Trinity has appointed eight Junior Research Fellows (JRF) for 2022. Trinity’s Research Fellowships provide an opportunity to spend up to four years in Cambridge undertaking post‐doctoral research or scholarly work at an early stage of an academic career.
Each JRF introduced below will feature in a Q&A in the coming months.
Dr Giulia Bellato
Dr Giulia Bellato is a medieval historian who completed her PhD at Trinity College. Her thesis considered the deliberate destruction of urban residences in Medieval Italy, focusing on the period c.700-1200.
Her research combines archaeological and historical approaches to study the phenomenon of people and groups acting violently towards the built environment, damaging and destroying buildings, in order to codify precise political messages.
During her fellowship, she will continue to concentrate on urban life, social competition, and political violence, with a focus on central and southern Italy, a region for which considerably fewer studies of this kind exist in comparison to other areas of Europe.
Dr Kara Fong
Dr Kara Fong’s PhD focussed on the molecular-level behaviour of Li-ion battery materials, using a combination of computer simulations and theory to understand how lithium ions move within the battery. This understanding provides principles for designing better batteries that can store more energy and charge faster.
During her Fellowship, she will study electrolytes under nanoconfinement, where the solution is confined to the inside of a nanoscale pore or channel. These systems are central to a variety of technologies for clean water and energy, from batteries and supercapacitors to water purification membranes, but the physics underlying their behaviour is poorly understood.
Dr Joshua Heath
Dr Joshua Heath’s research focusses on Russian religious thought in the twentieth century, particularly the work of the Russian philosopher-theologian Sergii Bulgakov (1871-1944). He seeks to bring this Russian material into conversation with contemporary philosophy and theology, particularly regarding the nature of language and reality.
During his time as a JRF he will publish a version of his thesis on Bulgakov. He is also a member of a team that is translating and editing a four-volume collection of his writings into English.
Dr Heath also hopes to produce a substantial anthology of translated writings by another, extraordinary Russian thinker, Aleksei Losev (1893-1988), whose work is almost entirely unknown in the English-speaking world. He will also begin a book on free speech and the Christian tradition.
Dr Kamil Majcherek
Dr Kamil Majcherek is an historian of medieval philosophy whose main focus as a JRF will be the late medieval debate about the ontological status of numbers. This debate is currently under-researched and will begin by searching archives for relevant texts.
During his Fellowship he also plans to finish reworking his PhD thesis, ‘Medieval Metaphysics of Artefacts 1250-1500’, into a monograph.
Dr Andrea Pizzi
Physicist Dr Andrea Pizzi, who has degrees from Italy and France, completed his PhD at the University of Cambridge.
Using the language of quantum and statistical theoretical physics, he is interested in understanding how large collections of particles evolve in time. By investigating the circumstances under which the behaviour of such systems fundamentally differs from that of just a few particles, he explores problems as various as the characterization of exotic nonequilibrium phases of matter and the design unconventional light sources.
During his Fellowship he will explore two main strands of research on many-body nonequilibrium systems.
Dr Katarzyna Warburton
Mathematician Kasia Warburton is currently a postdoctoral fellow at Dartmouth College in the Thayer School of Engineering, as part of the inter-disciplinary Society of Fellows. She works on understanding what is happening below the ice in Antarctica. The ice is not stationary, but sliding into the ocean on a layer of water, or wet mud and she is modelling the interactions between the ice and its bed so as to improve predictions of ice loss and sea level rise.
At Trinity she will continue this work on subglacial hydrology, in particular on patterning and what it can tell us about ice sheet processes. The water underneath ice can flow in a smooth layer, or carve out huge channels in the ice above – what sets that difference?
She is also interested in what the landforms left behind from extinct ice sheets can tell us about the ice that moved them there, especially as radar now reveals similar structures under present day glaciers.
Dr Roseanna Webster
Dr Roseanna Webster is a social and political historian with interests in gender, popular politics and international movements. Her doctoral research captures the untold stories of working-class Spanish women who joined together to fight for urban change, labour rights and reproductive justice during Francisco Franco’s dictatorship and in its immediate aftermath.
She is currently completing a book based on her doctoral thesis, which will draw on interviews with fifty former activists, archival sources and photographs. The book will show how women transformed their surroundings from the middle to the late twentieth century, and how organising in turn shaped their own subjectivities.
Her next project considers the underexplored legacies of Spain’s role in the slave trade in Cuba and Puerto Rico. She will use the built environment as a historical resource alongside archival material and personal testimonies, in this case diaries and memoir.
Dr Linda Qian is also elected JRF for research in Chinese Studies. Dr Bellato and Dr Warburton will begin in 2023 and Dr Pizzi in 2024.