Birkbeck psychologist recognised for outstanding contribution to the study of infants

Dr Sarah Lloyd-Fox will receive the Wiley Prize in Psychology from the British Academy in recognition of her distinction in research into infant cognitive development.

Dr Sarah Lloyd-Fox will receive the Wiley Prize in Psychology from the British Academy in recognition of her outstanding contribution to the study of infants.

The prizes will be awarded at a ceremony at the British Academy in central London on Tuesday 25 September. The British Academy prizes and medals recognise individuals for their distinction in – and dedication to – the subjects.

Dr Lloyd-Fox has recently led a project exploring the levels of brain activity in babies in response to social stimuli such as peek-a-boo and the sound of laughter, finding what could be the earliest marker of autism to date.

She said: “I am delighted to be receiving the British Academy’s Wiley Prize in Psychology this year. As a female scientist working across the fields of psychology, neuroscience and medical physics, I feel proud to have been honoured with this award – particularly as it also reflects a time in my life when I have started a family and striven to balance part-time work with raising two young boys.

“Birkbeck, and in particular the Centre for Brain and Cognitive Development, have been formative in helping forge my early career in developmental neuroscience by providing an inspirational environment for discussion, debate and collaboration.”

Professor Sir David Cannadine, historian and President of the British Academy, will host the ceremony next month which will see a total of 19 people awarded in different categories. He said: “The British Academy exists to champion the humanities and social sciences in all areas of our national life, and so it is a great pleasure to present these awards to such an outstanding and inspiring group.

“Be they journalists or historians, economists or theologians, this year’s winners have excelled in their respective academic fields, while at the same time furthering public understanding of the humanities and social sciences. And at a time when institutions are distrusted and derided, when expertise is mocked and scorned, and when the humanities and social sciences are all too frequently dismissed in the corridors of power as trivial or recreational pursuits, such achievements ought to be celebrated.

“I extend my heartiest congratulations and warmest wishes to each of the winners.”

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