The Falling Walls Lab Zurich sends 3 Finalists with winning ideas to Berlin

On 21 September 2016, the ETH Zurich hosted the Falling Walls Lab Zurich 2016. 

15 emerging scientists pitched their ideas from different fields of research and society in 3 minutes each. A distinguished jury made up of representatives from academia and industry selected the most intriguing presentation. 

The three winners of the Falling Walls Lab Zurich will travel to Berlin and participate in the global Lab Finale on 8 November 2016. The winners will also receive a ticket for the Falling Walls Conference on 9 November 2016 within the scope of an A.T. Kearney scholarship.

Meet the winners

1. Place: Etienne Jeoffrey, France, Empa - Breaking the Wall of Roads Decline

Billions of euros and millions of tons of greenhouses gases could be saved if road pavements could be repaired instead of being replaced. We embed nanoparticles that can heat under a magnetic field in the meltable binder of the road. Removing the microcracks in the whole material allows for the extension of the roads lifetime.

2. Place: Denis Schapiro, Germany, University of Zurich - Breaking the Wall of the Cancer Ecosystem

Current cancer research focuses on the hallmarks of cancer. Central to almost all hallmarks is a deregulation of cell-to-cell interactions in the tumor microenvironment. An in-depth analysis of these very complex ecosystems is necessary. Imaging Mass Cytometry (IMC) enables such an analysis by imaging of up to 120 proteins simultaneously at a sub-cellular resolution.

3. Place: Joshua Urieli, Ireland, Zurich University of Arts - Breaking the Wall of Sanitation

1 in 3 people worldwide live without safe toilets. Container sanitation address the problem by collecting human faeces in containers from toilets. These toilet services are smelly, costly, and unsafe. PooPac is a bioactive paper bag that holds faeces inside a toilet and suppresses the smell. The biodegradable PooPac is sealed for transport, and directly composted, removing all contact with faeces.

Etienne Jeoffrey was awarded first place at the Falling Walls Lab Zurich and will be one out of three finalists travelling to Berlin. 

Meet the jury:

Professor Dr. Detlef Günther, VP Research and Corporate Relations, ETH Zurich (Jury Chairman)
Dr. Martin Jaekel, Head of R&D Unit, Zurich University of Applied Sciences - ZHAW
Dr. Barbara Lothenbach, Head Thermodynamic Modelling Group, Laboratory for Concrete and Construction Chemistry, Empa - Swiss Federal Laboratories for Materials Science and Technology
Lesley Spiegel, Head of Institute for Design Research, Zurich University of the Arts - ZHdK
Jean-Pierre Vuilleumier, Master in Finance, Managing Director, Swiss Startup Invest


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