Professors hosting
Junior Fellows

Economics and Business

Matevž Raškovič

Senior Lecturer in International Business, Victoria University of Wellington, New Zealand


Matevz moved to New Zealand in February 2018. Born in Slovenia, Matevz worked as Assistant Professor of international business at the University of Ljubljana, School of Economics and Business in Slovenia prior to joining Victoria University of Wellington. Since February 2019, he is the Director of the Postgraduate Programme in International Business at Victoria University of Wellington. Matevz received his PhD and MSc from the University of Ljubljana, Slovenia in 2012 and 2007. He is the recipient of the 2013 University of Ljubljana President’s Award for Outstanding Achievement of Young Faculty. Matevz was a Fulbright Fellow at Harvard University, FAS Sociology in 2017 and a visiting doctoral student at Harvard, FAS Sociology in 2010-2011. Matevz is also a guest professor at Zhejiang School of Management in China at the Program in Innovation, Entrepreneurship and Global Leadership (PIEGL). He is also a habilitated Associate Professor of International Business at the University of Ljubljana, Faculty of Economics, Slovenia. He is the recipient of a 2019 Victoria Business School Learning & Teaching Innovation grant. Through the Māmani Whakaaro project supported by the grant, he works with Maori and Pasifika students in expanding their global mindset. He is the co-author of the book “Understanding a Changing China: Key Issues for Business” with Howard Davies (Routledge, 2018).

Andres Drenik

Assistant Professor of Economics, Columbia University


Andres Drenik is an Assistant Professor at Columbia University. Before joining Columbia University, he received a B.A. in Economics from Universidad de San Andrés (Argentina) in 2005, and a Ph.D. in Economics from Stanford University in 2016. His research is concentrated in labor economics and macroeconomics. He is currently working on projects about information asymmetries in markets with search frictions, contracting and pricing in foreign currency in emerging economies, the effects of inflation uncertainty on firms’ optimal price setting decisions, as well as the labor market dynamics after large devaluations.

Tina Saksida

Assistant Professor of Management, University of Prince Edward Island, Canada


Dr. Tina Saksida is an Assistant Professor of Management at the University of Prince Edward Island in Canada. She obtained her Honours Bachelor of Science (Psychology) and Ph.D. (Industrial Relations and Human Resources) from the University of Toronto. Her research interests include gender and leadership, age and generational diversity at work, gender representation in business education, digitalization of work, and management in the non-profit sector; her work has appeared in such outlets as Human Resource Management, Applied Psychology: An International Review, and the International Journal of Human Resource Management. She teaches primarily in the areas of organizational behaviour, research methods, evidence-based management, and negotiation. Dr. Saksida maintains close personal and professional ties in her native country of Slovenia, where she has experience working as a project manager, research collaborator, and consultant.

Nuša Fain

Assistant Professor, Smith School of Business, Queen's University, Canada


Nuša Fain is an Assistant Professor at Smith School of Business, specializing in entrepreneurship and innovation management. She completed her PhD in Mechanical Engineering with a focus on process management within innovative organizations at University of Ljubljana (2010). Prior to joining Smith School of Business, Dr. Fain was a lecturer at Strathclyde Business School (UK), where she taught Managing Innovation, Strategic Global Marketing and Integrated Marketing Communications. She has extensive consulting experience within the field of product development and innovation management with a wide diversity of firms (including oil and gas, manufacturing and retail). Her research interests are two-fold. She is exploring implementation of open innovation practices into mature organizations and looking into pedagogies that support the development of entrepreneurial mindsets in design students. At Smith School of Business, Dr. Fain teaches entrepreneurship and new venture creation courses on the Commerce program and supports the delivery of content for the individual projects on the Master of Management Innovation and Entrepreneurship program.

Sergeja Slapničar

Associate Professor of Accounting, University of Queensland


Sergeja Slapnicar is Associate Professor of Accounting within the University of Queensland Business School. Her predominantly experimental research focuses on the impact of management control, accountability and incentivising on managerial behaviour and decision-making (motivation, risk-taking, cognition). She has published in accounting, finance and psychology outlets. She held directorships and advisory roles in several public interest entities, served as a member of the Board of the Slovenian Agency for Public Oversight of Auditing and as a Chairwoman of the Slovenian statutory dispute resolution body. 

Law

Urška Velikonja

Professor of Law, Georgetown University


Professor Velikonja teaches at Georgetown University and previously taught at Emory University. She writes primarily about securities regulation and enforcement. Velikonja’s recent scholarship has appeared in the Stanford Law Review, the California Law Review, the Cornell Law Review and many other journals. Prof. Velikonja’s work has also been featured in the Wall Street Journal, The Economist, the Financial Times and other media. Prof. Velikonja graduated first in her class at the University of Ljubljana School of Law in 2002 & received her LL.M. at Harvard Law School in 2003. She received her J.D. magna cum laude from Harvard Law School in 2009. Prior to entering academia, Velikonja clerked for Judge Stephen F. Williams of the U.S. Court of Appeals for the D.C. Circuit & worked as a banking and finance associate with an Austrian law firm in her native Slovenia.

John Plecnik

Associate Professor of Law, Cleveland State University


John serves as an Associate Professor of Law with Tenure at the Cleveland-Marshall College of Law at Cleveland State University. Prior to his current post, John served as an Adjunct Professor of Law at Georgetown University Law Center. John earned his B.A., summa cum laude, in Accounting from Belmont Abbey College, where he graduated co-valedictorian. He earned his J.D., cum laude, from Duke University School of Law. While at Duke, he was one of six inaugural executive board members to co-found the Duke Journal of Constitutional Law & Public Policy. John earned his LL.M. in Taxation from New York University School of Law. While at NYU, he served as Executive Editor of the NYU Review of Law & Social Change and was the first part-time student to be selected as a member of that review. In addition, John was awarded the Certificate in Business Excellence by Columbia University Graduate School of Business for completing a number of Executive Education programs.

Physics

Andrej Prša

Associate Professor of Astrophysics and Planetary Science, Villanova University


Andrej Prša is a Professor of Astrophysics at Villanova University. In 2005 Andrej earned his PhD in Astrophysics from the University of Ljubljana, Slovenia. For his dissertation, Andrej built the widely used binary modeling code PHOEBE (PHysics Of Eclipsing BinariEs). Today, his field of expertise remains binary star physics, but has expanded to include multiple stellar systems, extra-solar planets, asteroseismology and astrostatistics. Most of Andrej's work is based on modeling large astronomical data-sets and applying large-scale non-linear regression models using backpropagating neural networks, stochastic embedding algorithms and Markov Chain Monte Carlo samplers. He has published a textbook on eclipsing binary stars and authored over 200 papers, 40 of which are first-author papers. Andrej is currently leading a research group that consists of 4 postdocs, 3 graduate students and 5 undergraduate students. The group is funded through his external grants, most notably from NSF and NASA, and he has an uninterrupted grant track record since 2007. In 2018 Andrej was the recipient of the prestigious Veritas Award for outstanding research. He actively collaborates on the large-scale international surveys Kepler/K2, TESS, LSST, SDSS/APOGEE and Gaia.

Uroš Seljak

Professor of Astrophysics, University of California, Berkeley


Uroš Seljak joined Berkeley as a faculty in physics and in astronomy departments in 2008, jointly appointed as a senior faculty scientist at Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory. He received his B.S. in 1989 and M.S. in 1991 from Ljubljana University, Slovenia and his PhD in 1995 from MIT. He was a Smithsonian Fellow at Harvard-Smithsonian Center for Astrophysics from 1995 to 1998. Subsequently he served as a faculty at Princeton University, ICTP Trieste and Zurich University before moving to Berkeley. He is the recipient of the David and Lucile Packard Fellowship in Science and Engineering (2000), the Alfred P. Sloan Fellowship (2001), the Helen B. Warner award of American Astronomical Society (2001), the NSF CAREER award (2002), Fellow of American Physical Society (2016) and a member of National Academy of Sciences (2019). He is a co-director of Berkeley Center for Cosmological Physics and a member of Berkeley Institutes for Data Science and Foundations of Data Analysis. His research focuses on applying theory and data analysis methods to fields of astronomy, cosmology, physics, and beyond. 

Jure Zupan

Associate Professor of Physics, University of Cincinnati


Jure Zupan is an Associate Professor at the University of Cincinnati, working in theoretical high energy physics. He completed his PhD in 2002 at the University of Ljubljana, Slovenia. Prof. Zupan was a postdoctoral fellow at Technion, Haifa, Israel (2002-2004), Carnegie Mellon Univ., Pittsburgh,PA (2004-2006), CERN, Geneva, Switzerland (2007-2009). He is also editor in chief of popular science web portal & magazine Kvarkadabra (in Slovenian language), coauthor of four popular science books, and participant in a collective blog.

Kristjan Haule

Professor of Physics, Rutgers University


Kristjan Haule is Distinguished Professor at Rutgers University, the State University of New Jersey, working in theoretical condensed matter physics. He obtained his undergraduate education in Slovenia (University of Ljubljana, BSC 1997) and he has done his PhD work in Slovenia and in Karlsruhe University (2002). He was appointed Assistant Professor of Physics at Rutgers in 2005, and was promoted to Associate Professor (2009), University Professor (2012) and Distinguished Professor (2018). He was an Alfred P. Sloan Research Fellow in 2008-2010, received NSF Early Career Award in 2008, and The Rutgers Board of Trustees award for Scholarly Excellence in 2009. He received prestigious Blavatnik Award in 2013 for theoretical and computational studies of strongly correlated electron systems, and became fellow of the American Physical Society in 2019.

Robert Jeraj

Professor of Medical Physics, University of Wisconsin


Robert Jeraj is a Professor of Medical Physics, Human Oncology, Radiology and Biomedical Engineering at the University of Wisconsin, Madison, where he leads the Imaging and Radiation Sciences Program at the University of Wisconsin Carbone Cancer Center. Prof. Jeraj received both his undergraduate education and Ph.D in Physics at the University of Ljubljana. His main research interest is in understanding tumor heterogeneity, and the related origins and development of treatment resistance using extensive molecular imaging endpoints.

Maruša Bradač

Professor of Physics, University of California, Davis


Maruša Bradač is a Physics professor at University of California, Davis. Before she started to work here, she was a Hubble Fellow at University of California, Santa Barbara, was spending her time as a Postdoctoral Research associate at Kavli Institute for Particle Astrophysics and Cosmology (KIPAC) in Stanford, California. She did her PhD and graduate research at University of Bonn, Germany. She spent her undergraduate years partly in Bonn and partly in her home country Slovenia.

English Literature

Gregory Sadlek

Dean and Professor of U.S. Studies - Literature, Cleveland State University


Gregory M. Sadlek is the founding Dean of the College of Liberal Arts and Social Sciences at Cleveland State University (CSU) in Cleveland, Ohio. From 1989 to 2005, Sadlek was a member of the Department of English at the University of Nebraska at Omaha (UNO). Before coming to UNO, Sadlek taught at Northern Illinois University, Hamilton College, and the Université de Nantes in France. He has been the recipient of two Fulbright Subject Specialist Awards--to Bahcesehir University in Istanbul (2011)and to the University of Ljubljana in Slovenia (2016). Sadlek has presented numerous papers and published widely on medieval literature. Sadlek has held several professional leadership roles. He has served on the Boards of the Council of Colleges of Arts and Sciences, the Town Hall Lecture Series, and the Cleveland Play House. Before becoming a dean at CSU, he was Chairperson of the UNO English Department from 1994 to 2000. From 1998 to 1999, he served as President of the UNO chapter of the American Association of University Professors. From May 2002 to May 2004, he served two one-year terms as President of the UNO Faculty Senate.

Linguistics

Gašper Beguš

Assistant Professor of Linguistics, University of Washington


Gašper Beguš is an Assistant Professor of Linguistics at the University of Washington, where he directs the Phonology Lab. Gašper obtained his undergraduate degree at the University of Ljubljana and his MA and Ph.D. at Harvard University. At Harvard, he served as a Resident Tutor and Sophomore Advising Coordinator, and was awarded the Certificate of Teaching Excellence award, Mind Brain Behavior Graduate Student award, Harvard Merit/Term-Time award, and was nominated for the Star Family Prize in Excellence in Advising. The focal question of his research is how humans acquire speech and how we can computationally simulate this acquisition. He combines experimental, statistical, and computational models to address this question. He is currently exploring how the well-understood dependencies in speech data can help us understand what and how neural networks learn and how they encode learning representations. His work appeared in the Journal of Linguistics, Journal of the Acoustical Society of America, Journal of the American Oriental Society.

Computer Science

Jure Leskovec

Associate Professor of Computer Science, Stanford University


Jure Leskovec is an associate professor of Computer Science at Stanford University where he is a member of the InfoLab and the AI lab. Prof. Leskovec joined the department in September 2009. He is also working as Chief Scientist at Pinterest, where he focuses on machine learning problems. He co-founded a machine learning startup Kosei, which was acquired by Pinterest. In 2008/09, Prof. Leskovec was a postdoctoral researcher at Cornell University working with Jon Kleinberg and Dan Huttenlocher. He completed his Ph.D. in Machine Learning Department, School of Computer Science at Carnegie Mellon University under the supervision of Christos Faloutsos in 2008. He completed his undergraduate degree in computer science at University of Ljubljana, Slovenia in 2004. Prof. Leskovec also worked with the Artificial Intelligence Laboratory, Jozef Stefan Institute in Ljubljana, Slovenia.

Sanja Fidler

Assistant Professor in the Department of Computer Science, University of Toronto, Canada


Sanja Fidler is an Assistant Professor at University of Toronto. Prior coming to Toronto, in 2012, she was a Research Assistant Professor at Toyota Technological Institute at Chicago, an academic institute located in the campus of University of Chicago. Prof. Fidler completed her postdoc with Prof. Sven Dickinson at University of Toronto in 2012. She finished her PhD in 2010 at University of Ljubljana in Slovenia in the group of Prof. Ales Leonardis. In 2010, Sanja was visiting Prof. Trevor Darrell's group at UC Berkeley and ICSI. She received her BSc degree in Applied Math at University of Ljubljana.

Dawn Song

Professor of Computer Science Division, University of California, Berkeley


Dawn Song is a Professor in the Department of Electrical Engineering and Computer Science at UC Berkeley. Her research interest lies in deep learning, security, and blockchain. She is the recipient of various awards including the MacArthur Fellowship, the Guggenheim Fellowship, the NSF CAREER Award, the Alfred P. Sloan Research Fellowship, the MIT Technology Review TR-35 Award, the George Tallman Ladd Research Award, the Okawa Foundation Research Award, the Li Ka Shing Foundation Women in Science Distinguished Lecture Series Award, the Faculty Research Award from IBM, Google and other major tech companies, and Best Paper Awards from top conferences in Computer Security and Deep Learning. She obtained her Ph.D. degree from UC Berkeley. Prior to joining UC Berkeley as a faculty, she was a faculty at Carnegie Mellon University from 2002 to 2007.

Jernej Barbič

Associate Professor of Computer Science, University of Southern California, Los Angeles


Jernej Barbic is an associate professor of computer science at USC, working in the field of computer graphics and animation. In 2011, MIT Technology Review named him of the Top 35 Innovators under the age of 35 in the world (TR35). Jernej is the author of Vega FEM, an free C/C++ software physics library for deformable object simulation. He received his Ph.D. from CMU, and did postdoctoral research at MIT CSAIL. His research interests include computer graphics, animation, fast physics, special effects for film, medical simulation, FEM deformable objects, haptics, sound simulation, and model reduction and control of nonlinear systems. Jernej is a NSF CAREER Award winner, a Sloan Research Fellow, and holds a Viterbi Early Career Chair position at USC.

Mateja Jamnik

Professor of Artificial Intelligence, University of Cambridge


Mateja Jamnik is a Professor of Artificial Intelligence at the Department of Computer Science and Technology of the University of Cambridge, UK. She is developing AI techniques for human-like computing - she computationally models how people solve problems to enable machines to reason in a similar way to humans. She is essentially trying to humanise computer thinking. She applies this AI technology to medical data to advance personalised cancer medicine, and to education to personalise tutoring systems. Mateja is passionate about bringing science closer to the public and engages frequently with the media and public science events. Her active support of women scientists was recognised by the Royal Society which awarded her the Athena Prize. Mateja has been advising the UK government on policy direction in relation to the impact of AI on society.

Marinka Zitnik

Assistant Professor of Biomedical Informatics, Harvard University


Marinka Zitnik is an Assistant Professor at Harvard University, where she investigates artificial intelligence and machine learning, and translates them into solutions for problems in science, medicine, and health. Her methods have opened up new avenues for understanding nature, analyzing health, and developing drugs and are used by major institutions, including Baylor College of Medicine, Karolinska Institute, Stanford Medical School, and Massachusetts General Hospital. Before Harvard, Dr. Zitnik was a postdoctoral fellow in Computer Science at Stanford. She received her Ph.D. in Computer Science from University of Ljubljana while also researching at Imperial College London, University of Toronto, Baylor College of Medicine, and Stanford. She was named a Rising Star in EECS by MIT and a Next Generation in Biomedicine by The Broad Institute of Harvard and MIT, being the only young scientist who received such recognition in both EECS and science.

Political and Social Studies

Ana Bračič

Assistant Professor in the Department of Political Science, Michigan State University


Prof. Bračič joined the Political Science department at Michigan State University in Fall 2019. Her research is predominantly in the field of comparative politics, and focuses on questions of human rights, discrimination, the persistence of social exclusion, and ground-level effectiveness of human rights institutions, such as NGOs. Most of her research relies on lab-in-field & survey experiments. In order to gather data from severely underrepresented populations, such as the Roma in Central Europe, Prof. Bračič uses innovative approaches to measurement, like videogames. Prof. Bračič is a co-founder of Community Engagement + Experiments Lab at the University of Oklahoma and a member of the Minority Politics Initiative at Michigan State. Prof. Bračič earned her PhD from the Politics Department at NYU in 2013.

Peter Verovšek

Assistant Professor in Politics/International Relations, Sheffield University, UK


Dr. Peter J. Verovšek is a Lecturer (Assistant Professor) in Politics/International relations. He studied Government (high honors) and German as a undergraduate at Dartmouth College (AB 2006, summa cum laude). He then conducted research on the continuing effects of the memories of World War II in the politics of the former Yugoslavia as a U.S. Fulbright Scholar (2006-07), before receiving his MA (2008), MPhil (2010) and PhD (2013) in Political Science from Yale University. After completing his doctorate, he spent three years as Lecturer on Social Studies at Harvard University (2013-16), where he also served as co-founder and co-chair of the European Union Study Group at the Minda de Gunzburg Center for European Studies. He has also held appointments as a research fellow at the Institute for Advanced Studies in the Humanities in Bad Homburg, Germany, at the Jean Monnet Foundation in Lausanne, Switzerland, and at the Normative Orders Cluster of Excellence at the Goethe University in Frankfurt am Main, Germany.

Marine and Environmental Affairs

Nives Dolšak

Professor & Associate Director of the School of Marine and Environmental Affairs, University of Washington, Seattle


Nives Dolšak is professor and associate director of the School of Marine and Environmental Affairs. Between 2012 and 2018, she served as a visiting professor at Faculty of Economics, University of Ljubljana, Slovenia. She received her Joint Ph.D. from School of Public & Environmental Affairs and the Department of Political Science, Indiana University, Bloomington. Professor Dolšak serves on the Science Panel of the Puget Sound Partnership. She is the recipient of the University of Washington's College of the Environment Outstanding Community Impact (2018) and the Outstanding Teaching Faculty (2013) awards. Her co-authored paper, "Factors impacting investments in energy efficiency and clean technologies: empirical evidence from Slovenian manufacturing firms", published by Journal of Cleaner Production, was recognized among "The Ten Most Resounding Research Achievements of the University of Ljubljana in 2016".

Veterinary Sciences

Gregor Gorjanc

Chancellor's Fellow in Data Driven Innovation for AgriTech, The Roslin Institute, University of Edinburgh


Dr. Gregor Gorjanc is a Chancellor's Fellow in Data Driven Innovation for AgriTech (Assistant Professor) at The Roslin Institute (University of Edinburgh). He is also affiliated with the Global Academy for Agriculture and Food Security (University of Edinburgh), the Centre for Statistics (University of Edinburgh) and the Biotechnical Faculty (University of Ljubljana). He studied Animal Science (engineer) and Genetics (PhD) at the Biotechnical Faculty (University of Ljubljana) in Slovenia. He is thrilled by whole-system (population) approaches and likes to combine various data science, genetics/genomics and breeding methods to address research and applied problems. His speciality is the ability to work across a range of species, including livestock, companion animals, plants, fish, insects and even some spill-over into human populations.

Biology

Andrej Šali

Professor, Department of Bioengineering and Therapeutic Sciences, University of California San Francisco


Andrej Sali received his BSc degree in chemistry from the University of Ljubljana, Slovenia, in 1987, working on the sequence-structure-function relationship of stefins and cistatins under the supervision of Professor Vito Turk; and his PhD from Birkbeck College, University of London, UK, in 1991, developing the MODELLER program for comparative modeling of protein structures under the supervision of Professor Tom L. Blundell. He was then a postdoc with Professor Martin Karplus at Harvard University as a Jane Coffin Childs Memorial Fund fellow, studying lattice Monte Carlo models of protein folding. From 1995 to 2002, he was first an Assistant Professor and then an Associate Professor at The Rockefeller University. In 2003, he moved to University of California, San Francisco, as a Professor of Computational Biology in the Department of Bioengineering and Therapeutic Sciences, Department of Pharmaceutical Chemistry, and California Institute for Quantitative Biosciences (QB3). He was recognized as Sinsheimer Scholar (1996), an Alfred P. Sloan Research Fellow (1998), an Irma T. Hirschl Trust Career Scientist (2000), the Zois Award of Science Ambassador of Republic of Slovenia (2007), a Fellow of International Society for Computational Biology (2014), Jubilee Professor of Indian Academy of Sciences (2017), Bijvoet Medal recipient (2018), and member of National Academy of Sciences of USA (2018). He has been an Editor of Structure since 2002. He is also a Founder of Prospect Genomix that merged with Structural Genomix (2001); Global Blood Therapeutics (2012); and Quanta Therapeutics (2018). Dr. Sali develops and applies computational methods for determining and modulating structures and functions of proteins and their assemblies.

Jernej Ule

Professor, Department of Molecular Neuroscience, University College London & The Francis Crick Institute


Jernej Ule obtained his Ph.D. in molecular neuroscience from the Rockefeller University in New York in 2004 with Robert B. Darnell. He started his own research group at the MRC Laboratory of Molecular Biology in Cambridge, UK, in 2013 he moved with his research group to the UCL Institute of Neurology, where he is a professor at the Department of Molecular Neuroscience, and in 2016 he has been seconded to the Francis Crick Institute along with his group. In 2020 he will start a satellite lab at the Institute of chemistry in Ljubljana, Slovenia. His group develops new techniques that reveal the regulatory RNA networks within cells. These techniques are used to understand how RNA regulation coordinates the development and function of nerve cells, and how faulty RNA networks lead to conditions affecting the nervous system.

Chemistry and Biochemistry

David Sarlah

Assistant Professor of Chemistry, UIUC


David Sarlah received his undergraduate degree in chemistry from the University of Ljubljana in 2006 and his Ph.D. from the Scripps Research Institute in 2011. Following a postdoctoral stay at ETH Zürich, he joined the faculty at Illinois in 2014. His research interests span from the synthesis of complex, biologically active natural products and the related chemical biology to methodology development. His research focuses on synthesis of natural products and the related chemical biology; methodology development; asymmetric catalysis. Professor Sarlah’s research program is aimed at providing new solutions to the problems encountered at the frontline of organic synthesis that benefit chemistry and enable advances in the allied fields of chemical biology, material science, and medicine.

Boštjan Kobe

Professor, School of Chemistry and Molecular Biosciences, University of Queensland, Brisbane, Australia


Boštjan Kobe received his BSc degree in chemistry at the University of Ljubljana, Slovenia, and his PhD degree at the University of Texas Southwestern Medical Center at Dallas, USA. He worked as a postdoctoral researcher at St. Vincent’s Institute in Melbourne, Australia, where he also started his own laboratory at the end of 1997. In 2000, he moved to the School of Chemistry and Molecular Biosciences, University of Queensland, Brisbane, Australia. He has been awarded by the 2001 Minister's Prize for Achievement in Life Sciences, an ARC Federation Fellowship in 2005, the 2009 ASBMB (Australian Society of Biochemitry and Molecular Biology) Roche Medal, the 2018 ASBMB Beckman Coulter Discovery Award and became a Fellow of the Australian Academy of Science in 2018. He was the President of the Society of Crystallographers in Australia and New Zealand (2012-2014). He is Editor of Acta Crystallographica Section D Structural Biology and PLoS One. His laboratory focuses on applying structural biology approaches to understanding infection and immunity.

Jernej Murn

Assistant Professor of Biochemistry, University of California, Riverside


Jernej Murn is an Assistant Professor in the Department of Biochemistry at University of California, Riverside. Prior to joining UC Riverside as faculty in 2017, he was a postdoctoral researcher at Harvard Medical School/Boston Children’s Hospital where he trained with Yang Shi in epigenetics and RNA biology. Prof. Murn completed his Ph.D. in molecular biology that he shared between University of Ljubljana, Slovenia, and CEA Laboratory for Functional Genomics in France. Research in his laboratory focuses on regulatory roles of RNA and RNA-binding proteins in interpreting genomic information in development and disease.

Dentistry

Janina Golob Deeb

Associate Professor of Periodontics, Virginia Commonwealth University


Dr. Janina Golob Deeb received her Doctor of Dental Medicine degree from the University of Ljubljana, Slovenia in 1996. Following graduation she completed a year of internship at the University of Ljubljana. She continued her education at Oregon Health Sciences University graduating with a certificate in Periodontology in 2000 and a Master in Science degree in Oral Molecular Biology in 2001. Before moving to Richmond and joining VCU in 2013, she practiced as a periodontist in Tucson, Arizona. Dr. Golob Deeb has been teaching in undergraduate and graduate clinics in Departments of General Practice and Periodontics. Dr. Golob Deeb is a board certified periodontist and holds dental licenses in Virginia, Arizona, Oregon and her native Slovenia. She continues to practice part-time in the Faculty intramural practice at the Virginia Commonwealth University. In her free time, Dr. Golob Deeb enjoys traveling and learning about different cultures and languages.

Medicine

Dimitri Krainc

Professor of Neurology, Northwestern University


Dimitri Krainc, MD, PhD currently serves as the Ward Professor and Chairman of the Department of Neurology and Director of the Center for Neurogenetics at Northwestern University, Feinberg School of Medicine in Chicago. Previously, Dr. Krainc spent more than 20 years at Harvard Medical School where he completed his research training followed by a neurology residency and fellowship in movement disorders at Massachusetts General Hospital. He then served on the neurology faculty at MGH and Harvard Medical School until 2013 when he relocated to Chicago. The overarching goal of Dr. Krainc’s research is to study molecular mechanisms of neurodegeneration, focusing on Parkinson’s and Huntington’s disease, to facilitate the development of targeted therapies. In the area of PD, his group identified a positive feedback loop between alpha-synuclein and glucocerebrosidase in sporadic and genetic forms of PD (Mazzulli et al, Cell, 2011). They also described convergence of mitochondrial and lysosomal dysfunction in midbrain neurons from PD patients (Burbulla et al, Science, 2017), as well as direct contacts between lysosomes and mitochondria (Wong et al, Nature, 2018). Dr. Krainc is the principal founder of Lysosomal Therapeutics, Inc. and serves on the SAB of Intellia Therapeutics and Prevail Therapeutics. He received several awards for his work, including the Javits Neuroscience Award.

David Križaj

Adjunct Professor in Neurobiology & Anatomy and Professor in Ophthalmology/Visual Sciences, University of Utah


David Križaj is the John Frederick Carter Professor in Ophthalmology & Visual Sciences at the University of Utah School of Medicine, currently also serving as the Director of the Neuroscience Program at the University of Utah. He completed graduate training at the New York University School of Medicine and postdoctoral fellow in retinal neurobiology at University of California San Francisco. He joined faculty at UCSF before moving to Salt Lake City in 2007 to investigate synaptic transmission and ocular mechanotransduction. The goal of his research is to define the molecular rules that govern intraocular pressure, calcium regulation and visual signaling in the eye. Bioengineering approaches investigate cellular mechanisms that transduce pressure, strain, shear, swelling in retinal neurons and glia. Translational projects focus on developing treatments for glaucoma, diabetic retinopathy and corneal pain.

Mihaela Pavličev

Professor, Department of Theoretical Biology, University of Vienna


Dr. Pavlicev received a PhD in ecology from the University of Vienna in 2003. After PhD she worked in molecular phylogenetics at the Natural History Museum in Vienna, primarily on phylogenetic relationships in lizards and birds. During subsequent postdoctoral training in quantitative genetics, she worked on the structure and evolution of the genotype-to-phenotype map, first at Washington University in St. Louis, and later at the Center for Ecological and Evolutionary Synthesis at the University of Oslo, Norway. She subsequently spent a year at Konrad Lorenz Institute for Evolution and Cognition in Altenberg near Vienna and combined writing with teaching at the Department of Theoretical Biology, University of Vienna. She joined faculty at Cincinnati Children’s in the summer of 2013, and transferred to the University of Vienna in 2019. Dr. Pavlicev`s work is situated at the interface between organism and population: she focuses on understanding how the patterns of phenotypic variation and its underlying genetics arise in the context of past evolution, and what consequences they have. These approaches are applicable for understanding human detrimental variation, i.e., disease, in a field commonly referred to as evolutionary medicine.

Matija Peterlin

Professor in the Departments of Medicine and Microbiology/Immunology, University of California San Francisco


B. Matija Peterlin, MD, was educated at Duke University and Harvard Medical School. Following clinical training at Stanford U.Medical Center, he became Assistant Professor at U.California, SF.He rose through the ranks to full professor and Investigator at the Howard Hughes Medical Institute. He defined the mechanism of action of several HIV proteins and discovered how elongation of transcription is controlled in eukaryotic systems. He was also among the first investigators to focus on the latency of HIV and its impact on the persistence of this infection. Dr. Peterlin is also a clinician and treats patients with autoimmune diseases.

Engineering

Kaja Antlej

Lecturer In Industrial Design, Deakin University


Dr Kaja Antlej is interested in digital heritage/virtual museums (design and evaluation of VR/AR/MR/XR/3D printing experiences) and human-centered design. She has an MSc in Industrial Design (2008, 3D scanning and 3D printing) and a PhD in Museum and Heritage Studies (2013, VR/AR, serious games and 3D printing for museum exhibitions), both from the University of Ljubljana. In 2015, Kaja completed her Endeavour Post-doctoral Fellowship ('Australia's Fulbright') at the University of Canberra. She has been involved in NMC Horizon Reports (Museum Edition 2015, 2016), eCultValue (FP7), and ViMM - Virtual Multimodal Museum TA2.2 (H2020), UDigiSH DARIAH-EU (2019-). Dr Antlej is one of the leading researchers of The Little L Project immersive experience – three times highly commended including MAGNA 2019, partially featured at Science Centre Singapore, and exhibited at BoDW Hong Kong 2018. She is a member of ICOM, AMaGA, Interpet Europe, AAM, and Joint Co-Leader for VRARA Asia Pacific Digital Heritage CoP.

Andrej Košmrlj

Assistant Professor of Mechanical and Aerospace Engineering, Princeton University


Andrej Košmrlj is an Assistant Professor of Mechanical and Aerospace Engineering and a member of the Princeton Institute for the Science and Technology of Materials at Princeton University. Prof. Košmrlj has received the NSF Career Award and the Excellence in Teaching Award from the School of Engineering and Applied Science at Princeton University. His research interests are in Mechanics, Soft Matter and Biological Physics. From 2011 to 2015, Prof. Košmrlj was postdoc with David R. Nelson at Harvard University. In 2011, he received a Ph.D. in Physics at MIT, where he was co-advised by Arup K. Chakraborty and Mehran Kardar. Before coming to MIT, Prof. Košmrlj obtained a B. Sc. (2006) in Mathematical Physics from the University of Ljubljana, Slovenia, under the supervision of Primož Ziherl.

Domen Novak

Assistant Professor of Electrical Engineering, University of Wyoming


Domen Novak received his Ph. D. in Electrical Engineering at the University of Ljubljana, Slovenia. He completed his postdoctoral fellowship in August 2014 at ETH Zurich, Switzerland. He is currently an Assistant Professor at the University of Wyoming. Dr. Novak's main research area is human-robot interaction, particularly rehabilitation robotics. To achieve his goals in this area, he makes use of expertise in robotics, biomedical signal processing, sensor fusion and virtual reality.

Mitja Trkov

Assistant Professor of Mechanical Engineering, Rowan University


Mitja Trkov is an Assistant Professor in the Department of Mechanical Engineering at Rowan University, NJ. He obtained his Ph.D. degree in Mechanical and Aerospace Engineering from Rutgers University, New Brunswick, NJ in 2016. He received his B.S. degree in Mechanical Engineering from the University of Ljubljana, Slovenia in 2007. Prior to his graduate studies, he worked as an R&D engineer in the naval industry. Before joining Rowan University, he was a postdoctoral fellow in the Department of Mechanical Engineering at the University of Utah in Salt Lake City, UT. His research interests include human-machine interactions, robotics, wearable system, ergonomics and biomechanics.

Gregor Verbič

Associate Professor of Electrical and Information Engineering, University of Sydney


Gregor Verbič received the B.Sc., M.Sc., and Ph.D. degrees in electrical engineering from the University of Ljubljana, Ljubljana, Slovenia, in 1995, 2000, and 2003, respectively. In 2005, he was a NATO-NSERC Postdoctoral Fellow with the University of Waterloo, Waterloo, ON, Canada. Since 2010, he has been with the School of Electrical and Information Engineering, The University of Sydney, Sydney, NSW, Australia. His expertise is in power system operation, stability and control, and electricity markets. His current research interests include grid and market integration of renewable energies and distributed energy resources (DER), future grid modelling and scenario analysis, wide-area coordination of distributed energy resources, and demand response. He was a recipient of the IEEE Power and Energy Society Prize Paper Award in 2006. He is an Associate Editor of the IEEE Transactions on Smart Grid.

Miloš Žefran

Professor, Department of Electrical and Computer Engineering, University of Illinois at Chicago


Miloš Žefran has been at the University of Illinois at Chicago since 1999 where he is currently a Professor of Electrical and Computer Engineering. He holds a B.S. in Electrical Engineering and a B.S. in Mathematics from the University of Ljubljana, Slovenia, where he also received a M.S. in Electrical Engineering. He received a M.S. in Mechanical Engineering and a Ph.D. in Computer Science from the University of Pennsylvania in 1995 and 1996, respectively. From 1997 to 1999 he was a National Science Foundation (NSF) Postdoctoral Scholar at the California Institute of Technology. He was on the faculty at the Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute and held a visiting position at the University of Pisa, Italy. Dr. Žefran's research interests are in robotics and control with a focus on human-robot interaction, autonomous vehicles, haptics, medical training, and cyber-physical systems. Dr. Žefran has received a NSF Career Award in 2001 and has been continuously supported by the NSF since.

Mathematics

Mateja Šajna

Professor of Discrete Mathematics, University of Ottawa


Mateja Šajna is a Professor of Discrete Mathematics at the University of Ottawa, Canada. She completed her B.Sc.degree in applied mathematics at the University of Ljubljana under the supervision of Bojan Mohar, and her graduate degrees in discrete mathematics at Simon Fraser University under the supervision of the renowned Canadian graph theorist Brian Alspach. In her research, she has been focusing on symmetry in graphs, graph decompositions, hypergraphs, and applications of graph theory. Dr. Šajna was a recipient of the 2003 Kirkman Medal by the Institute of Combinatorics and Its Applications.

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