Four academics from the University of Sydney have been recognised for their achievements with election to the Australian Academy of the Humanities, the highest honour for achievement in the humanities in Australia.
The new fellows are experts in the areas of history and philosophy of science, Latin literature, and gender and cultural studies.
History and Philosophy of Science
Associate Professor Hans Pols from the School of History and Philosophy of Science has been honoured for his pre-eminent position as an historian of science and medicine in Indonesia and a leading international scholar of the development of global psychiatry. His historical research is distinguished by its meticulous attention to the agency and authorship of local figures who took up and creatively adapted European science and medicine.
“No scholar internationally has done more than Pols to decentre the colonisers in histories of colonial science and medicine, and to counter simple diffusionist narratives of the globalization of science and medicine,” the AAH citation says.
Also elected is Professor Evelleen Richards, whose studies in the contextual history of evolutionary biology are internationally regarded as offering a major advance in the understanding and interpretation of the scientific and medical past.
Her book Darwin and the Making of Sexual Selection won the Suzanne J. Levinson Prize in 2018 and in January 2020 she was awarded the Royal Society of NSW History and Philosophy of Science Medal.
Gender and Cultural Studies
Associate Professor Kane Race has been elected due to his contribution to cultural studies of sexuality, interactions between stigmatised bodies, sexuality and the politics of public health. Associate Professor Race has been published widely on the impact of HIV antiretroviral therapies on gay cultures, practices and politics.
His work has explored embodied engagements with medicine across various different contexts and cultures of consumption, and his current work is concerned with the ways in which online devices and technologies participate in the making of new cultures, spaces and practices.
Associate Professor Paul Roche from the Department of Classics and Ancient History has been honoured for his contribution to studies in the areas of Roman literature, politics and culture in the First Century AD. Associate Professor Roche has been an academic in the field for nearly 20 years and been published more than 25 times.
The four University of Sydney researchers are among 22 fellows elected to the Australian Academy of Humanities this year.
Academy of Technology and Engineering
All three newly elected Fellows are regarded as trailblazers whose work is changing the world for the better in the respective areas of computer science, biomedical engineering and materials engineering.
“ATSE Fellows are elected by their peers for outstanding contributions to advancing engineering, technology and applied science: these are the best of the best,” said Professor Hugh Bradlow, President of ATSE.
Professor Willy Zwaenepoel, Dean of Engineering, has been honoured for his globally regarded ongoing research into experimental computer science, particularly for advancing the theory and practice of distributed computing systems and machine learning technology. His work underpins the cloud technology many of us use every day.
He is joined by biomedical engineer Professor Hala Zreiqat AM FTSE from the School of Biomedical Engineering, who has invented a type of ceramic biomaterial that can be used as a scaffold to regrow bone and also developed the 3D technology to individually tailor the prosthetics for accident and cancer patients.
Rounding off the list is the University of Sydney’s Academic Director of Core Research Facilities and materials engineer Professor Simon Ringer from School of Aerospace, Mechanical and Mechatronics Engineering, who is currently collaborating with industry partners to better understand the properties of tungsten-carbide-cobalt-based hard metals and how these may be tuned via alloying and processing.