I am a philosopher with a broad range of interests, for whom philosophy involves a sustained, critical engagement with other fields and disciplines, but also with its own present. I was trained in phenomenology, and continue to value the rigour of this school of thought. But my conception and practice of philosophy of the last ten years can be defined as broadly critical, where critique means the critique of ourselves—our ways of thinking, understanding who we are, governing ourselves and others—with a view to living more independent, empowered, and lucid lives. My most recent research has focused on desire as a process of subjectivation and emancipation; on the harmful forces, such as stupidity and spite, which diminish our ability to think, and therefore our agency; on crisis as a new and permanent way of life.
ICREA is an expanding community. Each year, new research professors join ICREA after the ICREA senior call. This is a list of the most recent incorporations. We would like give them all a very warm welcome to the ICREA community: Benvinguts!
Carlos' goal is to address problems of social significance through computational methods and interdisciplinary research, and his current focus is on algorithmic fairness. His background is web mining and information retrieval, and he has been influential in the areas of crisis informatics and web content quality and credibility. He is a prolific, highly cited researcher who has received two test-of-time awards, four best paper awards, and two best student paper awards. His works include a book on Big Crisis Data, as well as monographs on Information and Influence Propagation, and Adversarial Web Search. He currently leads the Web Science and Social Computing group at Universitat Pompeu Fabra.
I am a mathematician and software engineer turned language scientist, and my research is very much still shaped by this background. I mainly use data science, statistics and computer models to investigate the patterns of linguistic diversity, and the processes that shape the origins and evolution of language and of languages. In particular, I look at how very weak biases, rooted in our culture, cognition and biology, are sometimes amplified by the repeated use and transmission of language in complex and dynamic communities, resulting in large-scale cross-linguistic variation. In the meantime, I try to argue that language and speech are really old, and that our evolutionary cousins, including the Neanderthals and the Denisovans, probably also told fascinating stories around campfires using fairly complex languages.
I am a climate scientist, and my research focuses on understanding and predicting how extreme climate events such as heatwaves, heavy rainfall and storms will change in the coming years and decades. This involves studying weather and climate processes that drive or amplify such extreme events, and how they are affected by climate variability and long-term climate change related to global warming. I also study the feasibility of land-based approaches to mitigate climate change by removing and storing carbon dioxide from the atmosphere, and how these mitigation approaches are affected by climate-related risks. I implement my research at the Barcelona Supercomputing Center, where I co-lead the Climate Prediction Group - a research group currently consisting of 20 postdoctoral researchers, PhD students and technical support staff.
Ciska Kemper is an astrophysicist, working in an interdisciplinary research area, connecting with chemistry, solid state physics and mineralogy. She is interested in the formation and processing of mineral dust grains in space. She uses ground- and space-based infrared and submillimetre facilities to observe the characteristic signature of different mineralogical components of interstellar dust. She currently focuses on the crystallization and amorphization of silicates. Measuring the crystalline fraction of interstellar silicates can reveal the thermal processing history of the dust grains, as the dust provides a record of the physical conditions it has experienced. She is also interested in silicate nanoclusters, which represent the intermediate phase between the molecular gas and bulk silicate material. With the launch of the James Webb Space Telescope and upcoming capabilities of ground-based millimeter telescopes, detecting this missing link is becoming possible.
Rachel’s research involves modelling the impact of environmental change on infectious disease epidemics, to inform disease control and prevention strategies. She has published high impact research on modelling climate-sensitive disease risk, with a focus on integrating seasonal climate forecasts in dengue early warning systems in the Americas and Southeast Asia. She is the Executive Director of the Lancet Countdown in Europe, a transdisciplinary collaboration tracking progress on health and climate change. In 2018, she won the International Society for Neglected Tropical Diseases (ISNTD) Water Award for Research, in recognition of the quality of her research on the linkages between hydrometeorological extremes and dengue outbreaks and the multi-sectoral relevance for policy and practice.
Kasper Moth-Poulsen’s research focus on the development of new functional materials. He is using a combination of traditional synthetic methods and flow chemistry to create materials for solar energy storage, sensing and catalysis. He is the PI of an ERC StG and a CoG (2021-2026).
Francisco Ortega research focuses on the interactions between global biopsychiatry and local psychiatric epistemologies. His work examines the extent to which global mental health initiatives appropriately address mental health challenges in the global South, with a focus on the role of culture in mental health. To that end, he explores the historical roots, and the political and epistemological aspects present in the discussion about cultural diversity and mental health, and investigates experiences in public mental health that incorporate the cultural dimension. His research assumes that integrating cultural studies in mental health can help describe and interpret the complexity of the issues involved in mental health care in global times. He is currently conducting research in Brazil.
My research is inspired by nature and uses its design principles to create materials that seamlessly interface with living matter to develop new paradigms for biomaterials and biomedicine. I focus on introducing new concepts for biointerfaces and “quasi-living” synthetic cells that can harbor selective interactions with cells and tissues. These synthetic cells will enable biologically inspired but augmented or even completely new functions to open new horizons for biomedicine, sensing, and therapeutics. Moreover, this research holds promise to unveil some of the most daunting questions related to the origin of life, the transition from inanimate to living, and the emergence of diseases.
Leticia Tarruell is an experimental physicist. She uses ultracold (nanokelvin) atomic gases to synthesize artificial quantum matter and investigate the properties of quantum many-body systems. Her research thus lies at the crossing between quantum optics and condensed-matter physics. Currently, she is particularly interested in the investigation of unconventional superfluid phases, such as ultradilute quantum liquids, chiral Bose-Einstein condensates and topological superfluids, in mixtures of quantum gases in the continuum (ERC Consolidator grant 2021-2026), and in the microscopic study of quantum magnetism with large spin Fermi gases in optical lattices.