Kent celebrates research excellence

Kent’s third annual Research Prizes took place on 21 April, with 16 awards handed out to staff in recognition of their accomplishments over the previous 12 months.

The awards recognised achievements such as publication in top-ranked journals, high citation rates, significant funding awards and impact through public engagement and policy development.

The ceremony was hosted by Professor Catherine Richardson from the School of English, and the awards were presented by the Pro-Vice-Chancellor for Research and Innovation Professor Philippe De Wilde during a gala dinner held at the Darwin Conference Suite at the University’s Canterbury campus.

Professor De Wilde commended the high quality of applications received and congratulated the winners on their success:

‘The nominations highlighted the diversity of research, and the impressive achievements for which Kent academics and students are responsible. Such excellence made selecting sixteen winners particularly difficult, and as well as congratulating the winners I would like to thank all those who put their work forward for consideration. It has shown me how much excellent work is being undertaken, how many publications and grants are being secured, and how many accolades are being won.’

The Research Prizes scheme has generated considerable interest across the University since its launch in 2014 and this year 44 applications from 13 of the University’s Schools were submitted.

Overall research prizes this year were awarded as follows:

  • The University Prize for Advanced Research – awarded to Professor Adrian Podoleanu (School of Physical Sciences) in recognition of outstanding achievements in developing the field of optical coherence tomography (OCT), founding a strong and successful research group. Professor Podoleanu’s record of internationally leading publications, patent protection and extensive grant income was also cited
  • The University Prize for Consolidator Research – awarded to Dr Zoe Davies (School of Anthropology and Conservation) in recognition of strong leadership, influential publications and an outstanding record in securing research income, allowing her to develop a cross-disciplinary area of research that has led to highly productive collaborations with economists, psychologists, sociologists, human geographers and engineers
  • The University Prize for Starting Research – awarded to Dr Beth Breeze (School of Social Policy, Sociology and Social Research) in recognition of her collective body of research in helping to found a new field of academic study in the UK focusing on the billion pound arena of philanthropy and charitable giving
  • The University Prize for Postgraduate Research – awarded to Dr Rebecca O’Connor (School of Biosciences) in recognition of an exceptional publication record, including a potential 4* publication, and achievements far beyond those normally expected of a doctoral student, including having a paper accepted by one of the most highly cited journals in the world,Genome Research.

SPS are lucky enough to not only have Professor Podoleanu win the overall Prize for Advanced Research, but also to have Dr Jennifer Hiscock be awarded the The Faculty of Sciences Prize for Starting Research. Congratulation to both of them, and to all the research prize winners!

Further details of all the prize-winners are available on the Research Prize website.

Article originally published on the University of Kent News Centre.