Inspirefest 2017

Dame Jocelyn Bell Burnell 

Astrophysicist, Oxford University 

Belfast native Dame Jocelyn Bell Burnell is currently visiting professor of astrophysics at the University of Oxford, and a fellow of Mansfield College.

In the late 1960s, she was awarded a PhD in radio astronomy from University of Cambridge. During her time at Cambridge, she was involved in the discovery of pulsars, opening up a new branch of astrophysics. This breakthrough has been lauded as one of the greatest astronomical discoveries of the 20th century, and led to the awarding of a Nobel Prize to her supervisor. Bell Burnell herself has received many prestigious prizes and awards, including an honorary degree from University College Dublin.

From 2008 to 2011, she was the first female president of the Institute of Physics of the UK and Ireland. She was also elected pro-chancellor of Trinity College Dublin in 2013. The following year, Bell Burnell was named as one of’s 100 Top Women in STEM.

You can watch her Inspirefest 2015 keynote here.