Queen’s is preparing to give a warm welcome to Professors Mathias Thoenig (Lausanne) and Christina L. Davis (Harvard) – the first Centenary Visiting Professors in Philosophy, Politics, and Economics.

The creation of a Visiting Professorship to mark the 100th anniversary of the establishment of the Philosophy, Politics, and Economics (PPE) degree at Oxford University was announced in November 2021. This post has been possible thanks to an anonymous gift from an Old Member of The Queen’s College and a friend of University College.

The first Centenary Visiting Professor in PPE, Professor Mathias Thoenig will be joining the Department of Economics from the School of Business and Economics (HEC) at the University of Lausanne for the academic year 2022-23, as the University’s first Centenary Visiting Professor in PPE, and will be a Visiting Fellow at University College.

Ahead of his arrival in Oxford Professor Thoenig remarked:

“After 100 years of excellence, rigour and breadth, PPE is more than ever a landmark educational program and a vibrant source of inspiration. Its distinctive inter-disciplinary flavour makes PPE uniquely suited to understanding the complex societal challenges of our time. As an economist and teacher, I am honoured and delighted to be engaged in this intellectual journey.”

Professor Christina L. Davis will take over in 2024-25, as the second Centenary Visiting Professor in PPE (and a Supernumerary Fellow at The Queen’s College). Professor Davis will be visiting from the Department of Government at Harvard University; she is also the Susan S. and Kenneth L. Wallach Professor at the Radcliffe Institute, and the Edwin O. Reischauer Professor of Japanese Politics. Professor Davis commented:

“I am very honoured to receive the Centenary Visiting Professorship that commemorates the creation of the Philosophy, Politics, and Economics degree. During my year at Oxford, I will conduct research that integrates political and normative perspectives to evaluate the goals of industrial policy and international trade agreements. As governments debate how to pursue economic security, a broader perspective is necessary to fully understand the implications of trade policy for society. I am excited to engage with students and colleagues at Oxford in discussion about the conditions that make trade politically sustainable and equitable.”

This endowed Visiting Professorship will rotate annually between the two colleges and the individual subjects that make up the PPE course. The aim of the Professorship is to generate and inspire thinking across disciplinary boundaries and at undergraduate, postgraduate, and faculty level.

The Colleges and Departments that will host this Professorship look forward to the opportunity to welcome some of the world’s top academic talent to Oxford in the next few years and beyond.