Students Staff

24 December 2013

Highlights from 2013

Here are just a few highlights from another fantastic year at the University of Essex. Our students have achieved national and international success, while our academics have continued to build on Essex's reputation for research excellence.

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There are so many highlights, but here is a little taster of our year of success. Please visit our news pages to find out more.

Highlights from 2013

  • The Queen presented a prestigious Regius Professorship to Essex in recognition of our excellence in research and education in political science.
  • Times Higher Education Award for Outstanding Support for Students was presented to Essex for the way it integrates innovative schemes such as the Frontrunners work placement scheme with wider Student Support strategies.
  • The Forum Southend-on-Sea opened offering students state-of-the-art facilities. The opening programme of lectures includes Brian Cox giving the inaugural lecture.
  • Screenwriting tutor Sheryl Crown celebrated after Searching for Sugar Man the documentary film she worked on as executive producer won an Oscar.
  • The Coral Reef Research Unit held groundbreaking underwater marine biology lectures 18 metres under the sea during dives in Indonesia.
  • Nobel Laureate and Professor of Poetry Derek Walcott unveiled his new show O Starry Starry Night at the Lakeside Theatre.
  • Professor Sir Nigel Rodley was elected President of the International Commission of Jurists (ICJ) and Chair of the Human Rights Committee at the United Nations.
  • England cricket captain Alastair Cook received an honorary degree in April and then we welcome a range of outstanding individuals to our Graduation ceremonies in July to receive honorary degrees including Olympic cycling hero Laura Trott and human rights activist and international singing star Annie Lennox.
  • The Languages for All project was presented with the European Language Label 2013, for being an innovative language-learning project.
  • Celebrated Chinese gymnast Chen Yibing, four-time world champion on the still rings, and gold and silver medal-winner at the 2012 London Olympics made a unique visit to the University.
  • The University of Essex was ranked in the world top 100 for social sciences in the Times Higher Education World Rankings and maintained its position in the top 300 universities in the world, representing the top two per cent of institutions.
  • Essex’s position as one of the UK’s top universities for social sciences was underlined in the new Times and Sunday Times Good University Guide. Politics, Linguistics, Sociology and Economics at Essex all ranked in the top 20 among UK universities. Essex’s strength in the humanities was also reinforced with Philosophy, History of Art, American Studies and Dance, Drama and Cinematics also gaining top 20 rankings.
  • The Employability and Careers Centre at Essex received the Local Impact Work Inspiration Award for its innovative Frontrunners programme at the East of England Responsible Business Awards.

Student success

  • A team from Essex Business School won the Grand Final of this year’s IBM backed Universities Business Challenge – the premier business competition for university students in the UK.
  • A team of Essex law students won through to the final of the European Law Students Association (ELSA) European Human Rights Moot Court Competition.
  • University of Essex law students reached the semi-finals of the 25th Jean-Pictet International Humanitarian Law Competition in Thailand.
  • Student entrepreneurs came third in the 2013 National Student Apprentice (NSA) Challenge.
  • The University was named in the top five for enterprising students according to the RBS Enterprising Students Rankings.
  • Sports scholar Emma Lucraft defeated the best in Europe to claim the under-21 Junior Kata title at the European Junior Karate Championships.
  • Third year Creative Writing student Lucy Greer had a story accepted by Ellery Queen's Mystery Magazine – the world’s top mystery magazine – and secured a deal with leading agent Jane Gregory for her first novel.
  • A total of 308 students completed the Big Essex Award during its first year, the award aims to recognise students for all the extra-curricular activities they get involved in.
  • Sports scholar and Politics and Law student Adeseye Ogunlewe won the men's 100 metres in the British Universities and Colleges Sport (BUCS) outdoor athletics competition.
  • BSc International Enterprise and Business Development student Aaron Jones was named one of the Future 50 Young Social Entrepreneurs of the Year for his eco fashion label Fikay.
  • University of Essex Students' Union society Enactus Essex won the Best Professional Development Programme award at the RBS Enterprising Student Society Accreditation (ESSA) awards.

Academic awards

  • Professor Eamonn Carrabine, Head of the Department of Sociology, was awarded the 2012 Radzinowicz Prize by the British Journal of Criminology (BJC) for his article ‘Just Images: Aesthetics, Ethics and Visual Criminology’.
  • Professors Lydia Morris, from the Department of Sociology, and Marco Francesconi, from the Department of Economics, were elected as Academicians of the Academy of Social Sciences.
  • Professor Marina Warner from the Department of Literature, Film, and Theatre Studies received the National Book Critics Circle Award for Criticism, the Sheikh Zayed Award for Arab Culture in Non-Arabic Languages and the Truman Capote Award for Literary Criticism for her book Stranger Magic: Charmed States and the Arabian Nights.
  • A book on playwright and theorist Jean Genet by Clare Finburgh from the Department of Literature, Film, and Theatre Studies and co-author David Bradby was named as a Choice Outstanding Academic Title.
  • Professor Dawn Ades from the School of Philosophy and Art History received a CBE for services to higher education and art history.
  • The Political Studies Association's prestigious Judges’ Award was presented to the British Election Study in acknowledgement of its significant contribution to political studies and public debate. The University of Essex has played a key role in the growth and development of the Study, running it from 1974 to 1983 and then from 2001 to 2010.
  • Professor Ian Budge was presented with one of Europe’s premier awards for political science, the biennial Lifetime Achievement Award from the European Consortium for Political Research. The award recognised his exceptional contribution to European political science over several decades through international research projects, monographs and scholarly production, and service to the development and growth of the discipline.
  • Director of the Centre for Criminology at Essex, Professor Dick Hobbs, received the Outstanding Publication Award from the International Association for the Study of Organized Crime (IASOC) for his book Lush Life: Constructing Organized Crime in the UK.
  • Criminology expert Professor Nigel South was presented with a prestigious Lifetime Achievement Award in recognition of his long-standing and distinguished international contribution to the field by the American Society of Criminology's Division on Critical Criminology.
  • Professor Philip Terry, director of Creative Writing in the Department of Literature, Film, and Theatre Studies (LiFTS) at Essex, was shortlisted for the Goldsmiths Prize 2013 for his book tapestry.
  • Professor Marina Warner CBE, from the Department of Literature, Film, and Theatre Studies at Essex, was chosen as the chair of judges for the prestigious 2015 Man Booker International Prize.
  • Professor Mark Harvey in the Department of Sociology was awarded a prestigious Economic and Social Research Council (ESRC) Professorial Fellowship to support research into how different areas of the world are dealing with climate change, diminishing natural resources and the pressure for food production.
  • Mathematician Professor Peter Higgins won the prestigious Premio Peano, an annual Italian award celebrating readable books that make maths accessible to all.

Research success

  • Scientists from the School of Computer Science and Electronic Engineering at Essex were chosen to help develop a Centre for Doctoral Training (CDT) in Intelligent Games and Game Intelligence (IGGI) in partnership with with colleagues at the universities of York and Goldsmiths to
  • Cutting-edge science research at Essex received a major boost after a partnership including leading universities from across the eastern region was awarded a share of £100 million by the Natural Environment Research Council (NERC). Environment East (EnvEast) is a partnership between the univeristies of East Anglia, Essex and Kent, who together form the Eastern Academic Research Consortium (ARC), and eight other core partners. EnvEast is one of 15 successful Doctoral Training Partnerships (DTPs) announced by the Minister for Universities and Science, David Willetts MP.
  • Two University of Essex-based lawyers and their students helped leading human rights organisation REDRESS secure a landmark judgement upholding the right to justice and reparations for exiled torture survivors from Pinochet-era Chile. This was the first time the Inter-American Court of Human Rights (IACHR) had decided the case of a living survivor of human rights violations under General Augusto Pinochet’s dictatorship, and in particular, someone who has been subject to torture and forced exile. Dr Clara Sandoval, from the School of Law and Director of the Essex Transitional Justice Network, and Lorna McGregor, Director of the Human Rights Centre, both worked on the case.
  • Essex is helping establish a Doctoral Training Partnership for the arts and humanities as part of CHASE (Consortium for Humanities and the Arts South-East England) – a partnership of seven institutions (The Courtauld Institute of Art, Goldsmiths, University of London, the Open University, and the Universities of East Anglia, Essex, Kent and Sussex) formed to promote excellence in research, postgraduate research training and knowledge exchange in the arts and humanities.
  • David Willetts MP, Minister for Universities and Science, announced plans for a Big Data Network which included almost £5 million from the the Economic and Social Research Council (ESRC) for the UK Data Service at the University of Essex to form a new service for streamlining research access to data collected by government departments and other agencies.
  • Researchers aiming to improve health and social care in the East of England were given a £5 million funding boost. The five-year funding was awarded to the National Institute of Health Research (NIHR) Research Design Service East of England (RDS EoE), which is based in the School of Health and Human Sciences at Essex with partner sites at the universities of Bedfordshire, Cambridge, East Anglia, Hertfordshire and NHS trusts. Researchers who are developing research ideas and seeking national, peer-reviewed funding can request support from the RDS EoE.

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