Institute of Advanced Studies (IAS)


Join the official launch of the Centre for French and Francophone Research

16 November 2023, 5:00 pm–7:00 pm

people walking towards the Louvre pyramid in Paris

Featuring Lord Peter Ricketts of the Franco-British Council and former UK ambassador to France, UCL Provost Dr Michael Spence, Prof Philippe Marlière and Prof Mairéad Hanrahan.

This event is free.

Event Information

Open to

All | UCL staff | UCL students






Institute of Advanced Studies


IAS Common Ground
G11, ground floor, South Wing
UCL, Gower Street, London
United Kingdom

The Institute of Advanced Studies is delighted to launch a new research centre, The Centre for French and Francophone Research, led by Prof Patrick Bray. After a few introductory remarks from UCL President & Provost Dr Michael Spence there will be a roundtable about “French and the Future”.

The speakers will be Lord Peter Ricketts (Chair of the Franco-British Council and former UK ambassador to France), Dr Minh-hà Pham (Counsellor for Science and Technology at the French Embassy in the UK), Prof Philippe Marlière and Prof Mairéad Hanrahan (UCL SELCS). 

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The Centre for French and Francophone Research provides a showcase for the diversity of French and Francophone studies in a global context across several disciplines at UCL, including literary studies, history, philosophy, art history, anthropology, global health, and the physical sciences. The goal is to create a space for researchers and students from across the university broadly interested in the French-speaking world to share their work and to promote interdisciplinary collaboration.

Read more on the Centre's website: ucl.ac.uk/institute-of-advanced-studies/centre-french-and-francophone-research

About the Speakers

Lord Peter Ricketts

Chair at Franco-British Council

He has sat as a crossbencher in the House of Lords since 2016. He was appointed as HM Ambassador to France in January 2012, and served in that role until January 2016, when he retired from the Diplomatic Service. He became Chair of the Franco-British Council in the United Kingdom in March 2020, working alongside Hervé Mariton in France.

Dr Minh-hà Pham

Counsellor for Science and Technology at French Embassy in the UK

From 2002 to 2007, she held the position of Deputy Director in the European and International Relations Department of the CNRS, in charge of cooperation for the Asia-Pacific area. From September 2007 to September 2010, she was seconded by the CNRS to ParisTech, where she served as delegate for international relations. She then headed the Derci (European Research and International Cooperation Department) of the CNRS from 2010 before being appointed, in September 2013, Counsellor for Science and Technology at the French Embassy in Washington, D.C., USA. In September 2018, she was elected Vice-President for International Relations at PSL. In this capacity, in January 2019, she is responsible, along with four other personalities, for leading the consultation on the "Welcome to France" plan.

More about Dr Minh-hà Pham

Prof Philippe Marlière

Professor of French and European Politics at School of European Languages, Culture and Society, UCL

His reseach interests include French politics; political parties notably the French Socialist party; the Sarkozy presidency and "Sarkozysm"; political ideologies; Citizenship, religion and laicite, French social movements; France and the European Union; Politics and collective memory; French sociology and social theory (notably Bourdieu, Durkheim, Halbwachs).

More about Prof Philippe Marlière

Prof Mairéad Hanrahan

Chair of French at School of European Languages, Culture and Society, UCL

My research interests focus primarily on twentieth-and twenty-first-century French writing, with a special emphasis on poetic fiction. I am known in particular for my work on Jean Genet and Hélène Cixous, but I have also published on a range of other modern authors from Rimbaud to Duras. Most of my research can be described as close reading of texts, strongly underpinned by a theoretical framework informed above all by psychoanalysis, deconstruction and gender studies. Issues of gender and sexuality have been a constant focus in my work, as has the relation between art and politics. Nearly all my work deals in some way with literature's relationship to its various others: psychoanalysis, philosophy, mathematics, politics, etc.

More about Prof Mairéad Hanrahan