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FNR Awards 2018 10 YEARS OF REWARDING RESEARCH WITH IMPACT

For the 10th year running, Luxembourg’s research and innovation community gathered in the Halle des poches à fonte in Belval, to reward Luxembourg’s best research and science communication efforts.

Photos by Olivier Minaire, videos by MOAST

To mark the 10th edition of the Awards, the FNR presented six prizes – each doted with 5000 EUR – to researchers and science communicators who over the past year have demonstrated outstanding efforts in areas such as science outreach, innovation and science communication.
"Today we celebrate science and research in Luxembourg"

Marc Schiltz, FNR Secretary General opened the 10th FNR Awards Ceremony

"We are proud of all researchers in Luxembourg, you are our heroes"

Marc Hansen, Minister Delegate for Higher Education & Research in his speech stressed the importance of the FNR Awards, which not only recognise the best scientists and science communication projects, but also prove that the governments continued investment in public research is bearing fruit for the good of the country.

The FNR Awards Ceremony was hosted by Olivier Catani, presenter at RTL Luxembourg.

AND THE WINNERS ARE...

OUTSTANDING PHD THESIS

ERIC FINN SCHAANNING

IMPERIAL COLLEGE LONDON

“Fire sales and systemic risk in financial networks.”

“Outstanding through originality and through the significant impact already made on systemic risk monitoring.” (Reviewer)

Eric Finn Schaanning developed a new mathematical model to simulate fire sales and price-mediated contagion in a financial crisis, a model that has been implemented in central bank stress tests.

The jury selected this thesis for the following reasons:

- It is an excellent combination of theoretical work and practical applications with real data.

- The originality lies in the implementation of the fire sales model by several European central banks.

Other remarkable results of the work are:

- An analysis of financial contagion based on data from 26 of the largest European banks

- Presentations at 36 university and industry conferences

- Two published articles, five working papers and two in progress.

OUTSTANDING SCIENTIFIC PUBLICATION

BEN THUY

MUSÉE NATIONAL D’HISTOIRE NATURELLE (MNHN)

‘Paleozoic echinoderm hangovers: waking up in the Triassic’, published in Geology

“This paper is the definitive study at the present time. One of the most exciting papers I have read in the last ten years.” (Reviewer)

Ben Thuy’s research questioned an earlier paradigm regarding the extinction of a large group of animals. It investigated the problem worldwide and in a variety of environments. The presented data are therefore much more robust than in documents and comments of other researchers.

The jury selected this publication for the following reasons:

- It is an excellent and thought-provoking article published in the top-ranked journal in its category.

- Global importance and thus high visibility for Luxembourg.

- Work by three of the world’s most respected scientists in the field of Echinoderma.

- This work provides new data essential for a better understanding of the massive extinction of the late Permian – and perhaps also of the current global loss of biodiversity.

OUTSTANDING PROMOTION OF SCIENCE TO THE PUBLIC

NICOLAS DIDIER & GUILLAUME TRAP

ON BEHALF OF THE LUXEMBOURG SCIENCE CENTER TEAM

Opening of the Luxembourg Science Center

“Outstanding effort. And this is only the beginning.” (Reviewer)

With the Luxembourg Science Center, Nicolas Didier and Guillaume Trap have developed a place where the general public can gain interactive scientific experience from an early age. The Center had 45,000 visitors in its first year (12,000 expected).

The jury selected the project for the following reasons:

- Great dedication, commitment and perseverance from highly motivated employees and a transdisciplinary team.

- High visibility, high impact potential,

- The project is aimed at a non-professional audience of any age from 5 years.

OUTSTANDING PROMOTION OF SCIENCE TO THE PUBLIC

THIERRY LUTGEN & JUTTA MEYER

ELISABETH-ANNE ASBL

“Indiana Jos – op de Spuere vu Fuerscher an Entdecker”

“Research and discovery is now part of the daily business of elisabeth maisons relais.” (Reviewer)

The project “Indiana Jos” developed by elisabeth-Anne asbl promotes science among children in day-care centres and youth centres in Luxembourg through non-formal education and interactive scientific workshops.

The jury selected this project for the following reasons:

- It is a passionate project of an organisation whose mission is not the promotion of science.

- The “Train the Trainer” approach has proved to be very effective.

- Research and discovery are now part of everyday life in the day-care centres run by elisabeth asbl.

OUTSTANDING RESEARCH-DRIVEN INNOVATION

TOM WIRTZ

& DAVID DOWSETT, RACHID BARRAHMA, OLIVIER BOUTON, JEAN-NICOLAS AUDINOT

LUXEMBOURG INSTITUTE OF SCIENCE & TECHNOLOGY (LIST)

“VECTOR500 SIMS: a unique tool for high resolution high-sensitivity nano-analysis.”

“This project and the business which has resulted is right at the top of the value tree.” (Reviewer)

Tom Wirtz and his team have developed a high-resolution analytical instrument in the nanometer range that has attracted the interest of international academic and industrial circles, including Zeiss.

The jury selected this project for the following reasons:

- It shows how early financial support for a technically complex but feasible market opportunity can be provided through the collaboration of donors, host institutions, knowledgeable customers and a dedicated team.

- It has the potential to become a beacon of what can be achieved through commitment and efforts supported by Luxembourg’s financing mechanisms.

OUTSTANDING RESEARCH-DRIVEN INNOVATION

PASCALE ENGEL DE ABREU

UNIVERSITY OF LUXEMBOURG

“LALA – Lauter lëschteg Lauter”

“The project has wide appeal and application, applying evidence-based methodology to the learning of literacy in large pupil populations.” (Reviewer)

Pascale Engel de Abreu has developed an early intervention programme for Luxembourg kindergartens that supports the basic literacy of children in multilingual Luxembourg.

The jury selected this project for the following reasons:

- Very important for Luxembourg, since many pupils with a migrant background have difficulties with literacy at pre-school age.

- It is also directly relevant to support the learning of the Luxembourg language.

- The award winner has developed and tested the product according to strict standards.

"Congratulations to the 2018 winners of the FNR Awards!"

Véronique Hoffeld, Chair of the Board of the FNR, concluded the ceremony part of the 2018 FNR Awards.

TIME TO CELEBRATE & NETWORK

FNR ATTRACT Fellow Prof Dr Paul Wilmes (LCSB University of Luxembourg), Olivier Catani (RTL - FNR Awards host), Michèle Weber (FNR)
Jean Paul Bertemes (FNR) & FNR PEARL Chair Prof Paul Verissimo

Call for the FNR Awards 2019

The FNR invites all scientists and science communicators to apply for the FNR Awards 2019. The closing date for entries is 8 February 2019. Further information will be communicated on the FNR website in due course.

10 YEARS OF REWARDING RESEARCH WITH IMPACT: A LOOK BACK

Since the first FNR Awards Ceremony, the FNR has presented almost 60 FNR Awards to researchers and science communicators in Luxembourg.

2009

At the first FNR Awards Ceremony in 2009, there were only two categories. There was also no trophy yet, the award was a cash prize.

2009 winners

OUTSTANDING SCIENTIFIC PUBLICATIONS

Nicolas D’OREYE (MNHN)

Joël MOSSONG (Laboratoire National de Santé)

Michel PAULY (Université du Luxembourg)

OUTSTANDING PROMOTION OF SCIENCE TO THE PUBLIC

Patrick DELHALT (MNHN) / Nicole SCHLICHTENHORST (Syndicat PRO-SUD) / André Stemper (Université du Luxembourg)

Pierre GALLEGO / Véronique DEGARDIN (MNHN)

Paul ZIMMER (AJSL) / Patrick DELHALT (MNHN)

2010

As of 2010, awardees get a trophy keepsake along with a cash prize.

2010 winners

OUTSTANDING SCIENTIFIC PUBLICATIONS

Guy SCHUMANN (University of Bristol; Recherche Public Gabriel Lippmann 2005-2008)

Simone NICLOU et Uros RAJCEVIC (CRP-Santé)

OUTSTANDING PROMOTION OF SCIENCE TO THE PUBLIC

Eric BUTTINI (MNHN)

Georges KOHNEN, Stuart ATKINSON & Michèle GOEDERT (Association Maarkollef Niederanven éducation aux sciences asbl)

Aline FISCHER & Sandrine AMANN (MNHN)

2011

2011 winners

OUTSTANDING SCIENTIFIC PUBLICATIONS

Alex BIRYUKOV and Dmitry KHOVRATOVICH (University of Luxembourg)

Adrien OTH (European Center for Geodynamics and Seismology)

OUTSTANDING PROMOTION OF SCIENCE TO THE PUBLIC

David DEGOUIS & Virginie SCHMITT (Ecole Privée Notre-Dame Sainte-Sophie): Schoolproject ‘Semaine de la Science 2010’.

Pascal DAMAN & Janine GOEDERT (Lycée de Garçons Luxembourg)

Danièle MOES, Anne-Marie TERNES & Monika DIETERLE (CRP-Santé)

2012

2012 winners

OUTSTANDING SCIENTIFIC PUBLICATION

Fabrizio FENICIA (CRP Gabriel Lippmann)

Etienne MOUSSAY and Guy BERCHEM (CRP Santé)

OUTSTANDING PROMOTION OF SCIENCE TO THE PUBLIC

Gérard WAGENER / Astrid MAISCHAK / Sandra THERWER (Déi kleng Fuerscher)

Amandine BERNARD (CRP Santé)

Thierry FRENTZ / Romain KAELL (Ville de Differdange)

FNR SPECIAL AWARD

Pierre SECK, President of the Section des Sciences de l’Institut Grand-Ducal.

2012 saw the introduction of the ecosphere trophy, which was used until 2016 inclusive

2013

2013 winners

OUTSTANDING SCIENTIFIC PUBLICATION

Pascale M. J. ENGEL DE ABREU (University of Luxembourg)

OUTSTANDING PROMOTION OF SCIENCE TO THE PUBLIC

Benoît SMETS (European Center for Geodynamics and Seismology – ECGS), Nicolas D’OREYE (ECGS / Musée National d’Histoire Naturelle – MNHN), François KERVYN (Musée Royal de l’Afrique Centrale) & Adrien OTH (ECGS)

Patrice CAIRE/ Grégory NAIN (Interdisciplinary Centre for Security, Reliability and Trust at the University of Luxembourg, SnT)

FNR SPECIAL AWARD

Fernand WAGNER, Vice-President, President and Honorary President of the European Association for Astronomy Education.

2014

2014 saw the addition of a new category: Outstanding PhD thesis

2014 winners

OUTSTANDING PHD THESIS

Bob C. SCHROEDER (Imperial College London)

Patrick AUGUSTIN (Stockholm School of Economics)

OUTSTANDING SCIENTIFIC PUBLICATIONS

Alex REDINGER, Dominik M. BERG, Phillip J. DALE and Susanne SIEBENTRITT (University of Luxembourg)

Joanna BAGINSKA and Bassam JANJI (CRP-Santé)

Alessandro MICHELUCCI, Thekla CORDES and Karsten HILLER (University of Luxembourg)

OUTSTANDING PROMOTION OF SCIENCE TO THE PUBLIC

Danielle HOFFMANN, Pascale ENGEL DE ABREU, Caroline HORNUNG, Romain MARTIN, Christine SCHILTZ, Anne-Marie SCHULLER and Sonja UGEN (University of Luxembourg)

Jeff KOHNEN (Olympiades Luxembourgeoises des Sciences Naturelles asbl)

Pascal DAMAN (Lycée de garçons de Luxembourg)

2015

In 2015, the FNR Awards Ceremony was held in Belval for the first time.

2015 winners

OUTSTANDING PHD THESIS

Shree K. SHARMA (University of Luxembourg – SnT)

Catherina SCHREIBER (University of Luxembourg)

OUTSTANDING SCIENTIFIC PUBLICATION

Ivan NOURDIN and Giovani PECCATI (University of Luxembourg)

OUTSTANDING PROMOTION OF SCIENCE TO THE PUBLIC

Elisabeth JOHN (University of Luxembourg)

FNR SPECIAL AWARD

Claude WEHENKEL, former Director of the Centre de Recherche Public Henri Tudor (now part of the Luxembourg Institute for Science and Technology).

2016

In 2016, the FNR Awards Ceremony was held in the Halle des Poches à Fonte, directly under the famous old Belval blast furnaces for the first time.

2016 winners

OUTSTANDING PHD THESIS

Zhe LIU (University of Luxembourg)

OUTSTANDING SCIENTIFIC PUBLICATIONS

Jérôme PAGGETTI & Etienne MOUSSAY (Luxembourg Institute of Health)

Matteo POLETTINI (University of Luxembourg)

OUTSTANDING PROMOTION OF SCIENCE TO THE PUBLIC

Astrid MAISCHAK (Déi Kleng Fuescher a.s.b.l.); Gérard WAGENER (Lycée des garcons Esch); Maryse LALLEMAND (École Fondamentale Dellhéicht)

2017

There were two new additions to the awards in 2017: A new category - Outstanding Research-Driven Innovation - was introduced. It was also the year we said goodbye to the ecosphere trophy and introduced a new one (see below for more about the trophy).

2017 winners

OUTSTANDING PHD THESIS

Esther BREITHOFF (University of Bristol)

OUTSTANDING SCIENTIFIC PUBLICATIONS

Pranjul SHAH & Paul WILMES (LCSB at the University of Luxembourg)

Mahesh DESAI (Luxembourg Institute of Health)

OUTSTANDING PROMOTION OF SCIENCE TO THE PUBLIC

Guy PUTZ & Will REITER (Lycée Technique d’Ettelbruck)

Christian PENNY (Luxembourg Institute of Science and Technology)

OUTSTANDING RESEARCH-DRIVEN INNOVATION

Pouyan ZIAFATI (LuxAI S.A.)

Pranjul SHAH and Paul WILMES (LCSB at the University of Luxembourg) for the project “HuMiX technology (host-microbe interaction modelling).” (FNR Proof-of-Concept project)

The FNR Award trophy

As nearly the whole Luxemburgish public research is now gathered on the Belval Research and Innovation Campus, we wanted to create a new award that ideally would link the past and the present of this site: firstly steel – which for many years in the 20th century contributed to the development and richness of Luxembourg – and secondly, the sole natural resource Luxembourg has in the 21st century – knowledge.

The result is a two-piece, 3D-printed unpolished steel trophy, assembled in a 3D polymer plinth, the latter being poplar and maple plated.

The new trophy was designed by Rodolfo Baïz, and the 3D impression of the steel elements done in Belgium. The bases were printed in Luxembourg and the whole trophy assembled at the Technoport / FabLab Luxembourg.

dimensions: 84,4 x 85,8 x 287,5 mm - weight: 1,85 Kg

Credits:

Photos by Olivier Minaire

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