Vivienne Cox

1977, Chemistry

Energy expert and former BP Executive

Vivienne Cox (1977, Chemistry) is former CEO and Vice-President of BP Alternative Energy. From 1996, Vivienne managed the development of new business in Central and Eastern Europe, before pulling together all of BP’s trading activities into a single organisation which she led until 2006.

Until recently, she served as Chair of Climate Change Capital, and currently sits on the Board of Rio Tinto plc. She is a non-executive director of the Department for International Development, and sits on the Airports Commission with responsibility for developing ideas to maintain the UK’s status as an international hub for aviation. She is also on the board of BG Group, Pearson and has recently been appointed Chairman of Vallourec SA, a French company in the CAC40.

Jane Platt

1975, Modern Languages

Chief Executive, National Savings & Investments

Businesswoman Jane Platt, CBE, is Chief Executive of the state-owned savings bank, National Savings and Investments (NS&I), one of the country's biggest savings institutions. NS&I is responsible for looking after some £100bn in savings for around 25 million people. 

Jane began her career as a fund manager in the City, most notably investing pension fund portfolios for Mercury Asset Management. She was appointed to run NS&I in 2006, having previously grown Barclays Stockbrokers as Chief Executive. She is now also a non-executive director of the Financial Conduct Authority and an advisory board member of Women in Banking and Finance.

Penny Handford

BSc, PhD S'ton, MA Oxf


I teach a range of tutorial topics on the Molecular and Cellular biochemistry course, 1st year- molecular cell biology, 2nd year, primer design and aspects of protein purification and 3rd year, extracellular matrix in health and disease. I lecture on the Biochemistry course to the 1st years and 3rd years. I host 4th year undergraduate students for their 18 week research projects.

About me

I have been Tutor in Biochemistry at St Catherine’s since October 1998; before that I was a Royal Society University Research Fellow in the Sir William Dunn School of Pathology, University of Oxford.  I was awarded the personal title of Professor in the 2004 Recognition of Distinction exercise at the University of Oxford.


My long term interest has been in understanding molecular mechanisms underlying human disease. My early work focussed on haemophilia B and Marfan syndrome. My main research interests currently are i)  cell- extracellular matrix interactions in health and disease ( Marfan syndrome, acromelic dysplasias) and ii) cell surface organisation and regulation of  the Notch receptor and its ligands ( Alagille syndrome). My work is currently funded by MRC, CRUK and Arthritis Research UK.

Graduate Teaching

I have DPhil students and post-doctoral research assistants in my laboratory working on aspects of my research interests. I am college advisor to graduate students at St Catherine’s in the Medical sciences division.

Wolfson Fellow and Tutor in Biochemistry
Professor of Biochemistry

Fram Dinshaw

MA, DPhil Oxf

I came to St Catherine’s as a Junior Research Fellow in English Literature in 1979 and have been an Official fellow since 1984 and Finance Bursar since 1987. My research interests have included George Herbert and C17th English Literature, as well as the career of Kenneth Clark, and patronage and the arts in the Twentieth Century.



Finance Bursar

Christoph Reisinger

MA Oxf, Dr phil Heidelberg, Dipl Linz


I currently teach undergraduate classes and tutorials in applied mathematics and lecture Masters courses in mathematical and computational finance.

About me

I am a member of the Mathematical and Computational Finance Group at the Mathematical Institute of the University of Oxford, and have a doctorate in Mathematics from the University in Heidelberg.

My research covers various aspects of the development, analysis and implementation of numerical algorithms for partial differential equations and stochastic (partial) differential equations, such as those arising in financial engineering.

I serve as Co-Editor-in-Chief of Applied Mathematical Finance and am on the Editorial Board of the Journal of Computational Finance and the International Journal of Computer Mathematics.

Graduate teaching

I have supervised graduate students at Masters and PhD level in numerical analysis, scientific computing and computational finance and would welcome prospective students in these areas.

Fellow and Tutor in Mathematics
Professor of Applied Mathematics


Grunnfag Oslo, BA Yale, MA, DPhil Oxf


I teach the Prelims Victorian and Modern literature papers at Catz, as well as selected FHS papers on special topics such as Literature and Science, Fin de Siècle Literature and Modern Drama.  My lectures in the Faculty of English cover topics in modern drama and in literature and science from the nineteenth century to the present.

I supervise D Phil students working on a range of topics in modern drama and in literature and science.  I also regularly co-convene the Post-1900 M St and teach C-course options on modern British drama, Victorian theatre, Drama since 1945, and Women and Theatre.

About me

I received my BA in English from Yale University and then worked for two years in the publishing house Alfred A Knopf, Inc in New York City before graduate studies at the University of Oslo (on a Fulbright Grant) and then Oxford, where I received my D Phil in English.  Prior to coming to Oxford in 2007, I taught at the University of Birmingham in the Department of Drama and Theatre Arts.  Before that I taught at North Carolina State University in the Department of English, at the University of Pennsylvania, and at the Curtis Institute of Music in Philadelphia.

In addition to my roles within the Faculty and the college, I serve as the Knowledge Exchange and Public Engagement Champion for the Humanities at Oxford (2015-17).


There are three main strands to my research.  One is the study of theatre and science, looking at the ways in which plays and performances have engaged with scientific ideas.  My book Theatre and Evolution from Ibsen to Beckett (Columbia University Press, 2015) investigates the interaction between theatre and evolutionary theory since the 1840s, encompassing the full spectrum of theories (Lamarck, Darwin, Haeckel, DeVries, Huxley, Wallace and many others) and a wide variety of dramatic modes and playwrights, some well known and some forgotten.  The project was supported by a Leverhulme Research Fellowship in 2011-12.  My book Science on Stage: From Doctor Faustus to Copenhagen (Princeton University Press, 2006; paperback 2012) traces the development of the "science play" since the Renaissance and was the first full-length study of this genre.  I have published articles on theatre and science in American Scientist, Nature, Gramma, Interdisciplinary Science Reviews, Women: A Cultural Review and elsewhere.  In addition I co-edited two special issues of Interdisciplinary Science Reviews on "New Directions in Theatre and Science" in 2013 and 2014.

I also work on Ibsen’s plays.  My book Ibsen and Early Modernist Theatre, 1890-1900 (1997) explores how Ibsen’s plays were staged and critically received in England and France in the context of the incipient modernist theatre.  Articles I have published in this area have appeared in Theatre Research International, Ibsen Studies, Nordic Theatre Studies, and elsewhere.  I convened the Ibsen Network at Oxford funded by TORCH (2013-15) and have just been awarded funding for a new Nordic Network which I co-convene with colleagues across the Humanities division:

The third key research interest for me is in the role of theatrical performance in the historiography of modernism, and I have published on this topic in journals such as Modernist Cultures and Theatre Research International.

Fellow and Tutor in English
Professor of English and Theatre Studies
Knowledge Exchange and Public Engagement Champion for the Humanities Division

Marc Mulholland

BA, MA, PhD Belf, MA Oxf


In Prelims (First Year) I teach:

Approaches to History


General History IV (1815-1914)

British History VI (1815-1924)

British History VII (1914 - )

Optional Subject: Theories of the State (Aristotle, Hobbes, Rousseau, Marx)

Option Subject: The Rise and Fall of European Socialisms


In FHS (Final Honours School, Second and Third Year) I teach:

Disciplines of History

General History XII 1856-1914

General History XIII 1914-1944

General History XIV 1944-1973

British History VI (1815-1924)

British History VII (1914 - )

Further Subject: Nationalism, Politics and Culture in Ireland, c. 1870-1921

Special Subject: The Northern Ireland Troubles, 1965-1985

About me

The son of a forester and a primary school teacher, I was born in Ireland. I took my degrees up to PhD at the Queen’s University of Belfast.

Recent work includes:

Bourgeois Liberty and the politics of Fear: From Absolutism to Neo-Conservatism (Oxford, 2012)

‘Inventing the Working Class’ [Review Essay on Marx], Dublin Review of Books, August 2013

Terence O’Neill: Life and Times (Dublin, 2013)


About half the time, I work on Irish History in the nineteenth and twentieth centuries. Otherwise I’m researching the history of political thought since the French Revolution. Currently I have two projects underway: Irish peasant activism in the 1880s, and leftist attitudes internationally to the proletarian working-class.

Graduate teaching

I have supervised graduate students at Masters and PhD level on nineteenth and twentieth Irish history and leftist political thought, and would welcome prospective students in these areas.



Wolfson Fellow and Tutor in History
Professor of Modern History
Senior Tutor

The Year

The Year is our annual College record, but it's more than just an annual review. It's a snapshot of life at St Catz, with contributions from Fellows, students and Alumni. You can read our latest edition of The Year by clicking on the image to the right. Past issues can be found in our archive below.  


How do I apply to the Graduate Research Expenses Fund?

A small fund exists to which graduates may apply for help with research expenses, particularly for fieldwork, attendance at conferences, or visiting libraries with material unobtainable in Oxford. It can also be used for help towards the costs of books, printing, photocopying, thesis binding and continuation charges.

Full-time graduate students accrue an entitlement to claim £203 for each year that they have been enrolled and paying University and College fees for their current programme of study, up to a maximum of three years, and part-time graduate students accrue an entitlement to claim £101.50 for each year that they have been enrolled and paying University and College fees for their current programme of study, up to a maximum of six years. This amount may be carried forward if it was not spent in the year in which it was accrued, but it cannot be carried forward to a new programme of study, and the student must be a current enrolled graduate member of the University to be eligible to apply. A claim may be submitted at any point during the academic year.

Students should apply in writing to the Academic Office (Email:, giving details of the amount of funding required and the use to which it will be put, together with their bank details. A letter of support from the student's supervisor must also be supplied. Afterwards the applicant should supply (copies of) receipts and a brief write-up.

Applicants are expected to apply to their Department or Faculty as well as to the College for financial support.

Richard Todd

MA Camb, MA status, DPhil Oxf


I have been teaching in Oxford for 18 years.  The main subjects I cover in tutorials concern the links between materials processing, microstructure and mechanical properties. I give lecture courses in the Department of Materials on Engineering Ceramics (3rd year), Fracture and Fatigue (2nd year) and Creep and Superplasticity (2nd year). I also run a workshop for research students on how to write and publish scientific papers.

About me

I studied Natural Science at Cambridge and after a few years in the electronics industry came to Oxford to do a Doctorate in superplastic metals. After 5 years of a permanent position at Manchester University, I returned to Oxford to take up my present post in 1999.

I received the Pfeil Award of the Institute of Materials 2001 for published work in ceramics and the Verulam Medal and Prize of the Institute of Materials, Minerals and Mining 2012 in recognition of distinguished contributions to ceramics.  I am a Fellow of the European Ceramic Society - ECERS (2013) and Senior Editor of the Journal of the European Ceramic Society (2011- present).


My research concerns the mechanical properties and processing of ceramics and metals. Current interests include ceramic – carbon nanotube composites and ceramics with microstructures inspired by natural materials such as bone and seashells, mechanical testing and stress measurement in ceramics at the microscale so that the properties of the individual building blocks of materials can be understood, the impact performance of ceramics for use as armour for personnel and vehicles, polycrystalline diamond for the ultimate hard cutting tool, new methods of making ceramics such as "flash sintering" and “cold sintering” for energy saving and greener production, probing of internal stress and structure using neutrons and synchrotron radiation, improved metal forming for automobiles and mechanisms of superplastic deformation.

Graduate teaching

I supervise graduate students and postdoctoral researchers in the above areas of research interest.

Goldsmiths' Fellow and Tutor in Material Sciences
Professor of Materials


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