The elected Fellows are Professors Holder Babinsky, Andrea Ferrari, Rob Miller and Rachel Oliver University of Cambridge

Earlier this week (22/09), it was announced that four Cambridge researchers have been elected Fellows at the Royal Academy of Engineering, the national academy for engineering and technology.

The prestigious Fellowship is awarded to “leading figures” in their field, with their 69 recipients awarded for “exceptional contributions to their sectors as innovation leaders, inspiring role models, or through remarkable achievements in business or academia.”

At Cambridge, Professors Holder Babinsky, Andrea Ferrari, Rob Miller from the Department of Engineering and Professor Rachel Oliver from the Department of Material Science and Metallurgy, have been elected.

Professor Holger Babinsky, a Fellow of Magdalene College, specialises in aerodynamics relating to energy production and road vehicles. 

Professor Andrea Ferrari, a Fellow of Pembroke College, researches nanotechnology. He is the Director of the Cambridge Graphene Centre and EPSRC Centre for Doctoral Training in Graphene Technology

Professor Rob Miller, a Fellow of Gonville and Caius College, specializes in aerothermal technology, serving as Director of Whittle Laboratory, which looks into creating zero carbon flights. 

Professor Rachel Oliver (Fellow of Robinson College) specializes in material science research, serving as Director of the Cambridge Centre of Gallium Nitride, which plays a crucial role in the provision of chemical materials to academics and institutions across the UK.

Commenting on the selection of Fellows, Oliver said: “It [is] fantastic that the Academy engages with everything from nanoscale materials engineering to the much grander scale of wind turbines and jet engines”, highlighting that “these varied aspects of engineering are highly important for sustainability”.

Speaking on the new appointments, Sir Jim Mcdonald FREng FRSE, President of the Royal Academy, commented: “This year’s new Fellows are the most diverse group elected in the history of our institution.


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"The engineering profession has long suffered from a diversity shortfall and the Academy is committed to changing that, including by ensuring that our own Fellowship community is as inclusive as it can be."

Mcdonald added: “It is well established that diverse organisations tend to be more agile and more innovative, and as the UK’s National Academy for engineering and technology, we have a responsibility to reflect the society we serve in addressing the shared challenges of our future.”

This news comes following the inception of the Fellowship's "Fit for the Future Initiative” in July last year, which aimed to improve representation of elected Fellows to the Academy.

The initiative and will see “increased representation from women, disabled and LGBTQ+ engineers, those from minority ethnic backgrounds, non-traditional education pathways and emerging industries, and those who have achieved excellence at an earlier career stage than normal”.