Alumni Profiles

Howard Schweber Distinguished Chair

Home InstitutionUniversity of Winconsin-Madison
Host InstitutionFlinders University
Award Name2011 Fulbright Flinders University Distinguished Chair in American Political Science
DisciplinePolitical Science
Award Year2011

“The way people conceive of their government as representative speaks volumes about the way people conceive of themselves as democratic citizens and the working understandings of democracy that inform popular understandings of governmental legitimacy.”

Howard Schweber, a Professor with the Department of Political Science and Legal Studies at the University of Winconsin-Madison is the inaugural Fulbright Flinders University Distinguished Chair. The Australian Distinguished Chair in American Political Science was established in 2005, and is hosted in 2011-2015 by Flinders University.

Through his Fulbright, Professor Schweber will spend five months at Flinders University examining the ways in which foundational concepts of representative government have shaped the development of Australian constitutional and political culture.

Professor Schweber’s past research has focused on the conceptual underpinnings of American constitutionalism, and liberal democracy in general, and he has written books on the subject.

“There is a considerable body of work that compares different constitutional ideas across political cultures; my hope is to further that comparative understanding by drawing connections to differences in underlying conceptions of a basic democratic concept,” Professor Schweber said.

Professor Schweber said that Australia provides an exceptionally interesting case for comparative treatment because of its history of maintaining a constitutional system rooted in a combination of elements of British and American systems.

Professor Schweber is eager to take advantage of the archival resources, attitudinal information, and collaborative efforts that being in Australia will make possible. At the end of his project he plans to produce published work analysing the answers to these inquiries in comparative perspective.

Howard Schweber has a BA in Philosophy from the University of Pennsylvania, a JD from the University of Washington, an MS in History from the University of Chicago, and a PhD in Government from Cornell University. His forthcoming book is his fourth (others are studies of American legal history and the First Amendment). He will be accompanied in Australia by his wife and daughter, while another son will remain in the United States to pursue graduate studies.

Professor Carolyn Evans Senior Scholars

Carolyn Evans
Home InstitutionUniversity of Melbourne
Host InstitutionAmerican University and Emory University
Award NameFulbright Senior Scholar
DisciplineLaw
Award Year2010

Professor Carolyn Evans, Associate Dean (Research) at Melbourne Law School will use her Fulbright to go to Washington College of Law at American University and Emory University for three months. Carolyn will research religious freedom, looking at when and in what circumstances the law should recognise that people have consented to limitations on their religious freedom. She will examine this question in the context of employment, public school education and membership of religious groups. In addition to her Fulbright Scholarship, Carolyn has held a Rhodes Scholarship. Apart from her academic pursuits she has written children’s books for her own children, and enjoys reading and going to the theatre.

Professor Sundhya Pahuja Senior Scholars

Home InstitutionThe University of Melbourne
Host InstitutionInstitute for Global Law and Policy, Harvard University
Award NameFulbright Senior Scholarship
DisciplineInternational Law
Award Year2016

Sundhya is Professor of International Law and the Director of the Institute for International Law and the Humanities at the Melbourne Law School. Her research focuses on the question of global inequality and its relationship to international law and institutions, both in terms of how they may contribute to the amelioration of inequality, but also to its perpetuation. Sundhya has a strong ties with India, which find expression in her scholarly interests in the historical legacies of imperialism and anti-imperial struggles, expressed in legal and non-legal terms. One example is her book, Decolonising International Law: Development, Growth and the Politics of Universality which won the American Society of International Law prize in 2012, and the Woodward Medal in the Humanities and Social Sciences in 2014.

From 2012 – 2015, Sundhya concurrently held a Research Chair in Law at SOAS, University of London. She has held visiting positions at the London School of Economics, Birkbeck, New York University, University of British Colombia and Sydney University. She serves as Global Faculty at the Harvard Law School’s Institute for Global Law and Policy and is Affiliate Faculty of the European Collaborative Doctoral Programme in Globalisation and Legal Theory. In 2014, Sundhya was invited to serve as the Director of Studies in Public International Law at the Hague Academy of International Law, co-located at the Peace Palace with the International Court of Justice.

Before becoming an academic, Sundhya worked as a commercial lawyer in Melbourne, a research associate in international law and human rights at the EUI in Florence, and for several years chaired the Committee of Management at the Darebin Community Legal Centre. She is a founding member of the trilingual French/English/Spanish network, Global Justice/Injustice. In her spare time, Sundhya likes to walk, read and cook, and has recently been working on Indianish, a book of family recipes and stories.

Sundhya will take up her Fulbright Senior Scholar Award at the Harvard Institute for Global Law and Policy. There she will draw on an unrivalled collection of archival materials to begin a study of the place of the corporation in international law from the early modern period to the present day, and the implications of that history for today. The Institute is at the centre of the world’s largest network of scholars interested in heterodox approaches to international law and global problems. While she is there, Sundhya will develop links for junior and senior scholars from both Australia and the US to collaborate on innovative research around the pressing global questions of our time.

Scott Stephens Senior Scholars

Home InstitutionUniversity of California – Berkeley
Host InstitutionUniversity of Western Australia
Award NameSenior Scholarship
DisciplineEnvironmental Science
Award Year2013

“Wildfires continue to cause great destruction in the US and Australia and changing climates will make a very serious situation worse. Whether it is the 2009 Black Saturday Fire in Victoria or the 2012 Whitewater Fire in New Mexico, wildfires continue to challenge natural resource managers, politicians, and the public.”

Prof Scott Stephens, Professor with the Department of Environmental Science, Policy, and Management at University of California—Berkeley has won a Fulbright Senior Scholarship to come to the University of Western Australia for six months. He will work on the mitigation of large bush or wildfires.

“For over a century fire has been thought of as an arch-enemy with billions of dollars expended to eliminate it,” Scott said. “This policy has not worked because even though 96-99% of all ignitions can be suppressed when they are very small, the fires that get away burn huge areas and can damage natural resources, structures, and kill people.”

Scott says that instead of trying to eliminate fire from landscapes where it is ecologically critical a more appropriate goal would be to learn how humans can live with fire.

“One place in the world that has attempted to follow such a strategy is southwestern (SW) Western Australia. In contrast to SW Western Australia, the US continues to focus on the elimination of fire in most areas even though several recent US federal policies (National Fire Plan, Ten Year Comprehensive Strategy, Healthy Forest Restoration Act) have all attempted to diversify fire management to get away from only fire suppression,” Scott said.

This area has one largest fire management programs in the world and the largest in a Mediterranean climate. His project will analyze key characteristics of this novel program to take the knowledge back to the U.S. to see if it could be adopted there. In addition he will assist in the teacing of a gradute fire ecology class at the University of Western Australia.

Scott has a BS in electrical engineering and an MS in Biomedical Engineering from the California State University, Sacramento and a PhD in fire science from UC Berkeley. He has delivered testimony before the US House of Representatives on fires and forest and water protection. He has also been presented with an Undergraduate Teaching Excellence award from the ESPM Department. In his free time he enjoys hiking, backpacking and rebuilding old vehicles including a World War II military jeep.

Professor Mark Trotter Senior Scholars

Professor Mark Trotter, Central Queensland University
Home InstitutionInstitute for Future Farming Systems, CQUniversity
Host InstitutionThe Ohio State University / New Mexico State University
Award NameFulbright Future Scholarship Funded by The Kinghorn Foundation
DisciplinePrecision Livestock Management
Award Year2019

Mark grew up on a dairy farm on the mid-north coast of NSW where he developed a passion for agriculture and life-long goal of helping farmers become more productive, efficient and sustainable. He is an Associate Professor in Precision Livestock at CQUniversity Australia and focuses his research on sensor technologies for animals and pastures.

Mark’s Fulbright project will explore how data from GPS tracking and behavioural sensors on livestock can be integrated with satellite imagery of the pastures or rangelands being grazed. The project will be undertaken in two very different environments: the first in Ohio where soils are fertile and rainfall plentiful; and the second in New Mexico, where desert rangelands dominate. The outcomes will provide farmers with a deeper understanding of the way in their cattle or sheep are using the pasture and landscape, enabling them to make better decisions to increase production efficiency and reduce environmental impacts such as overgrazing.

Dr David Mizrahi Postdoctoral Scholars

Home InstitutionUNSW Sydney / Behavioural Sciences Unit, Sydney Children’s Hospital
Host InstitutionDepartment of Epidemiology and Cancer Control, St. Jude Children's Research Hospital
Award NameFulbright Postdoctoral Scholarship (funded by The Kinghorn Foundation and Western Sydney University)
DisciplineMedical Science
Award Year2019

David is a researcher and Accredited Exercise Physiologist at UNSW Sydney and the Behavioural Sciences Unit, Sydney Children’s Hospital. For his Fulbright Postdoctoral Scholarship, David will work with Dr Kirsten Ness in the Department of Epidemiology and Cancer Control at St. Jude Children’s Research Hospital. Developing chronic diseases is common among childhood cancer survivors, hence the need to develop models to identify and support those at increased risk of developing chronic disease earlier. David will learn about using large longitudinal datasets that follow childhood cancer survivors to create algorithms that identify survivors at-risk for cardiovascular disease. He will also investigate the role that exercise plays in improving physical and psychological health after a cancer diagnosis. His fellowship aims to build the partnership between Australian and U.S. researchers and strengthen the evidence-base regarding using exercise to prevent chronic disease in this vulnerable population.

Natasha Wiggins Postdoctoral Scholars

Home InstitutionUniversity of Tasmania
Host InstitutionUniversity of Tasmania
Award NameBoise State University, Idaho and Washington State University
DisciplineBiological Sciences
Award Year2011

“Sustainable wildlife management strategies in Tasmania need to be based on ecological and behavioural data regarding the interactive processes that involve priority species. This will help us to understand the likely responses of individuals and groups to management efforts.”

Dr Natasha Wiggins, a postdoctoral researcher with the University of Tasmania, is the winner of the 2011 Fulbright Tasmania Scholarship. This scholarship is sponsored by the Tasmanian government and the University of Tasmania and is awarded to an applicant to undertake research in the United States on a topic or issue of importance to the state.

Through her Fulbright, Natasha will investigate the relationship between the pygmy rabbit and its key food source, sagebrush. Her research aims to advance our understanding of how mammalian herbivores, such as the pygmy rabbit, select their food.

“The proposed research will offer crucial insights into the eucalypt herbivore systems in Australia and expand our knowledge of what factors drive herbivore feeding decisions,” Natasha said. “This information is of particular importance in areas where herbivores and humans are directly competing for the same resources.” “Diet availability is considered the overarching driver of herbivore foraging decisions, but recent advances in plant-herbivore ecology suggest that diet quality should also be factored into foraging decisions.”

Natasha will investigate the influence of diet quality, availability and temperature-dependent tolerance to plant chemistry between pygmy rabbits and sagebrush. Her research will provide important insights into how herbivores respond to seasonal differences in diet quality and availability, and the influence that temperature may play in altering herbivore responses to plant chemistry. Natasha’s research will provide a greater insight into eucalypt-herbivore systems in Australia.

Natasha has a BSc and a PhD (Biological Sciences) from the University of Tasmania. She has also received awards and funding including the Winifred Violet Scott Trust; Research funding for sustainable wildlife management from the TCFA: Alternatives to 1080 Program; and the Claudio Alcorso Foundation Environment Prize. In her spare time she enjoys bush walking and hiking, and community involvement in programs which promote wildlife education.

The prestigious Fulbright program is the largest educational scholarship of its kind, created by U.S. Senator J. William Fulbright and the U.S. Government in 1946. Aimed at promoting mutual understanding through educational exchange, it operates between the U.S. and 155 countries. In Australia, the scholarships are funded by the Australian and U.S. Governments and corporate partners and administered by the Australian-American Fulbright Commission in Canberra. Natasha is one of 26 talented Australians to be recognised as a Fulbright Scholar in 2011.

 

Joshua Dunne Postgraduate Students

Home InstitutionThe University of Western Australia
Host InstitutionGeorgetown University
Award NameFulbright Postgraduate Scholarship
DisciplinePolitical Science / International Relations
Award Year2019

Joshua graduated from the University of Western Australia in 2018 with a Bachelor of Philosophy (Honours), having written his Honours dissertation on the subject of competing French and Chinese political influence within the North African state of Algeria. Joshua will utilise his Fulbright Scholarship to pursue a Masters’ Degree in International Security, consolidating his understanding of the modern threats and challenges facing states throughout the developing world, while retaining his personal focus on the ever-changing yet always relevant region of the Middle East and North Africa. Joshua hopes to apply his understanding of regional security challenges in a professional setting through a role within the Australian diplomatic corps, drawing upon his passion for interstate relationships and cross-cultural cooperation to help surmount the obstacles and challenges facing the developing world in the 21st century.

Angelina Hurley Postgraduate Students

Home InstitutionUniversity of Technology Sydney, University of New South Wales
Host InstitutionNew York University
Award Name2011 Fulbright Indigenous Scholarship sponsored by the Department of Education, Employment and Workplace Relations
DisciplineWriting for Film and TV
Award Year2011

“Humour of the marginalised is used to validate, humanise, normalise and celebrate a marginalised group or whatever the cultural distinctive is. Humour of the dominant culture often objectifies and dehumanises the marginalised ‘other’ to soften the sting of injustice.”

Angelina Hurley, a student undertaking a Doctorate of Creative Arts at the University of Technology Sydney, has won the 2011 Fulbright Indigenous Scholarship supported by the Department of Education, Employment and Workplace Relations. Through her Fulbright she plans to visit and undertake study and research at a couple of Institutes and organisations in Los Angeles and New York to gain further experience and skill in comedy writing for film and television. Her dream and goal is to write an Indigenous television series/sitcom which is also her Doctoral project.

“Professionally I would love to be a full-time writer. Through my research topic, ‘Blak Comedy and Indigenous Cultural Perspectives on Humour’, I am investigating the development of Australian Indigenous comedy,” Angelina said. “The genre of Indigenous comedy predominantly lives within the Indigenous community itself, unknown to mainstream Australia and is still to break through there.  It would be great to see more of it on mainstream television.”

“I intend for the final product of my studies to be something that appeals to all demographics. I hope it has the potential to reach international audiences.” Angelina said. Angelina has a BEd (Secondary Teaching Art), Kelvin Grove Teachers College; a BEd (Adult Education) from UTS; and an MAA (Arts Management) from University of New South Wales.  Angelina was awarded the Myer Indigenous Scholarship to study Script Writing and Directing with the Australian Film and Television School, Sydney in 2008. In her spare time she enjoys writing, swimming, yoga, the arts.

The prestigious Fulbright program is the largest educational scholarship of its kind, created by U.S. Senator J. William Fulbright and the U.S. Government in 1946. Aimed at promoting mutual understanding through educational exchange, it operates between the U.S. and 155 countries. In Australia, the scholarships are funded by the Australian and U.S. Governments and corporate partners and administered by the Australian-American Fulbright Commission in Canberra. Angelina is one of 26 talented Australians to be recognised as a Fulbright Scholar in 2011.

 

Shraddha Kashyap Postgraduate Students

Home InstitutionThe University of Western Australia
Host InstitutionNew York University and Bellevue Program for Survivors of Torture
Award NameFulbright Western Australia Postgraduate Scholarship
DisciplinePsychology
Award Year2016

Shraddha is currently a PhD candidate and a Provisionally Registered Psychologist completing a Master of Clinical Psychology, at the University of Western Australia. Shraddha’s doctoral study involves the translation of psychological research into clinical practice. Her work in the School of Psychology at the University of Western Australia has involved a collaboration with Perth Clinic; a private mental health facility. She found that continuously measuring individuals’ psychological distress during treatment, rather than once at the beginning and once at the end of treatment, can improve precision in predicting adverse health outcomes, such as risk of self-injury. For example, it is often thought that all individuals who report high initial distress would be at the highest risk of self-injury. However, she has published work finding that individuals who report an early improvement in psychological distress are at a lower risk of self-injury despite beginning with high initial distress. This novel approach of continuous monitoring has the potential for more individualized, nuanced and precise risk assessment techniques that extend beyond inpatient mental health facilities and could be used to enhance mental health outcomes more broadly. Shraddha grew up in Kenya, and had lived in Jordan for one year before migrating to Australia with her family in 2002. Prior to commencing her PhD, Shraddha won a scholarship to study in Lille, France, and has since travelled around Europe, South America, North America and Asia.

Shraddha has a keen interest in refugee mental health, and hopes to find meaningful ways of helping displaced peoples begin new lives despite suffering from previous trauma.  The Fulbright Scholarship will allow Shraddha to apply her doctoral research to an asylum seeker and refugee population.  She will investigate resilience among individuals undergoing treatment at the NYU/Bellevue Program for Survivors of Torture.  Specifically, she will examine whether multiple measurements of psychological distress over time can help pinpoint groups of individuals who may improve more rapidly than others, and study factors associated with this resilience.  These factors would include a combination of individual and community characteristics, as well as factors related to their treatment.  Identifying these factors through quantitative and qualitative measurements would allow clinicians to isolate the most helpful aspects of treatment, and improve outcomes for more individuals.

Josiah Khor Postgraduate Students

Home InstitutionThe Australian National University
Host InstitutionTexas A&M
Award NamePostgraduate Scholarship
DisciplineEngineering (Petroleum / Reservoir)
Award Year2015

Josiah graduated from the Australian National University in 2013 with a Bachelor of Science majoring in mathematics, and a Bachelor of Engineering with First Class Honours. He was awarded the University Medal, the HA Jones Medal for Engineering Excellence, and the Institute of Engineering and Technology prize upon his graduation. Additionally Josiah was the recipient of multiple scholarships and prizes throughout his undergraduate studies.

Josiah currently works as a Senior Engineer with FEI Lithicon Digital Rock Services in Canberra, a high technology start-up out of the Australian National University focused on providing digital core imaging and analysis services. This role has exposed him to several fields: high performance parallel computing, micro-CT X-ray imaging, and petroleum engineering. His goal is to build expertise in high performance parallel computing programming while developing applications for the oil and gas industry.

Josiah was first introduced to the field of digital rock physics during his undergraduate studies, when he undertook an internship with Lithicon while simultaneously pursuing an individual research project on calibration in micro-CT X-ray imaging at the Australian National University. Since then, he has become more deeply involved with the research and development of image processing and simulation algorithms in the area of digital rock physics.

His current focus is the upscaling of flow properties from laboratory to field scales using digital rock technology. It has been established that small-scale features (e.g., clay layers) can have a significant impact on hydrocarbon recovery and CO2 sequestration. Unfortunately, small-scale heterogeneities cannot be directly incorporated into field-scale (km scale) simulation models because of limitations in computing power. Therefore, the ultimate effects of small-scale heterogeneities in large-scale numerical simulations of flow properties must be accounted for through upscaling techniques. Josiah’s research on imaging and analyzing core samples at multiple scales will help identify the importance of incorporating realistic sedimentary geometries in effective flow and CO2 storage estimates due to contrasts in permeability and pore structure.

In his spare time, Josiah is also involved with the Raising Hope Education Foundation, a local not-for-profit organisation that connects university volunteers with local schools to build confidence in local schoolkids. He currently serves as a Director on the Board of Raising Hope. When not working or travelling, Josiah enjoys spending his free time running, fishing and playing soccer, and has also practiced Judo in the past. A keen snowboarder, Josiah has travelled to Japan and New Zealand chasing the snow. He also enjoys documenting his travels as an amateur photographer and relaxing at the beach.

Josiah’s current focus is the extrapolation of flow properties from smaller to larger scales using digital imaging of rock samples. It is well established that the small scale (below a millimetre) variations in rock structures can significantly impact the recovery of oil and gas from the earth. However, limitations in computing power means that these variations cannot be directly accounted for when modelling hydrocarbon fields on the kilometre scale. Therefore, the ultimate effects of these small-scale variations in large-scale numerical models must be accounted for using upscaling techniques that integrate different scales of information into a single model. Josiah’s research on imaging and analyzing rock samples at multiple scales will help identify the importance of incorporating realistic sedimentary properties when calculating fluid flow and storage properties of rocks.

During his Fulbright scholarship, Josiah plans to spend his time undertaking a Masters of Petroleum Engineering at Texas A&M. Texas A&M is one of the global leading universities in Petroleum Engineering. This program represents a significant opportunity to learn more about the industry from a different viewpoint, in order to better tailor the potential applications of digital rock physics.

Nathan Pensler Postgraduate Students

Home InstitutionPitzer College, Claremont California
Host InstitutionThe Australian National University
Award NamePostgraduate Scholarship
DisciplinePhilosophy
Award Year2013

“Questions about scientific rationality are important for policy decisions and are of general public interest. When policymakers or laypersons accept a scientific theory based on testimony from scientists, it is preferable to know why scientific institutions are trustworthy producers of knowledge. Additionally, scientific rationality also figures into significant legal decisions.”

Mr Nathan Pensler, a recent graduate in philosophy from Pitzer College in Claremont California is a 2013 Fulbright Scholar sponsored by the ANU College of Business and Economics. He will come to the Australian National University in Canberra to further his studies in Philosophy. Nathan’s particular areas of expertise are epistemology and the philosophy of science. His research is at the intersection of these two areas, in the field of formal epistemology.

“Exciting interdisciplinary inquiry into the nature and scope of human rationality is being conducted in a field known as formal epistemology. Formal epistemology is a subarea in philosophy that uses mathematical techniques to study human reasoning.” Nathan said.

While in Canberra, Nathan will investigate philosophical theories of scientific rationality. He will study Bayesian Confirmation Theory, a mathematical model that uses concepts from the study of probability, and Inference to the Best Explanation, a qualitative account. Nathan hopes to determine whether these two accounts can be unified and if so, explore how this unification can best be carried out. He plans to investigate these two ways of thinking about scientific reasoning with Professor Alan Hájek, an ANU professor of philosophy who is a leading researcher in formal epistemology.

Nathan has a BA in Philosophy from Pitzer College. Nathan won several awards and grants while at Pitzer and attended the selective Colorado Summer Seminar in Philosophy. His interests include mountain biking, skiing, and hiking.

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