UCD scholarship recognised as five top academics elected to Royal Irish Academy

Posted 23 May, 2022

New RIA members, Professors Stefan Oscarson, Fiona Doohan, Adreas Hess, Katherine Browne, and Tadhg O hAnnrachain with UCD Acting Registrar and Deputy President Professor Barbara Dooley, centre

The Royal Irish Academy has welcomed five professors from University College Dublin to sign its members book, the highest academic honour in Ireland.

The cohort were among 29 new RIA members elected to the Academy in recognition of their exceptional contributions to the sciences, humanities and social sciences, as well as to public service.

The UCD professors newly elected to the RIA on Friday, 20th May 2022 were:

  • Professor Katherine Browne
    • A professor of Geography at UCD, her research interests lie in social and cultural geographies, and in people’s spatial experiences of sexualities and genders
  • Professor Fiona Doohan
    • A professor of Plant Health at UCD, and a co-founder of the SME CropBiome, she is an expert in the development of sustainable methods for crop production; co-chairs the All-Island Food Integrity Initiative; and sits on the Scientific Committee for the Global Wheat Initiative.
  • Professor Andreas Hess
    • A professor of Sociology at UCD, his interests are wide-ranging, with a particular focus on historical sociology and the history of ideas (especially in the United States), and he has also written about the Basque country.
  • Professor Tadhg Ó hAnnracháin
    • A professor of History at UCD, he is a pre-eminent authority on Catholic renewal on ‘the margins of Europe’, and also has detailed the religious complexities that resulted from the migration of people, lay and clerical, female and male, Protestant and Catholic.
  • Professor Stefan Oscarson
    • A professor of Chemical Biology at UCD, he is one of the world leaders in the field of carbohydrate chemistry. His synthetic work underpins the development of drug and vaccine candidates against various infectious diseases.

Admittance to the Academy is the highest academic distinction in Ireland, and those elected by their peers are entitled to use the designation ‘MRIA’ after their name.

2022 RIA Admittance Day

Other newly elected members include Hannah McGee, deputy-chair of the National Research Ethics Committee for COVID-19; psychologist Orla Muldoon, a regular op-ed contributor to The Irish Times; Siobhán Mullally, UN Special Rapporteur on Trafficking in Persons; Virginia Teehan, Chief Executive of the Heritage Council; and and Linda Doyle, 45th Provost of Trinity College Dublin.

Welcoming this year's the newest entries, RIA President Dr Mary Canning said: “We are immensely proud of these 29 new Members who we are recognising today for their scholarly achievements, their research and international distinction or for significant contributions to Irish society.

“As new Members of the Academy, they will contribute to and strengthen our capacity to provide expert advice on Higher Education and Research policy.”

The Academy has been honouring Ireland’s leading contributors to the world of learning since its establishment in 1785.

There are now 656 RIA members, including Nobel Laureates William C. Campbell and John O'Keefe; Louise Richardson, Vice-Chancellor of the University of Oxford; Philip Lane, European Central Bank; Fabiola Gianotti, Director General CERN; Brigid Laffan, Irish political scientist and Director of the Robert Schuman Centre for Advanced Studies; and Geraldine Byrne-Nason, Ireland's Permanent Representative to the UN.

By: David Kearns, Digital Journalist / Media Officer, UCD University Relations