Dr Ross Anderson awarded a Royal Society University Research Fellowship

Dr Ross Anderson awarded a Royal Society University Research Fellowship

Congratulations to Dr Ross Anderson who has been awarded a Royal Society University Research Fellowship, one of 5 across the MPLS division.

The recently revised University Research Fellowship (URF) scheme provides financial support for outstanding researchers in the early stages of their careers who have the potential to become leaders in their field. These long term fellowships provide the opportunity and freedom to build an independent research career in the UK or Republic of Ireland and pursue cutting-edge scientific research. Professor Laura Herz, Associate Head (Research) in the MPLS Division, said: ‘It’s wonderful to see our early career researchers being recognised for their novel and ground-breaking research and I am delighted for all the recipients. We all look forward to following their projects as they develop over the course of the fellowship.’

Preserving the rise of complex life

The evolution of complex life like animals and plants transformed our planet and its ecosystems, but the early stages of this revolution remain poorly understood. The biggest barrier to our understanding is the rarity of early fossils. Looking for these key evolutionary markers is like looking for needles in a very large haystack. The Royal Society Research Fellowship will enable Ross the time to get to grips with how early fossils were preserved, helping him to pinpoint the right rocks to find them and inform an ambitious fieldwork programme. Ultimately the fellowship will enable him to address the tempo of the early evolution of complex life and how it was associated with environmental change.

Ross said of the award ‘Iā€™m immensely grateful to the Royal Society for this fellowship to support my research ambitions and this exciting project. I would also like to thank all those who have so generously supported me in my career so far, specifically my academic mentors and my colleagues here in Oxford at the Department of Earth Sciences and All Souls College.’

The full list of 2022/23 recipients was announced by the Royal Society this week.