National Academy of Sciences

From left to right: Paula England and Claude Desplan

NYU Abu Dhabi faculty Paula England and Claude Desplan were among the 84 new members and 21 foreign associates who were elected

Press Release

New York University Abu Dhabi (NYUAD) is pleased to announce that two faculty members have been elected to the prestigious National Academy of Sciences in the US, which elects new members annually based on their exceptional achievements in original research.

Paula England is a Silver Professor of Sociology at NYU New York and an affiliated faculty member at NYUAD, where she teaches a course on Gender and Society. England’s research has focused on gender inequality at work and at home; she has written on the sex gap in pay, occupational segregation, how couples divide housework, factors leading to divorce, and the wage penalty for motherhood. She has also examined social class differences in family and childbearing patterns. England was President of the American Sociological Association in 2014-15 and was editor of the American Sociological Review in 1994-96.

Claude Desplan is a Silver Professor of Biology at NYU New York and an affiliated faculty at NYUAD. His areas of interest include genetic and mechanistic approaches to neural development, focusing on the Drosophila visual system. Desplan has spent his scientific life analyzing molecular and genetic mechanisms controlling cell fate decisions as well as their evolution. Desplan serves on multiple scientific advisory boards and in funding agencies. He is an elected member of the American Association for the Advancement of Science, an elected foreign member of EMBO, and an elected fellow of the New York Academy of Sciences.

England and Desplan were among the 84 new members and 21 foreign associates who were elected in recognition of their distinguished and continuing achievements in original research.


Congratulations to our two distinguished faculty on this momentous recognition of their continued achievements in original research by the National Academy of Sciences. Both Claude and Paula are at once remarkable teachers and acclaimed scholars, advancing vital research in their respective fields. In his role as Co-Director of NYU Abu Dhabi's Center for Genomics and Systems Biology, Claude is leading innovative advances in life sciences within the region, while Paula is furthering critical research in the areas of gender and inequality    

NYUAD Provost Fabio Piano

About NYU Abu Dhabi

NYU Abu Dhabi is the first comprehensive liberal arts and research campus in the Middle East to be operated abroad by a major American research university. NYU Abu Dhabi has integrated a highly selective undergraduate curriculum across the disciplines with a world center for advanced research and scholarship. The university enables its students in the sciences, engineering, social sciences, humanities, and arts to succeed in an increasingly interdependent world and advance cooperation and progress on humanity’s shared challenges. NYU Abu Dhabi’s high-achieving students have come from over 115 countries and speak over 115 languages. Together, NYU's campuses in New York, Abu Dhabi, and Shanghai form the backbone of a unique global university, giving faculty and students opportunities to experience varied learning environments and immersion in other cultures at one or more of the numerous study-abroad sites NYU maintains on six continents.