St Andrews astronomer goes global

Wednesday 1 February 2012

Dr Martin Dominik

A University of St Andrews astronomer has been named one of the best young voices of science in the world.

Dr Martin Dominik has been appointed to a prestigious body that aims to empower the best young scientists working around the globe.

Dr Dominik, a researcher at the University’s School of Physics & Astronomy, is the first Scottish-based academic to be made a member of The Global Young Academy.

Selected in his ‘creative prime’, Dr Dominik joins an elite group that includes just five other researchers from the rest of the UK.

Since arriving in St Andrews in 2003, Dr Dominik has been at the forefront of the search for new planets. He played a key role in the discovery of the most Earth-like planet found to date at the time of its announcement in 2006. The researcher was co-leader of the international team that first discovered the planet, named OGLE-2005-BLG-390Lb.

Earlier this month, Dr Dominik’s role in an international study that carried out an ‘opinion survey’ of the skies was reported. The study suggests that there are hundreds of planets in the Milky Way alone that are yet to be discovered.

On hearing of his appointment, the Royal Society University Research Fellow commented, “We all share this wee blue planet, and the problems we are facing neither follow political nor disciplinary boundaries.

“I am much looking forward to exchanging thoughts within the diverse membership of the Global Young Academy and further developing a holistic approach to research and education.”

The Global Young Academy is part of the international Young Academy movement that pulls together a global network of more than 100 science academies around the world.

Launched in 2010, its primary aim is to unlock the potential of young scientists, by bringing them together to address topics of global importance. By uniting the best international talent, it is hoped that the elite group can provide new insights on the major challenges facing science in education, policy and international issues.

A strong advocate of the importance of science communication, Dr Dominik was selected for his excellence and commitment to his field of science. He joins 171 leading young scientists from 54 countries and six continents.

Welcoming the news, St Andrews Deputy Principal and Vice Principal (Research), Professor Chris Hawkesworth, commented, “We are extremely proud that one of our own scientists has been made the first Scottish-based researcher to join this elite group of leading thinkers around the globe.

“It is testament to the both Dr Dominik’s research strengths and his commitment to science communication that he has been selected to lead the field in this country.

“We wish him well in his new role in this important new network of the very best scientists in the world.”

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Notes to Editors

The Young Global Academy was founded with the support of the Inter-Academy panel, a global network of 100 science academies including The Royal Society.

Dr Dominik is available for interview on 07777 6425 64 or email [email protected]

Note to Picture Editors

Images of Dr Dominik are available from the Press Office – contacts below.

Issued by the Press Office

Contact Gayle Cook on 01334 467227, 07900 050 103 [email protected]

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