New Awards by Humboldt Foundation

Professor Rod Downey from the School of Mathematics, Statistics and Computer Science at VUW received a Humboldt Research Award to conduct research at the University of Heidelberg. Downey works at the interface of computer science and mathematics. His works seeks to understand what parts of mathematics can be made computable, and if so, how computable it is in terms of computational complexity. He developed a branch of complexity theory called parameterized complexity which uses bounds on parameters to explore efficiency, and has more recently been involved in algorithmic information theory, and effective algebra. See

Prof. Kathy Lüdge has been awarded a Feodor Lynen Research Fellowship for Experienced Researchers. Her hosts during her 11 month stay at the University of Auckland are Prof. John Harvey from the Physics Department and Prof. Bernd Krauskopf from the Mathematics Department. While in Auckland she is working on the theoretical understanding and bifurcation analysis of coupled mode-locked lasers which are integrated semiconductor lasers with absorbing and amplifying sections. The goal is to predict optimal  operation regimes for regular optical pulse trains, i.e. pulse trains with small timing jitter as needed for example for optical data communication. The project is separated into three main parts which are traditionally established in three different communities: mathematical bifurcation analysis, numerical modelling of photonic devices, and experimental photonics.

In November 2016, Dr Reece Miller from the University of Otago was awarded a Research Fellowship to work with Professor Nils Metzler-Nolte at the Ruhr-Universität Bochum. During his PhD, Reece investigated inorganic complexes capable of electrochemical and/or magnetic switching. At Bochum, he plans to apply these skills in the development of electrochemically activated antimicrobial agents in an attempt to counter antibiotic resistance.

In February 2016, Prof. Nicolas Cullen from the University of Otago
received a  Humboldt  Research Fellowship for Experienced Research to conduct research with Professor Thomas Mölg at the Friedrich-Alexander-University Erlangen-Nuremberg. The aim of the research is to determine the physical processes governing glacier advance and retreat in the Southern Alps (the effect and “local footprint”) by revealing how modes of climate variability (the cause) impact weather and climate over a hierarchy of space-time scales.

In February 2016, three Feoder Lynen Fellows joined the CTCP at Massey University: Dr. Paul Jerabek from the Philipps University of Marburg, Dr. Jan Mewes from the University of Heidelberg, both collaborating with Prof. Peter Schwerdtfeger, and Dr. Thomas Engl from the University of Regensburg collaborating with Prof. Sergej Flach.