Society’s New Fellows Show Strength of Wales’ Academic and Intellectual Life

The Learned Society of Wales has welcomed 45 new academics, researchers and professionals to its Fellowship. The new Fellows demonstrate the ongoing excellence of Welsh research, universities and intellectual life, all of which have shone during the extraordinary events of this pandemic-marked year.

The new Fellows include academics from Welsh, UK and overseas higher education institutions as well as individuals who a play a significant role in Welsh public life. Specialisms range from nanotechnology to jazz, parliamentary history to tumour biology and much in between. 

A full list of the new Fellows, listing their institutions and subject specialisms, can be downloaded here

The Society’s President, Professor Hywel Thomas, said of the new intake: 

“I am delighted to welcome our new Fellows to the Learned Society of Wales. This past, extraordinary, year has shown the value of world-class research. There is a thirst for knowledge and expertise, in all fields, as we try to recover from the challenges of the pandemic. Our Fellows are at the forefront of that knowledge and expertise. 

“We have also elected a higher percentage of women Fellows than ever before, with 38%. There is more we need to do but I am also pleased we are making progress on our efforts to make the Society better reflect the diversity of Welsh life.” 

In addition, the Society has admitted two new Honorary Fellows, Professor Hazel Carby and Professor Sir Michael Berry

Professor Carby is Professor Emeritus of African American Studies and American Studies at Yale University. She is a pioneer in the fields of black feminism and is a leading scholar in black diasporic literature and culture. 

Professor Berry, Melville Wills Professor of Physics (Emeritus) at Bristol University, is one of the world’s leading theoretical physicists. He has made major contributions to mathematical physics in both the classical and quantum domains and at their interface. 

Professor Thomas said: 

“Our two new Honorary Fellows bring further prestige to the Society. They represent the best of scholarship in the sciences and humanities. Their insights, from the fundamental nature of our universe to the challenge of shaping a just, inclusive and humane society, are key to the values of the Learned Society of Wales.” 

Election to the Fellowship is based on a ballot of existing Fellows. It is a public recognition of excellence, is keenly competed and follows a rigorous examination of each nominee’s achievements in their relevant field(s). 

This election further strengthens our Fellowship not just by adding 45 new Fellows, including two new Honorary Fellows, but by enhancing our pool of expertise. The Society now has 595 distinguished Fellows who come from all branches of learning and are prominent figures within their respective academic disciplines or professions. 

The new Fellows will be formally admitted at the Society’s AGM which will be held on 19th May.