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Brussels, 16 November 2006

2006 Marie Curie Excellence Awards recognise five outstanding researchers

The European Commission has today announced the winners of the 2006 Marie Curie Excellence Awards. This year’s prizes go to Michal Lavidor from Israel/United Kingdom, Frank Keppler from Germany, Chris Ewels from United Kingdom/France, Nicolas Cerf from Belgium and Paola Borri from Italy/United Kingdom. Their scientific work covers areas as varied as: cognitive neuroscience and psychology, atmospheric science and environmental science, nanotechnology and materials science and physics. The Marie Curie Excellence Awards, with grants of € 50.000 awarded each year to five outstanding researchers, recognise the excellence of researchers who have benefited from European support schemes. The award ceremony took place at the “Ecole Polytechnique Fédérale de Lausanne”. The awards showcase bright new talent within the European scientific community. Details of the winners can be found in MEMO/06/433

“The Marie Curie Awards are one way in which we acknowledge the excellent research being done in Europe”, said European Science and Research Commissioner, Janez Potočnik. “We want to encourage the potential of all European researchers and highlight the positive effects of moving within or outside the EU for the purposes of research.”

The 2006 Marie Curie Excellence Award winners are:

  • Michal Lavidor for “Interhemispheric stimulation promotes reading enhancement”
  • Frank Keppler for “Discovery of climate-relevant trace gases from terrestrial ecosystems”
  • Chris Ewels for “Computer modelling of doping and defects in graphite and carbon nano-tubes”
  • Nicolas Cerf for “Quantum information and quantum computation”
  • Paola Borri for “Semiconductor nanostructures and their ultra-fast response to laser light”

The Marie Curie Excellence Awards recognise results achieved by researchers in any field of science who have benefited from European support schemes. These support schemes, grouped together as “Marie Curie Actions” aim to develop and transfer research expertise and competence, consolidate and widen researchers’ career prospects and promote excellence in European research. They are open to research in all fields of scientific and technological research from EU Member States, countries associated with the Framework Programme and third countries. Eligibility for the various schemes is based on research experience and expertise, not age. All career levels are catered for, from researchers at the start of their career (i.e. post-graduate students) to world-class researchers with well-established scientific expertise. Actions are open to businesses, universities and other institutions active in research.

The 2006 winners were chosen by a five members Grand Jury, chaired by Dr. Ing. Jozef Ritzen, Director of the University of Maastricht. The other Grand Jury Members were: Ms Kristin Clemet, former Norwegian Minister of Education and Research, Prof. Athanassios Fokas, from the University of Cambridge, Dr. Birgitta Nordström, of the Niels Bohr Institute and Dr. Malcolm Skingle, Director of European Academic Liaison at GlaxoSmithKline.

The Seventh Research Framework Programme will devoted substantially increased resources - €4b over seven years – to activities to support the mobility of researchers within its “People” programme.
For more information on Marie Curie Actions:

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