Fellow recognised as Future Leader

Monday 11 December 2023


An alumna and Fellow of St Catharine’s is among the UK’s “most promising research leaders” who will benefit from £101 million from by UK Research and Innovation (UKRI) to tackle major global issues and commercialise innovations.

Dr Niamh Gallagher (2009, History; Fellow 2018), University Associate Professor in Modern British and Irish History at the Faculty of History, will use her award to lead ground-breaking historical research into one of the greatest geopolitical transformations of the 20th century, the disappearance of the British Empire, by investigating how Ireland, the Irish and a series of so-called ‘Irish Questions’ influenced the multifarious 'ends' of the Empire, from 1886 to today. 

With partners spanning education, public policy and the media, this research will produce a series of innovative outputs and shareable recommendations that facilitate pathways to cohesion in post-conflict Northern Ireland and enhance British-Irish relations in the aftermath of Brexit.

She commented, “I am thrilled to have been recognised by UKRI as a Future Leader and delighted to have secured funding for this important research which has ramifications for Northern Ireland, Britain, Ireland, and communities living with the legacies of the British Empire. To lead an interdisciplinary project that creates postdoctoral research opportunities and valuable outputs in the fields of Education, Public Policy and the Media is a really exciting prospect."

Future Leaders Fellowships are awarded by UKRI to support universities and businesses in developing their most talented early career researchers and innovators, and to attract new people to their organisations, including from overseas. The 75 “most promising research leaders” recognised this year by UKRI have been awarded a total of £101 million in funding to tackle major global issues and to commercialise their innovations in the UK.

Professor Dame Ottoline Leyser, UKRI Chief Executive, said: 

“UKRI’s Future Leaders Fellowships provide researchers and innovators with long-term support and training, giving them the freedom to explore adventurous new ideas, and to build dynamic careers that break down the boundaries between sectors and disciplines.

“The fellows announced today illustrate how this scheme empowers talented researchers and innovators to build the diverse and connected research and innovation system we need to shorten the distance between discovery and prosperity across the UK.”

Find out more about studying History at St Catharine's.