Oxford Mathematician Maria Bruna has won a prestigious L'Oréal UK & Ireland Fellowship For Women in Science. Launched in January 2007, the Fellowships are awards offered by a partnership between L'Oréal UK & Ireland, the UK National Commission for UNESCO and the Irish National Commission for UNESCO, with the support of the Royal Society. Five Fellowships are awarded annually to outstanding female postdoctoral researchers. Each worth £15,000, the Fellowships are tenable at any UK or Irish university / research institute to support a 12-month period of postdoctoral research in any area of the life and physical sciences, mathematics and engineering.
The Fellowships have been designed to provide practical help for the winners to undertake research in their chosen fields. For example, winners may choose to spend their fellowship on buying scientific equipment, paying for child care costs, travel costs or indeed whatever they may need to continue their research.
Maria's research interests lie in the stochastic modelling of interacting particle systems, with applications for explaining how individual-level mechanisms give rise to population-level behaviour in biology and ecology. She is the first mathematician to win a fellowship.