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Tiberiu Harko
Babes-Bolyai University

What is your name, affiliation, academic position, and job title?
My name is Tiberiu Harko, presently I am a Scientific researcher affiliated with the Babes-Bolyai University in Cluj-Napoca, Romania.

What is your journey? (Where did you live, learn and work?)
I graduated with a PhD degree in theoretical astrophysics in the University of Hong Kong, in Hong Kong, China. After spending 15 years in Hong Kong, in the University of Hong Kong, I moved to the Sun Yat Sen University in Guangzhou. I also had a honorary research associate position in the Department of Mathematics of the University College London, UK. From 2019 I did join the Babes-Bolyai University in Cluj, Romania.

What is your field of research and/or what project are you involved in?
My field of research is gravitational physics, cosmology, and astrophysics. My main interest is related to modified theories of gravity.

Briefly describe your career trajectory to date. What positions have you held, when and where?
I have held post-doctoral, Research Assistant Professor and Associate Professor positions in the University of Hong Kong between 2001 and 2012. From 2012 to 2019 I held a position of Visiting Professor in the Sun Yat Sen University in Guangzhou, China, and a position of Honorary Research Associate, and Honorary Senior Research Associate in the Department of Mathematics in the University College London, UK.

What are your research plans?
I plan to extend my previous work on modified gravity, with a particular emphasis on geometric extensions of General Relativity.

How does CosmoVerse fit within those plans?
Cosmoverse can provide me some new perspectives on the latest observational data in cosmology.

Which of your skills are you most proud of, or find most useful?
I find the mathematical skills as being the most useful, when associated with the physical intuition.

What new skills would you like to learn in the next year?
A better understanding of the cosmological observations.

What are the most exciting open questions in your research area?
Dark energy, dark matter, the singularity problem, and the physics of the very early Universe.

What advances or new results are you excited about or looking forward to?
I would be the most excited to see some evidence, no matter how small, for quantum gravity.

What is your view on cosmic tensions? How does your work connect with this open question in the community?
Cosmic tension are an important problem, which must be investigated by keeping an open mind. My work on modified gravity naturally relates to this problem.

In your career so far, at what point were you the most excited, and what were you excited about?
Probably I have been the most excited about the discovery of the accelerating expansion of the Universe, in 1998-1999.

What is the biggest obstacle that is slowing down your research field right now?
There are no obstacles slowing down my research.

What role do you think a community network like CosmoVerse can play in developing theoretical astroparticle physics and cosmology?
CosmoVerse can play an important role by improving the communication and contacts within the astroparticle physics and cosmology communities.

What do you like and dislike about being a scientist?
There is nothing I dislike in being a scientist

What’s your favourite food? Why?
I don’t have any favourite food.

Your favourite scientist and/or science fiction film?
P. A. M. Dirac.

How do you relax after a hard day of work?
With my family.

What non-physics interests do you have and want to share?
Reading books.

If you were not a scientist, what do you think you would be doing?
If I were not a scientist, I would do whatever I could to become one.

What do you hope to see accomplished scientifically in the next 50 years?
Quantum gravity.

In your view, what’s the most important challenge that humanity faces currently?
Large scale wars.

What question would you have liked us to ask you, and what would you have answered?
Question: Why did I join CosmoVerse? Answer: To have fun.