IG Nobel event (image)

4 April 2013 | IET London: Savoy Place, UK

Speaker biographies


Marc Abrahams (photo)

Marc Abrahams

Marc Abrahams is editor and co-founder of the science humor magazine Annals of Improbable Research (AIR) and its web site, www.improbable.com and Internet TV series, and the new book This Is Improbable, and a columnist for the British newspaper The Guardian. He writes about research that makes people laugh, and then think.

Marc is the father and master of ceremonies of the Ig Nobel Prize Ceremony, honoring achievements that make people LAUGH, and then THINK. The Prizes are handed out by genuine Nobel Laureates at a gala ceremony held each autumn at Harvard University and broadcast on National Public Radio and on the Internet.


Siobhan Abeyesinghe (photo)

Siobhan Abeyesinghe

Siobhan graduated from University of Newcastle in 1994 with a degree in Animal Science. She then went on to complete an MSc in Applied Animal Behaviour and Welfare at University of Edinburgh (1995) culminating in a research project at the Macaulay Institute on the welfare of red deer at lairage.

Following her PhD work on poultry behaviour and welfare with Professor Christine Nicol at University of Bristol and Professor Christopher Wathes, then of Silsoe Research Institute (2000) she joined Professor Wathes' research group as a postdoctoral researcher in poultry cognition and demonstrated that hens can show self-control.

In 2005 she joined the Royal Veterinary College to form the Centre for Animal Welfare with a small team of other scientists and in 2008 was appointed as an RCUK Fellow in Animal Behaviour and Welfare. She is also the UFAW Link Representative at the college.


Charlotte Burn (photo)

Charlotte Burn

Charlotte joined the Royal Veterinary College as a Research Fellow in December 2008, and became a Lecturer in October 2010. Previously, she was a post-doctoral researcher at the University of Bristol in the animal welfare research group, led by Dr Helen (Becky) Whay.

Her D.Phil., awarded in 2006, was at the University of Oxford in the Department of Zoology, where she was supervised by Prof. Georgia Mason. She obtained an M.Sc. in Applied Animal Behaviour and Animal Welfare from the University of Edinburgh, and a B.A. in Biological Sciences at the University of Oxford.

You can find out more about Charlotte's research at her webpage, here. Charlotte's published discoveries are summarised in a nutshell here.


Chris McManus (photo)

Chris McManus

Chris McManus, the 2002 Ig Nobel medicine prize winner (for his study Scrotal Asymmetry in Man and Ancient Sculpture). He trained as a doctor and then a psychologist, and is currently Professor of Psychology and Medical Education at University College London.

He has several different research interests including medical education, experimental aesthetics, and lateralisation, the latter of which was the basis for his book Right Hand, Left Hand: The origins of asymmetry in brains, bodies, atoms and cultures (2002), which won the 2003 Aventis Prize for a popular science book.

In 2002 he was awarded an Ignobel Prize for his research on scrotal asymmetry in ancient sculpture, working carried out in the mid-1970s.


Dan Schreiber (photo)

Dan Schreiber

Dan Schreiber is a man of many talents, he is a writer, producer, presenter and most notably a funny man. Dan was brought up in Hong Kong and Australia before moving to England, where at just 19 he became a question writer for the BBC TV series QI and has since jumped straight into a career with the cream of British entertainment.

Dan is the co-creator and producer of BBC Radio 4’s highly successful ‘The Museum of Curiosity’, which started in 2008 and has now just completed its 4thseries. Hosted by Blackadder producer John Lloyd, the show has also seen Bill Bailey, Sean Lock and Jon Richardson as guest hosts. The Radio Times review stated that: “It will make you laugh as much as it will make you think. Pornography for the brain!”

Allied with his sharp wit, his encyclopaedic knowledge of facts gained during his QI days, neatly combined with his observational style humour, makes for an exceptional new kind of television personality and with a number of show ideas in development with various producers, 2012 is set to be an exciting time for Dan.