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AHSS nominees

Winners 2023

Dr Babak Jahanshahi | Research Award - Winner

Queen's Business School

"I am nominating Dr Babak Jahanshahi because he has consistently demonstrated outstanding research performance in an area of critical societal importance. As part of the UKRI-funded Administrative Data Research Centre NI team researching the health impacts of air pollution, Babak has led research into the impacts of air pollution on Parkinson’s disease and has substantially contributed to the wider research and engagement activities of the team. His recent work on air pollution and mortality on the island of Ireland attracted substantial media and policy interest both north and south of the border. His submission to the UK Parliament Environmental Audit Committee consultation on air quality targets was reflected in many of the points subsequently raised by committee members. As associate supervisor he has also been instrumental in supporting the development of PhD research on air pollution and childhood asthma. His work has substantially strengthened the likelihood of obtaining continuing UKRI funding for the programme into the next funding period and has helped to lay strong foundations for a potentially excellent REF2028 impact case study. He is a pleasure to work with and an invaluable member of the research team."

Dr Amanda Slevin | Citizenship and Outreach Award - Winner

School of History, Anthropology, Philosophy and Politics

"I am nominating Dr Amanda Slevin for a Citizenship and Outreach award for her work on multi-level climate action and sustainability within and beyond Queen’s University Belfast."

Highly commended 2022

Commendations were made by the judging panel for categories with higher numbers of nominations.

Dr Lisa Whitten | Research Award - Commended

School of History, Anthropology, Philosophy and Politics

"Dr Lisa Whitten’s post-doctoral research on the Post-Brexit Governance NI project has established her as the leading academic authority on the multi-faceted regulatory implications for Northern Ireland of Brexit and the Protocol on Ireland/Northern Ireland. No one else has undertaken such rigorous work monitoring and analysing the unprecedented regulatory position for Northern Ireland, being both in the UK internal market and partially in the EU’s single market. Dr Whitten’s work on regulatory alignment under the Protocol has been drawn upon by senior officials in the UK and Irish governments and the European Commission, as well as recognised within the academic community. Her analysis and advice has shaped the work of parliamentary committees in all jurisdictions of the UK as they seek to comprehend and scrutinise the implications of the Protocol and now the Windsor Framework. What makes Dr Whitten exceptional is her ability to explain these very complex legal and constitutional matters in an accessible and applicable way to a wide range of audiences, from grassroots community groups to international ambassadorial delegations. Through written papers, explainers, invited presentations, commissioned reports and regular briefings, Dr Whitten has deepened understanding of the Protocol among those most directly responsible for managing its effects."

Dr Rebecca Loader | Research Award - Commended

School of Social Sciences, Education and Social Work

"Dr Rebecca Loader is an exceptional researcher whose research contributions over the past year have been outstanding, most notably as PI on a Nuffield Foundation funded study of education among minority ethnic groups in NI. At the launch of the report in June 2023 to an audience of 90 delegates, it was described by a senior academic as a ‘landmark study’. The potential impact of this research is recognisably significant, with The Executive Office and the All-Party Group on Ethnic Minority Communities inviting Dr Loader to present the research to them. 

Rebecca’s further outstanding research this year include: co-authoring a report on cuts to education in NI, for which she was awarded an ESRC Impact Acceleration Award; publishing a peer-reviewed article on academic selection with Professor Hughes, and being interviewed on BBC Radio Ulster; submitting two further peer-reviewed publishable articles; and appointment as co-editor on a high-ranking journal special issue on education and migration. Furthermore, Rebecca was awarded funding as CI for a major study of the Transformation process in Integrated Schools and shortlisted for another Nuffield Foundation grant to examine academic selection in NI. Rebecca’s work this year makes her a truly outstanding candidate for the AHSS Research Award."

Dr Alex Lucas | Citizenship and Outreach Award - Commended

School of History, Anthropology, Philosophy and Politics

"I am delighted to nominate Dr Alex Lucas for this award, in recognition to his multiple contributions to the postdoctoral and PhD student communities over the past year. Alex’s attitude is consistently positive, supportive and kind to his colleagues, and he doesn’t hesitate to put himself forward to benefit others. Alex joined the newly created institutional Postdoc Society as co-Chair in December, and the group of approximately 20 volunteers has gone to deliver a range of successful events, bringing the postdoctoral community closer together and promoting networking across Schools. In addition to his coordinating role, he has been closely involved in delivering specific Postdoc Society events such as the first networking event, and is organising a Summer Social. Alex has also demonstrated a keen interest in supporting the next generation of researchers, by engaging with his School, the PDC and the Graduate School to share his experience and mentor PhD candidates at multiple events. I believe Alex’s collegial approach undoubtedly contributes to the creation of a positive research culture and environment for early career researchers and make him an asset to the University."

All nominees 2023

Research award

Babak Jahanshahi (Centre for Health Research, Queen's Business School)

Frances Kane (School of Arts, English and Languages)

Lisa Whitten (School of History, Anthropology, Philosophy and Politics) - Nominated by 3 individuals

Meral Koldas (School of Social Sciences, Education and Social Work)

Rebecca Loader (School of Social Sciences, Education and Social Work) - Nominated by 2 individuals

Ruth Duffy (School of Arts, English and Languages)

Stefano Angeleri (School of Law)

Citizenship and Outreach award

Alex Lucas (School of Arts, English and Languages)

Amanda Slevin (School of History, Anthropology, Philosophy and Politics)

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