Professor Katherine Freese
Professor Katherine Freese

Stockholm University has been granted 101.5 million SEK for a ten-year-period by the Swedish Research Council in order to recruit Professor Katherine Freese, currently with the University of Michigan, USA, to the Department of Physics at Stockholm University and the Oskar Klein Centre.

Identifying the dark matter

The work of Katherine Freese comprises theoretical cosmoparticle physics, and her research program focusses on identifying the dark matter that constitutes the major part of the mass in the universe and in our galaxy. Katherine Freese has already been appointed to supersede Larus Thorlacius as Director of Nordita, the Nordic Institute for Theoretical Physics, co-hosted by Stockholm University and KTH, the Royal Institute of Technology.

“Together with the Oskar Klein Centre for Cosmoparticle Physics, Stockholm University has the potential to become the leading international centre for Cosmology and Particle Astrophysics. The recruitment of Professor Freese is an important step towards this”, says Vice-Chancellor Astrid Söderberg Widding.

Attract leading international researchers to Sweden

The aim of the Swedish Research Council grant is to give Swedish higher education institutions a long-term opportunity to attract leading international researchers to Sweden. With the help of the grant, a leading international researcher should be able to move his or her research to the higher education institution that applies for the funds for the recruitment.

In March of this year, Stockholm University received 125 million SEK from the same grant to recruit Anders Nilsson, another top researcher currently working at Stanford University. His group of researchers have published a report about the structure of water, which was widely acclaimed. The recruitment strengthens the University’s position within atomic and molecular physics research, and it is important for the development of the free-electron x-ray laser-based research and the coming synchrotron light source MAX IV in Lund.

Increasing support for research

The Swedish government’s increasing support for research was recently highlighted in an article in University World News where Stockholm University’s Vice-Chancellor Astrid Söderberg Widding was quoted.