The Oxford Centre for Hebrew and Jewish Studies has finally filled a prestigious academic post after a previous candidate pulled out because of new immigration rules.
Dr Sara Hirschhorn, a post-doctoral fellow in Israel studies at Brandeis University in the United States, is due to become the new Sidney Brichto Fellow in Israel studies in September.
An expert on the settler movement, she will combine the role with a research lectureship at Oxford University.
Israeli academic, Dr Hizky Shoham, from Tel Aviv University, had initially been appointed to the post. But, according to the centre’s president, Dr David Ariel, regulations introduced by the UK Border Agency had meant it was “impossible” to obtain a work permit in time for him to start the job in January.
The university had then been required by the Border Agency to re-advertise the post. “At that point, Dr Shoham decided not to reapply and accepted a position in Israel,” Dr Ariel said. “This allowed the selection committee to consider a strong pool of new applicants, of which Dr Hirschhorn was the first choice.”
He said: “We are confident we have, at last, found the right candidate and look forward to her arrival in Oxford.”