I’m currently working as a post-doctoral fellow in the History of Science at the Leeds and Humanities Research Institute (LAHRI), at the University of Leeds. Broadly speaking my research area falls within the remit of the history of biology and history of technology in the twentieth century. More specifically I have specialist knowledge in the areas of electron microscopy and cellular and molecular biology, women in science and visual culture.
I recently studied for a PhD in the History of Science at the University of Leeds. Here my research focused on Professor Irene Manton (1904-1988) who was the first female professor at the University of Leeds ––still a rare position for a woman at the time. Manton distinguished herself in her work on the cytotaxonomy of ferns and post-WWII she was a pioneer of the new field of electron microscopy within biology. Here Manton made fundamental discoveries in cell biology. I’ve presented my research to international conferences and have published the following articles:
Williams, Nicola (2016) ‘Irene Manton, Erwin Schrödinger and the Puzzle of Chromosome Structure’ Journal of the History of Biology, 49, (3), pp. 425-459 (doi: 10.1007/s10739-015-9424-5). https://rdcu.be/6htT
Articles and Contributions
Williams, Nicola (2018) ‘Irene Manton, FRS (1904–1988)’ in, Leeds: Cradle of Innovation, Rachel Unsworth (ed.), Leeds Sustainable Development Group, pp. 202-3 (ISBN: 978-0-9539745-4-2)
Williams, Nicola (2016) ‘Irene Manton: A Leeds Biologist Who Made Her Mark’ February 2016, North Leeds Life, p. 8. https://issuu.com/northleedslife/docs/2016_february_b
I have qualifications in microbiology and diagnostic radiography, and I’ve previously worked in academic publishing and as a hospital radiographer. I’m interested in communicating science to both a professional and a general audience and my background enables me to be flexible in writing across the health and life sciences and about science and technology.
In my spare time I enjoy walking in the countryside with my pet Labrador, reading and socializing. I am also mum to two girls both of whom like science!