UL Researchers Receive SFI Principal Investigator Awards

Professor James Gleeson

Two UL researchers have received prestigious SFI Investigator Awards at a cermemony in Dublin today, 21st September. Minister for Training, Skills, Innovation, Research and Development, John Halligan TD announced an investment of €43 million in 26 research projects through the SFI Investigators Programme. The research projects will support 94 research positions over the next five years.

In his project Professor James Gleeson and his team in the University of Limerick will develop new mathematical models to help revolutionise the understanding of how information spreads online.

They will develop an algorithm to identify the users of social networks who are the “superspreaders”, i.e., users whose retweets can make information travel faster than everyone else.

A better understanding of how information spreads through social influence will help us find ways to spread important information more quickly (e.g., for health or terrorism alerts), and to control undesirable aspects of social media such as the spreading of misinformation and false rumours.

Professor James Glesson and his team are based in the Mathematics Applications Consortium for Science and Industry (MACSI) in the University of Limerick. MACSI is the foremost applied and industrial mathematics research group in Ireland.

Professor Michael Zaworotko of the Bernal Institute and co-director of the Synthesis and Solid State Pharmaceutical Centre (SSPC) received an award to investigate Green Adsorbents for Clean Energy. Prof.  Zaworotko currently serves as Bernal Chair of Crystal Engineering & Science Foundation of Ireland Research Professor at UL.

Research activities have focused upon fundamental and applied aspects of crystal engineering since 1990. Currently, metal-organic materials (MOMs), especially microporous and nanoporous sorbents, and multi-component pharmaceutical materials (MPMs) such as cocrystals, hydrates and ionic cocrystals are of particular interest.

Prof. Zaworotko has published over 390 peer reviewed papers, review articles and patents that have been cited  more than 35,500 times. In 2011 Thomson-Reuters listed him as the 20th highest impact chemist since 2000 and in 2014, 2015 and 2016 he was listed as a highly cited researcher also by Thomson Reuters.