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Honorary Fellowships for Damon Ieremia Salesa, Anna Sapir Abulafia and Howard Michael Robinson

Professor Toeolesulusulu Damon Salesa is the Vice-Chancellor of Te Wānanga Aronui o Tāmaki Makaurau – Auckland University of Technology (AUT). Damon is a prize-winning scholar, specialising in history, society, and politics in New Zealand and the other Pacific Islands.

After obtaining his MA with First Class Honours at the University of Auckland, he completed his doctoral studies at Oxford University. He is the author and editor of many books and academic articles including Island Time: New Zealand’s Pacific Futures and Racial Crossings: Race, Intermarriage and the Victorian British Empire, which won the international Ernest Scott Prize in 2012. He is a Fellow of the Royal Society of New Zealand, and currently serves on their Council.

Previously, he has been Pro Vice-Chancellor Pacific at the University of Auckland, where he was also Co-Head of Te Wānanga o Waipapa (School of Māori Studies and Pacific Studies) at the University of Auckland. He worked at the University of Michigan for ten years, including in roles as Director of the Asian Pacific Islander American Studies Program and as an Associate Professor in the History Department and Program in American Culture.

Damon retains strong connections to many of Auckland’s communities, especially in South Auckland. A passionate teacher and educator, he has been an innovator at the interface between schools and universities and has been an important leader and supporter of the work of schools, in pedagogy, curriculum and governance leadership roles in education, research, and community.

Professor Anna Sapir Abulafia (DTh, LittD, DLitt, FBA, FRHistS) is Emeritus Professor of the Study of the Abrahamic Religions in the Faculty of Theology and Religion at the University of Oxford.

An Emeritus Fellow of Lady Margaret Hall, Professor Abulafia was formerly Senior Tutor (1996 – 2002) and Vice-President (2002 – 2010) of Lucy Cavendish College, Cambridge.

Elected as a Fellow of the British Academy in 2020, Professor Abulafia’s research focused on the interaction of medieval Christianity and Judaism within the broad context of twelfth and thirteenth-century theological and ecclesiastical developments.

Professor Howard Michael Robinson (MA (Oxon), MPhil (Notts), PhD (Liverpool)) is a Professor Emeritus in Philosophy at the Central European University in Budapest.

Professor Robinson was a Lecturer in Philosophy at Oriel from 1970-1974, after which he took up a post as Senior Lecturer and Reader in Philosophy at the University of Liverpool, where he taught until 2000.

Following his time at Liverpool, Howard took up a post as Professor of Philosophy at the Central European University in Hungary, where he later served as Provost and Academic Pro-Rector from 2007 – 2010.

Currently a Research Fellow at Blackfriars Hall, Oxford, Professor Robinson has written and edited books and articles on the philosophy of mind and the philosophy of perception, and articles on the history of philosophy (mainly Berkelian idealism) and the philosophy of religion.

We are delighted that Professor Salesa, Professor Abulafia, and Professor Robinson have accepted these Honorary Fellowships in recognition of their outstanding academic contributions.

Professor Abulafia and Professor Robinson had their Honorary Fellowships conferred by the Provost and Fellows in Oriel’s Chapel on Thursday 2 February, and we look forward to welcoming Professor Salesa to College when he is able to make it to the UK.