The 4th Annual USERN Congress and Prize Festival: Full Story from Budapest

11/8/2019 4:13:20 PM

The 2019 USERN Congress and Prize Festival was held today in the Vigado Palace in Budapest, Starting with the Welcome Message from the Hungarian Deputy State Secretary for Innovation at Ministry for Innovation and Technology, Mr. Tibor Gulyás that was narrated on his behalf


[… I warmly welcome you in Hungary. We are honoured and proud to have been chosen by your prestigious organization to host your congress this year.]


[… it is also a privileged that in my current position as I attend events, Budapest and Hungary have become not only a narrower region, but a major scientific meeting point of Europe and the world.]


[…our common motto is "Science without Borders" and seeing their work on the subject, there is a close relationship between our interest and our scientific orientation.]


The Five USERN Laureates received their Prize from the hands of USERN President, Professor Nima Rezaei, President of Avicenna International College, Dr. Shahrokh Mirzahosseini, and the Semmelweis University Rector, Professor. Laszlo Rosival. USERN is honoured and privileged to be able to recognize nearly 10 thousand young exceptional sciencetists worldwide, nominate them for USERN Prize 2019, and on top of that recognize the best from this elite group to receive the USERN Prize, in recognition of their outstanding contribution to science without borders. Here is a brief introduction of each USERN Laureate, their scientific life, and their prestigious projects that earned them this recognition.  


1. USERN Formal Sciences Laureate: Dr. Lucas Lacasa from United Kingdom

Dr. Lacasa received his PhD in the physics of Complex Systems from University of Madrid and served as Assistant Professor in Applied Mathematics afterwards, before moving to Queen Mary University of London in 2013. His core interest are the study of Complex Systems and the interface between network science and time series analysis, the latter being the topic for his EPSRC Early Career Fellowship as well as the project for which he is bestowed the USERN Prize in Formal Sciences in 2019: Bridging sIgnal Processing and NETwork science (BIPNET)       


2. USERN Physical Sciences Laureate: Dr. Giulia Grancini from Switzerland/Italy 

Her project entitled: "Multi-Dimensional Ferroelectric Hybrid Perovskites for Advanced Optoelectronics " brought her the USERN Physical Prize in 2019, a task several years in the making as her being a Team Leader at the Ecole Polytechnique Fédérale de Lausanne (EPFL). 

Dr. Grancini graduated from Politecnico of Milan in 2008 and did a PhD there afterwards, and another 3-year post-doctoral fellowship at the Italian Institute of Technology in Milan, before joining the group of Prof. Nazeeruddin at EPFL in 2015. Since 2016, she is Team Leader at EPFL, aiming to address the fundamental physics behind advanced photovoltaic devices. She has contributed with pioneer works to the understanding of the interface physics which governs the operation of organic and hybrid perovskite solar cells.


3. USERN Biological Sciences Laureate: Dr. Ajeet Kaushik from USA

Dr. Kushik finished his PhD in chemistry at the Jamia Millia University and National Physical University in India in 2011. He is currently an Assistant Professor of Chemistry, and exploring advanced electrochemical sensing systems and nanomedicine for personalized health wellness at Department of Natural Sciences of Division of Sciences, Art, & Mathematics at Florida Polytechnic University. 

He received a Junior Research Investigator Award in Personalized Nanomedicine by Society for Personalized Nanomedicine in 2017 and has worked on his USERN Prize Project: "Nano-Bio-Technology for Personalized Health Care" ever since. Unfortunately Dr. Kaushik could not make it to the congress due to visa issuance and sent a video instead.


4. USERN Medical Sciences Laureate: Dr. Eugenia Morselli from Italy/Chile      

Dr. Morselli is currently directing her lab on "Autophagy" at the department of physiology at the Pontificia Universidad Católica de Chile (the Pontifical Catholic University of Chile)/

The research line of the laboratory aims to understand the cellular mechanisms that explain the development of metabolic diseases associated with obesity, in line with Dr. Morselli’s USERN-Prize-winning project: Mechanisms of Hypothalamic Autophagy in Obesity. This fascinating study includes rat and mouse hypothalamus, neuronal and glial cell lines to investigate mechanisms of "autophagy" in hypothalamus that are responsible for maintaining homeostasis and regulating appetite. The practical results of this study will help generate therapeutic strategies for the treatment of obesity and other metabolic diseases. Unfortunately, Dr. Morselli could not make it all the way from Chile to Budapest.


5. USERN Social Sciences Laureate: Dr. Benjamin Sovacool from Denmark/UK   

Dr. Savacool is the director of the Danish Center for Energy Technology at the Department of Business Technology and Development at Aarhus University. He is also professor of energy policy at the University of Sussex, where he directs both the Center on Innovation and Energy Demand, one of six End Use Energy Demand Centres in the United Kingdom, and the Sussex Energy Group. 

Dr. Savacool is the Lead Author to the next Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) Sixth Assessment Report (AR6) on "Mitigation and development pathways in the near-to mid-term". His interdisciplinary project in the same area "Social justice in an era of climate change and energy scarcity" won him the USERN Prize in Social Sciences in 2019. 


Professor Shahriar Nafisi, Dean of TUMS Medical School accepted the hosting for 2020 USERN Congress on behalf of Tehran University of Medical Sciences (TUMS) from Professor Rosival. 



Report By:

Farzaneh Rahmani 



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