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Doctoral College

Times Higher Education Awards 2023: Julia Hörnle Nominated for PGR Supervisor of the Year

Widely recognised as the 'Oscars of higher education', the Awards attracts hundreds of entries that exemplify the talent, commitment and innovation of individuals and teams across all aspects of university life.


Julia Hörnle, Professor of Internet Law at Queen Mary’s Centre for Commercial Law Studies, was the overall winner of the outstanding research supervisor award, making her the best research supervisor at Queen Mary. She distinguished herself as an outstanding supervisor for going above and beyond the high standards of care and competence that characterise all supervisors at QM. Throughout her career she provided students with pastoral care and feedback that were thorough, rigorous, considered, inclusive, and imaginative; and she took a proactive approach in steering her PhD candidates towards career development. Not only Julia encouraged students to publish in high quality journals, to apply for grants and for fellowships, but as one of her nominees says “she taught me how to do those things”. Julia herself was successful in obtaining external funds for PhD students - despite the limited and highly competitive PGR funding landscape for the Humanities and Social Sciences - and in supporting others in the drafting of funding proposal, which were all granted. Her supervised students have now posts in academia, law firms, other private companies, or have set up their own business.

What further differentiates Julia is her ability to create a disciplinary research environment which fosters the co-creation of knowledge, research and job opportunities, and impact activities between PhD students, supervisor, and external partners. By treating her supervisees as respected colleagues, she also integrates them in her own research network and projects, or enables them to carve out their own space and opportunities within those organisations. As many nominees have commented, without her funding, career, or pastoral efforts they would “not have been able to do the Phd”.

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