University of Leicester’s Dr Marianne Hem Eriksen selected to create programmes for BBC Radio 3

An academic from University of Leicester has been selected as one of ten BBC New Generation Thinkers 2023.

Dr Marianne Hem Eriksen, Associate Professor of Archaeology at University of Leicester is one of ten academics across the UK to be selected.

The prestigious scheme, developed alongside the Arts and Humanities Research Council (AHRC), offers early career researchers the opportunity to develop programmes for the BBC.

Dr Eriksen was awarded the Philip Leverhulme Prize for Archaeology last autumn, alongside fellow University of Leicester archaeologist, Dr Sarah Inskip. Dr Eriksen's research focuses on the archaeology of the Viking Age and Scandinavian prehistory, and she heads the ERC-funded research project 'Body-Politics'.

Originally from Oslo, Norway, Dr Eriksen joined the University of Leicester in 2021.

As part of the BBC platforms: New Generation Thinkers 2023, Dr Eriksen will use her research to develop programmes for BBC Radio 3.

The AHRC says that the New Generation Thinkers "represent some of the brightest scholars in the country and their research has the potential to redefine our understanding of an array of topics, from history to the way we speak."

Dr Marianne Hem Eriksen said: “Coming from a country of five million people, it feels rather astonishing to be selected as one of ten BBC New Generation Thinkers.

“This amazing opportunity provided by the BBC and AHRC will allow me not only to share some of the research my team and I do, but hopefully also how deep-time perspectives can enrich and challenge current debate more broadly.

“What I love about archaeology is that it makes you recognize that none of the norms or institutions we take for granted are 'natural' or universal. Personhood, gender relations, the family -- all of these vary wildly across time and space, which is what makes studying the past so exciting.”

Professor Huw Barton, Head of the School of Archaeology and Ancient History at University of Leicester said: "It is a real honour to have such talented scholars at Leicester and to see them finding a voice in a wide variety of social platforms. The idea of the public intellectual is such an important one for society, as these people can really forge connections with the wider public and show the relevance of what we do and change the way people see the world and themselves."

Professor Philip Baker, Pro Vice-Chancellor for Research and Enterprise at University of Leicester Said: "Dr Eriksen's recent achievements demonstrate the fantastic work being done by the University of Leicester to develop and encourage the next generation of public-facing academics. I am excited to see Dr Eriksen have the opportunity to share her ground-breaking research with a wider audience."