Fellows

Dr Henrique Fernandes de Aguiar Valim

Dr Henrique Fernandes de Aguiar Valim

JQYA Fellow 2024

Academy Fellowship Award

Research area: Circadian Rhythms in Symbioses

Research focus: Nearly all organisms across the tree of life have evolved circadian clocks, timekeeping mechanisms that help them to respond to changes in environmental conditions. Within organisms, the clocks of different tissues work in concert to optimize fitness. However, our understanding of how the clocks of different organisms contribute to the fitness of symbioses remains in its infancy. Henrique’s research investigates the circadian systems of the two primary partners in the lichen symbiosis: the fungal host and its algal partner. By combining population genomics of lichens across climate gradients with time series transcriptomics of lichen partners in symbiosis and in independent cultures, he hopes to address these key questions: (A) how do the circadian clocks of lichen symbionts contribute to the symbiosis? (B) how do symbionts affect one another’s circadian rhythms? (C) how do symbiont clocks contribute to adaptation along climate gradients?

Dr Elena M. Galeano Weber

Dr Elena M. Galeano Weber

JQYA Fellow 2024

Academy Fellowship Award

Research area: Cognitive Development and Psychology

Research focus: Elena studies human learning and memory processes such as working memory, the ability to briefly store information to make it available for complex cognitive processes. Her research focuses on aspects that limit cognitive capacity, i.e., mnemonic precision and cognitive fluctuations, with the aim of identifying mechanisms that might help to understand interindividual differences in cognitive developmental trajectories. Currently, she is investigating the effects of generative learning on knowledge and attitude towards conservation issues and the quality of support diagnoses based on child and environmental features in unsupervised machine learning models. To investigate these topics, she has used a variety of methods, e.g., cognitive modeling, neuroimaging, and eye tracking.

Jun.-Prof. Dr David Paul Gerards

Jun.-Prof. Dr David Paul Gerards

JQYA Fellow 2024

Academy Fellowship Award

Research area: Romance and General Linguistics

Research focus: David’s research seeks to holistically understand grammatical variation by bringing together experimental and big data digital approaches. In doing so, he conceives of linguistics as a discipline at the crossroads between the humanities and the natural sciences and combines linguistic theory building and empiricism. While he mainly focuses on Spanish and Portuguese – both in Europe and overseas – David is also particularly interested in comparative linguistics and in the structural and social aspects of Romance minority languages such as Romansh, Galician, and Francoprovençal. Together with colleagues from Portugal and Brazil, he is currently developing a multinational research project on the nativization of Portuguese in post-colonial Angola. A further mission of David’s is to contribute to the transfer of linguistic knowledge from academia to society.

Dr Leon Hilgers

Dr Leon Hilgers

JQYA Fellow 2024

Academy Fellowship Award

Research area: Evolutionary and Ecological Genomics

Research focus: Leon’s research focuses on understanding the molecular basis and evolutionary ecology of innovation and adaptation. With the climate and biodiversity crises escalating at alarming rates, Leon particularly focuses his attention towards understanding innovation and adaptation affecting survival in the Anthropocene. To achieve this goal, he uses naturally occurring diversity and integrates a variety of genomics tools with morphological and ecological datasets.

Dr Katarina Pitasse Fragoso

Dr Katarina Pitasse Fragoso

JQYA Fellow 2024

Academy Fellowship Award

Research area: Political Philosophy

Research focus: Katarina is a Humboldt Postdoctoral Fellow at the Chair of International Political Theory and Philosophy at Goethe University Frankfurt. Her research is in Political Philosophy, focusing primarily on issues related to relational inequalities, poverty, and oppression. Currently, she is working on mapping structural and historical aspects of urban injustices (especially, related to residential segregation, housing deprivation and gentrification), and the analysing the ethics of public policies at the local level, with special attention to participatory local governance.

Dr Rosa Celia Poquita-Du

Dr Rosa Celia Poquita-Du

JQYA Fellow 2024

Academy Fellowship Award

Research area: Experimental Ecology and Genomics

Research focus: Rosa’s research focuses on obligate symbiotic systems, in particular, those that mainly involve a photosynthetic algal partner such as coral and lichen. She is interested in acclimatization mechanisms of a holobiont to changing environments and examining phenotypic variations using a combination of physiological trait measurements and ‘omics tools (genomics and transcriptomics).

Dr Tristan M. Stöber

Dr Tristan M. Stöber

JQYA Fellow 2024

Academy Fellowship Award

Research area: Computational Neuroscience

Research focus: Tristan’s research agenda revolves around deciphering how the brain constructs and utilizes its internal model of the world, known as a cognitive map. He seeks to both solve fundamental questions in neuroscience and develop novel AI systems surpassing current technologies in reliability, data efficiency, and energy usage. To achieve this, Tristan and his team build neural networks to analyze experimental data and address real-world challenges. His ongoing projects primarily focus on information processing within the hippocampus, while also examining the development of epilepsy.

Dr Oliver Völker

Dr Oliver Völker

JQYA Fellow 2024

Sabbatical Fellowship Award

Research area: Comparative Literature

Research focus: Oliver’s research explores the influences between literature and the natural sciences (particularly geology) from European Romanticism to contemporary discussions of the Anthropocene. In several peer-reviewed articles, he has analysed the relationships between narrative or lyrical forms and scientific representations of the Earth, atmospheric phenomena and the ocean in European Romanticism and nineteenth-century literature. Oliver’s current research explores the role of hatred in German, English and French drama of the Baroque and Enlightenment periods. Beginning with a close analysis of hatred in classical Greek and Roman rhetoric, the project shows how hostile emotions such as hate, contempt and enmity shape the structure and language of mourning play and Enlightenment tragedy. The overall aim is to reconstruct a particular aesthetics of hatred and to explore its relationship to specific dramatic and linguistic forms such as the monologue and the curse.

Dr Seung-Goo Kim

Dr. Seung-Goo Kim

JQYA Fellow 2023

Academy Fellowship Award

Research area: Music Psychology and Computational Cognitive Neuroscience

Research focus: Neural mechanisms underlying emotional processes evoked by music. Behavioral psychophysics, human neuroimaging, and computational modeling of music and audio signals, embedded into psychological theories of emotion.

Dr. Sophie Nolden

Dr. Sophie Nolden

JQYA Fellow 2023

Academy Fellowship Award

Research area: Psychology and Cognitive Neuroscience

Research focus: Attention and memory over the lifespan with a specific focus on sensory processing. A multi-method approach, including auditory virtual reality, behavioural measurements, and measures of brain activity.

Dr. Caroline Sauter

Dr. Caroline Sauter

JQYA Fellow 2023

Sabbatical Fellowship Award

Research area: Comparative Literature, Literary Theory

Research focus: Literary theory, translation theory and language philosophy, particularly in German-Jewish thought, as well as the interconnection between literature and theology. Study about the language of love in European theory, which examines thinkers’ engagement with the biblical Song of Songs (shir ha-shirim), among them Goethe, Rosenzweig, Scholem, Kristeva, and Cixous.

Prof. Dr. Tobias Wille

Prof. Dr. Tobias Wille

JQYA Fellow 2023

Sabbatical Fellowship Award

Research area: International Relations

Research focus: Trust and distrust in international relations. Collective practice of trust within foreign policy bureaucracies such as foreign ministries, defense ministries, and chancelleries, as well as international security policy and diplomacy, as well as theories of practice and the everyday in global politics.

Dr. Daniele Di Mitri

JQYA Fellow 2022

Academy Fellowship Award

Research area: Artificial Intelligence in Education

Research focus: Daniele’s current research focuses on designing responsiblenArtificial Intelligence applications for education and human support. The main advantage of using AI is to provide learners with automated and personalised feedback to improve learning performance and skill mastery.

Dr. Kevin Liggieri

JQYA Fellow 2022

Academy Fellowship Award

Research area: History and Philosophy of Science and Technology, Philosophy of Technology, Anthropology of Technology

Research focus: Kevin’s research aims to analyze historically and philosophically the co-constructions of learning and technology. This approach will be used to understand how quantification is used to construct measurable as well as gendered learning subjects, who in turn were to be optimized and controlled through technization.

Dr. Laura McAdam-Otto

JQYA Fellow 2022

Academy Fellowship Award

Research area: European Ethnology / Cultural Anthropology

Research focus: The research project ethnographically examines how the arrival of Sargassum algae is governed along the Caribbean coast, with a focus on Mexico. Laura focuses on how touristified coastal zones transform, how responsibility for anthropogenic climate change is negotiated in everyday situations, and how humans and non-humans shape coastal futures.

Dr. Daniela Ortiz dos Santos

JQYA Fellow 2022

Sabbatical Fellowship Award

Research area: History of Art, Architecture and Urbanism / Cultural Studies of the Atlantic World

Research focus: Daniela’s research, teaching, and curatorial activities focus on transatlantic architectural history and historiography. The intersection of international organizations and intellectual migration has been useful to an ongoing project that explores Latin America as a category and the architectural historiography of the region during the Cold War era. Entitled ‘UNESCO Making Architecture Culture,’ it explores the different forms of instrumentalization of culture and the arts, as well as the role of this organization in exercising a regional integration movement. This project collaborates with institutions based in Europe and the Americas, in particular with universities in Mexico City and Rio de Janeiro, as well as with archival centers in Rennes (Archives de la critique d’art) and Frankfurt am Main (Deutsches Architekturmuseum).

Dr. Javier Ortiz-Tudela

JQYA Fellow 2022

Academy Fellowship Award

Research area: Psychology and Neuroscience

Research focus: Javier’s field of research is Cognitive Neuroscience where we study how cognitive functions such as Attention, Perception or Language are implemented in the brain. His current project focuses on Predictive Processing and its relation to Episodic Memory. More specifically, he is currently investigating the formation of new memories following unexpected situations and the neural mechanisms by which our experience bias the way we perceive the world. My research stems from Psychology but has direct connections to Physiology, Philosophy and Artificial Intelligence.

Dr. Stanislau Paulau

JQYA Fellow 2022

Academy Fellowship Award

Research area: Theology and Religious Studies

Research focus: Stanislau is a historian of religion and specialist in the field of Eastern Christianity. In his work, he strives to understand religious history as an entangled process and is particularly interested in networks operating across conventional boundaries, be it a certain religious tradition or a geographical region. His current research focuses on the long-term effects of interreligious knowledge exchanges as well as on the role of mobility and mission in the history of global Christianity.

Prof. Dr. Catherine Whittaker

JQYA Fellow 2022

Sabbatical Fellowship Award

Research area: Social and Cultural Anthropology

Research focus: As an expert on structural violence in the Americas, Whittaker is currently investigating transnational flows of militarized masculinity, with a particular focus on militant Latino groups in Southern California. Taking an intersectional, grassroots perspective, she is analyzing to what extent performances of masculinity are motivated by anti-racist aims and different kinds of nationalism, and how these militant groups are reshaping U.S. gun culture more broadly.