Professor Alan Lester has been at the University of Sussex since 2000, becoming Professor of Historical Geography in 2006 and the University's first Deputy PVC (Interdisciplinary Research). He has held visiting lectureships at Rhodes University and the University of Fort Hare, an Erskine Fellowship at the University of Canterbury and an inaugural fellowship in humanities at La Trobe University. He has also been Research Professor (Historical Studies) at La Trobe. He is a world expert in studies of Empire and colonial history. He is coeditor of a leading book series on imperial history, Studies in Imperialism, and has written nine books over the last 25 years, the latest being Ruling the World: Freedom, Crisis and Liberalism in the Nineteenth-Century British Empire, Cambridge University Press, 2021.