Dr. Renée Hložek Wins 2021 McLean Award


Photo courtesy of Renée Hložek.

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE  – U of T Assistant Professor Renée Hložek is this year’s winner of the prestigious McLean Award.

The award recognizes an emerging research leader at the University of Toronto.

Hložek is an Assistant Professor at the Dunlap Institute for Astronomy and Astrophysics and the David A. Dunlap Department of Astronomy & Astrophysics. She specializes in cosmology, and uses data to try and understand what the Universe is made of, its structure, and how it is changing with time.

She says she is moved by the honour. “I spend so much of my time working on results, dreaming of new science, and often debugging code,” she says. “Normally that is its own reward, but it’s really incredible to be recognized for some of the work I’ve done and the scientific risks I’ve taken.”

Hložek works in the Simons Observatory collaboration, an international group of scientists building microwave telescopes in the Atacama desert of Northern Chile, in order to observe the afterglow of the Big Bang. She is also part of the Rubin Observatory’s Dark Energy Science Collaboration, which is gearing up to use the Legacy Survey of Space and Time (LSST) to unravel the mysteries of cosmic acceleration.

One McLean award of $125,000 is granted annually by the university, to support an emerging researcher in the field of physics, chemistry, computer science, mathematics, engineering sciences, and the theory and methods of statistics. The award comes from the Connaught Fund – the largest internal university research funding program in Canada.

This is the first time the McLean award has been granted to a scholar in Astronomy and Astrophysics since 2011.


For more information, please contact:
Meaghan MacSween
Communications and Multimedia Officer
Dunlap Institute for Astronomy & Astrophysics,
University of Toronto


The Dunlap Institute for Astronomy & Astrophysics at the University of Toronto is an endowed research institute with more than 90 faculty, postdocs, students and staff, dedicated to innovative technology, ground-breaking research, world-class training, and public engagement. The research themes of its faculty and Dunlap Fellows span the Universe and include: optical, infrared and radio instrumentation; Dark Energy; large-scale structure; the Cosmic Microwave Background; the interstellar medium; galaxy evolution; cosmic magnetism; and time-domain science. The Dunlap Institute for Astronomy and Astrophysics, David A. Department of Astronomy & Astrophysics and the Canadian Institute for Theoretical Astrophysics comprise the leading centre for astronomical research in Canada, at the leading research university in the country, the University of Toronto.