and are intended for Israeli historians, scholars in various fields, students, teachers, and the general public. During their stay, the guest speaker meets with doctoral students from all of Israel’s universities.
31 Mar 2015
The British Academy's Foreign Secretary, Professor Dame Helen Wallace, has been appointed as a member of the British Library's governing board for a four-year term. She is one of six new board members named today by the Secretary of State for Culture, Media and Sport. 
30 Mar 2015
The Economic and Social Research Council has announced five projects to strengthen its portfolio of high-quality research on important issues facing society.Among the projects announced are The Centre for the Microeconomic Analysis of Public Policy (CPP), led by Professor Sir Richard Blundell, and the Centre for Economic Performance (CEP) led by Professor John Van Reenen.
27 Mar 2015
Rt Hon Lord Woolf, former Lord Chief Justice who led the inquiry into Britain's biggest prison riot, is calling for a new inquiry into the state of UK jails.Lord Woolf says conditions in prisons are now as bad as they were in 1990, when a dramatic siege at Strangeways went on for 25 days.Two people died and hundreds were injured in a protest against a prison regime that included "slopping out".Lord Woolf said Britain was again "heading for a crisis within prisons".
23 Mar 2015
The Academy warmly congratulates Professor Sir Geoffrey Lloyd, Emeritus Professor of Ancient Philosophy and Science at the University of Cambridge, on the award of the prestigious Prix International from the Fondation Fyssen. The theme of this year's prize was "cognition et variation culturelle" and Sir Geoffrey was awarded the prize, worth 60,000 euros, at a ceremony in Paris on 20 March.   Further information on the prize can be found online.  
20 Mar 2015
Professor Julian Birkinshaw has been elected as a fellow of the Academy of Social Sciences.Julian Birkinshaw is Professor and Chair of Strategy and Entrepreneurship at the London Business School.The Academy of Social Sciences is the National Academy of Academics, Learned Societies and Practitioners in the Social Sciences. 
16 Mar 2015

show stories for previous years