First Clare Boothe Luce Assistant Professorships Announced

Professorships for women aim to increase gender diversity in the physical sciences

The Physical Sciences Division at the University of Chicago, in partnership with the Henry Luce Foundation and the Office of the Provost, has named the first Clare Boothe Luce Assistant Professors: Chihway Chang and Irina Zhuravleva of the Department of Astronomy & Astrophysics.

“We are delighted to name Chihway Chang and Irina Zhuravleva as Clare Boothe Luce Assistant Professors,” said John Carlstrom, chair of the Department of Astronomy & Astrophysics.  “They are science communicators and researchers of the highest caliber and will contribute their unique and complementary strengths to the department.”

The Henry Luce Foundation granted $500,000 for the establishment of the Clare Boothe Luce Professorships for women in the Departments of Astronomy & Astrophysics and Physics, supporting the initiative to significantly increase gender diversity of faculty members across the Physical Sciences Division by 2023. The Physical Sciences Division and the Office of the Provost will provide additional programmatic and financial support to ensure the success of the two new faculty members.

“We’ve partnered with the Henry Luce Foundation and the Office of the Provost to address the gender gap in the physical sciences,” said Angela V. Olinto, dean of the Physical Sciences Division. “The Clare Boothe Luce Professorships will help women scientists emerge as leaders in male-dominated fields and inspire the next generation of women to pursue research in basic sciences.” 

Clare Boothe Luce, the widow of Henry R. Luce, was a playwright, journalist, ambassador to Italy, and the first woman elected to the U.S. Congress from the state of Connecticut. The Clare Boothe Luce program, established at the Henry Luce Foundation in 1987, offers research awards and tuition support to prepare young women to study and teach in the STEM disciplines, as well as five-year professorships for women early in their academic careers.

Chihway Chang

Chihway Chang

Chihway Chang’s research focuses on constraining cosmology and galaxy evolution models using galaxy surveys and the cosmic microwave background. A common theme in her work is the application of weak gravitational lensing techniques. She holds a Ph.D. from Stanford University and a B.S. from National Taiwan University. Prior to her appointment in the Department of Astronomy and Astrophysics, Chang served as a KICP fellow at the University of Chicago and a postdoctoral fellow at the Institute of Astronomy at ETH Zurich. She is a member of the Dark Energy Survey and the Large Synoptics Survey Telescope Dark Energy Science Collaboration.

Irina Zhuravleva

Irina Zhuravleva

Irina Zhuravleva’s research interests are high-energy astrophysics and X-ray astronomy. She studies physics of clusters of galaxies, including interactions between galaxies and supermassive black holes, turbulence, and radiative transfer. She holds a Ph.D. from Ludwig-Maximilian University and Max Planck Institute for Astrophysics and a M.Sc. from Saint Petersburg State University. Prior to her appointment at UChicago, Zhuravleva worked as a research associate at the Kavli Institute for Particle Astrophysics and Cosmology at Stanford University. She is also a participating scientist in a collaborative JAXA/NASA X-ray mission, X-ray Imaging and Spectroscopy Mission (XRISM), which will be launch in early 2022.