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Durham University

Durham Energy Institute

News

Durham Energy Institute appoints seven new fellows

(2 July 2015)

On Friday 22 and Friday 29 May 2015 the DEI held interviews for its non-stipendiary Mid-Career, Early-Career and PhD Fellowships. The recruitment drive was a huge success and we have appointed four Mid-Career Fellows, three Early-Career Fellows and one PhD Fellow. 

The purpose of the Fellowships is to broaden the Institute’s leadership team by strengthening the representation from PhD, Early and Mid-Career Fellows. DEI Fellows will benefit from the DEI’s exceptional academic, industrial and political links across a range of local and national levels, and the Fellowships are intended to develop and promote these links through both team and individual projects. Fellows will engage with the development of new research opportunities and links, both across the university and with our extensive external network of senior practitioners, and will help to shape the direction of the DEI.

DEI Mid-Career Fellows

Dr Ivana Evans, Reader in Chemistry, runs a research programme on oxide-ion conductors, materials needed as electrolytes in solid oxide fuel cells (SOFCs), devices for clean and efficient generation of electrical energy. She has also recently started new research into visible-light oxide and mixed-anion photocatalysts for hydrogen production.

Dr Charlotte Adams is the research manager for the BritGeothermal Research Partnership and is based in the Department of Earth Sciences. Her research interests include hydrogeology, hydrogeochemistry, geothermal energy and ground source heat and microgeneration.

Dr Hongjian Sun (Engineering) focuses on communication system integration with smart grids, demand side management and demand response, and integration of renewable energy sources. He currently leads Durham’s smart grid laboratory.

Dr Budhika Mendis works on microstructure and defect characterisation of thin-film solar cells (both inorganic and organic) primarily using electron microscopy. He has worked with colleagues in Durham Physics and Engineering, as well as collaborators both in the UK (Liverpool, Loughborough, Northumbria) and abroad (US, Switzerland, Luxembourg). Budhika is also the Service Manager for the Durham G.J. Russell Electron Microscopy Facility.

Early Career Fellows

Dr Daniel Knight is an Addison Wheeler Research Fellow in the Department of Anthropology at Durham University. Daniel has received EPSRC and Leverhulme grants for projects on renewable energy and sustainable economic development in Greece and Turkey, exploring the social and political impact of solar and wind energy developments in times of fiscal austerity.

Dr Amy Wilson’s research is in the area of statistics for energy systems, and involves the modelling of uncertainty in computer models. Particular applications have included methods for capacity adequacy assessment in Great Britain and a study of the effect of uncertainties on the outputs of a generation investment computer model used by the Department for Energy and Climate Change. 

PhD Fellow

Taras Fedirko’s doctoral research explores how and why British NGOs, civil servants and extractive companies seek to prevent the ‘resource curse’ in ‘developing countries’ by negotiating transparency policies that increasingly bind the governance of natural resources with the audit of resource revenues. His fieldwork has allowed him to take a close-up view of the ‘social life’ of transparency policies allows me to look into ideas, commitments and social arrangements through which these people imagine and pursue ‘accountable’ relations between governments and oil, gas and mining companies.