Jocelyn Bell Burnell to be first female president of the RSE

6 February 2014

The Institute's former president, Prof. Dame Jocelyn Bell Burnell, is to be the first female president of the Royal Society of Edinburgh (RSE). She will take over the role from Sir John Arbuthnott in October and serve for a three-year term.

Currently a visiting professor of astrophysics at the University of Oxford, Prof. Bell Burnell is most widely known for the discovery of pulsars. A ballot of the RSE's more than 1500 fellows was overwhelmingly in favour of her nomination.

Prof. Bell Burnell was the first female president of the IOP and served from 2008-10, with a further period of service in 2011 after the death in office of Prof. Marshall Stoneham. She was also the president of the Royal Astronomical Society from 2002-04.

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