Professor Carole Mundell, Head of Astrophysics and Professor of Extragalactic Astronomy, has been awarded a named Chair in recognition of her outstanding contribution to the international field of astrophysics research and her work to promote diversity in STEM.

The Hiroko Sherwin Chair in Extragalactic Astronomy also recognises Carole’s contributions to the Department of Physics – which she headed from 2016 to 2018, before being appointed as Chief Scientific Adviser at the Foreign, Commonwealth and Development Office – and the wider University, which she represents at national and international levels.

A global launch

The Chair was publicly launched at an online event on Monday 22 February, attended by over 150 participants from across the world. During the event, Carole and University College London’s Professor Lucie Green discussed the latest discoveries in astrophysics, as well as the impact of scientists beyond the lab and the importance of women in STEM.

The Chair has been named in celebration of long-term supporters, Jim and Hiroko Sherwin, who have funded undergraduate scholarships and PhD positions in the Faculty of Science for over a decade.

“I am honoured and delighted to accept the Hiroko Sherwin Chair in Extragalactic Astronomy,” says Carole.

She continues:

I am deeply grateful to Jim and Hiroko Sherwin on a personal level, but also for their recognition of the importance of celebrating excellence in science, their understanding of the critical need for visible women role models in physics, and their sustained direct action to move the dial on gender bias in STEM.

Carole’s research has been instrumental in advancing understanding of cosmic black-hole driven explosions and the dynamic Universe.

A recent gift from the Sherwins will support this research and enable Carole to continue to inspire and develop the next generation of young researchers.

Hiroko Sherwin says:

Carole is an outstanding role model for gender diversity in Astrophysics and I am delighted to support her work.