Kevin Schawinski

Assistant Professor of Galaxy & Black Hole Astrophysics, Swiss Federal Institute of Technology Zurich

I studied for my BA in physics and mathematics at Cornell University and graduated in 2004. I then did my graduate research on galaxy evolution and black holes at Oxford University under Sukyoung K. Yi. While at Oxford, I co-founded the Galaxy Zoo citizen science project (galaxyzoo.org) which has by now engaged hundreds of thousands of citizen scientists in astrophysics research.

After receiving my D.Phil in 2008, for which I was awarded the Royal Astronomical Society's Michael Penston prize, I remained on in Oxford for a few months as the Henry Skynner Junior Research Fellow at Balliol College (a fellowship endowed by "a 19th century house of ill repute in London") before moving to Yale University as a postdoc in Prof. Meg. Urry's group. In 2009, I received a NASA Einstein Fellowship, also held at Yale.

In 2012, I was offered a Swiss National Fund professorship grant to return to Switzerland. I started the "galaxy and black hole astrophysics" group at the Institute for Astronomy at the ETH Zurich, where I have been since.

I am interested in a wide range of topics in extragalactic astrophysics, from galaxy evolution to black holes using telescopes across the spectrum from X-rays to radio. I also focus on citizen science and increasingly, how citizen scientists and machine learning can combine to help us deal with science in the 2020s.

Experience

  • –present
    Assistant Professor of Galaxy & Black Hole Astrophysics, Swiss Federal Institute of Technology Zurich
  • 2009–2012
    Einstein Fellow, Yale University
  • 2008–2009
    Postdoctoral associate, Yale University
  • 2007–2008
    Henry Skynner Junior Research Fellow, Balliol College, Oxford University

Education

  • 2008 
    Oxford University, D.Phil astrophysics
  • 2004 
    Cornell University, B.A. physics, mathematics

Professional Memberships

  • Royal Astronomical Society
  • Swiss Society for Astronomy & Astrophysics
  • American Astronomical Society