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Our Speakers


Francesco Sette Francesco Sette

Francesco Sette is a pioneer in research with synchrotron radiation. He co-invented the world's first high-energy-resolution, high-intensity soft X-ray source, which quickly found its way into many synchrotron light facilities around the globe and developed a new generation of inelastic X-ray scattering beamlines. In 2001, Sette became Director of Research at the ESRF, playing a pivotal role in the conception and launch of the ESRF Upgrade Programme 2009-2018. In 2009, he took up the post of Director General as the fourth Director General of the ESRF. Sette has served as a member of the Advisory Committees of major light sources, including The European X-FEL in Hamburg (Germany), the LCLS at Stanford National Accelerator Laboratory (USA) and the Scientific Council at DESY.

Source (ESRF)
John Kelly III John Kelly III

Dr. John E. Kelly III has nearly four decades of experience innovating and leading in the Information Technology (IT) industry. During this time, he has played numerous significant technical and business roles driving IBM's leadership in technologies ranging from semiconductors to supercomputers to Artificial Intelligence (AI) cognitive systems. In his current role as Executive Vice President, Dr. Kelly is responsible for helping to guide IBM's global technical and business success. He is focused on overseeing IBM's enterprise wide Intellectual Property, Security and Privacy, academic, industrial, and government partnerships, as well as its technical community. He is also currently responsible for leading the company's Watson Health.

Source (IBM)
Marcia McNutt Marcia McNutt

Marcia McNutt (B.A. in physics, Colorado College; Ph.D. in Earth sciences, Scripps Institution of Oceanography) is a geophysicist and the 22nd president of the National Academy of Sciences. From 2013 to 2016, she was editor-in-chief of Science journals. McNutt was director of the U.S. Geological Survey from 2009 to 2013, during which time USGS responded to a number of major disasters, including the Deepwater Horizon oil spill. For her work to help contain that spill, McNutt was awarded the U.S. Coast Guard’s Meritorious Service Medal. She is a fellow of the American Geophysical Union, Geological Society of America, the American Association for the Advancement of Science, and the International Association of Geodesy. McNutt is a member of the National Academy of Engineering, the American Philosophical Society and the American Academy of Arts and Sciences, and a Foreign Member of the Royal Society, UK, the Russian Academy of Sciences, and the Chinese Academy of Sciences. In 1998, McNutt was awarded the AGU’s Macelwane Medal for research accomplishments by a young scientist, and she received the Maurice Ewing Medal in 2007 for her contributions to deep-sea exploration.

Ottoline Leyser Ottoline Leyser

Professor Dame Ottoline Leyser is the Chief Executive of UK Research and Innovation (UKRI) and Regius Professor of Botany at the University of Cambridge. Prior to this, she was the Director of the Sainsbury Laboratory, University of Cambridge. She has made important contributions to understanding the role of plant hormones in developmental plasticity, using the control of shoot branching in Arabidopsis as a model system. Ottoline Leyser has a long-term interest in research culture and its effects on the quality and effectiveness of the research system. She chaired the Nuffield Council on Bioethics project examining these issues and has been actively engaged in work aimed at generating a more inclusive, creative and connected culture. She has worked extensively in science policy.

Source (UKRI)
Anthony Cheetham Anthony Cheetham

Professor Sir Tony Cheetham is a Research Professor at the University of California, Santa Barbara, and a Distinguished Visiting Professor at the National University of Singapore. He was formerly the Goldsmiths’ Professor of Materials Science at the University of Cambridge (2007-2017) and the Treasurer and Vice-President of the Royal Society (2012-2017). Cheetham’s research in Materials Chemistry spans both inorganic materials and metal-organic frameworks, and he makes extensive use of major synchrotron X-ray and neutron facilities. He is a member of several national academies, including the Royal Society, the Leopoldina, the World Academy of Sciences (TWAS), and the American Academy of Arts and Sciences. Beyond the laboratory, Cheetham was the Science Advisor to the Board of Unilever (2000-2008), a co-founder of the venture capital fund, NGEN, and has been the Science Advisor to Sheikh Saud bin Saqr Al Qasimi, Ruler of Ras al Khaimah, UAE, since 2007.

Source (UCSB)


Opening Session:

Sethuraman Panchanathan Sethuraman Panchanathan

The Honorable Sethuraman Panchanathan is a computer scientist and engineer and the 15th director of the U.S. National Science Foundation (NSF). NSF is an $8.8B independent federal agency and the only government agency charged with advancing all fields of scientific discovery, technological innovation, and STEM education.

Dr. Panchanathan has a distinguished career in science, technology, engineering, and education that spans more than three decades. He served as executive vice president of the Arizona State University Knowledge Enterprise, where he also founded the Center for Cognitive Ubiquitous Computing. Prior to becoming director of NSF, Panchanathan served on the National Science Board for six years and has also served on and chaired numerous high-level research and innovation organizations. He is a fellow of the National Academy of Inventors, the American Association for the Advancement of Science, the Association for Computing Machinery, and other prestigious science and engineering organizations. Dr. Panchanathan’s scientific contributions have advanced the areas of human-centered multimedia computing, haptic user interfaces, person-centered ubiquitous computing technologies for empowering individuals with a range of abilities.

Information on other panelists will follow soon...

Session 1:

Fabiola Gianotti

Fabiola Gianotti is the Director-General of CERN, the European laboratory for particle physics.

She received a Ph.D. in experimental particle physics from the University of Milano, Italy. Since 1994 she is a research physicist at CERN, and since 2013 an honorary Professor at the University of Edinburgh. She is a foreign member of several academies, including the Italian Academy of Sciences, the National Academy of Sciences of the United States, the French Academy of Sciences, and the Royal Society, London.

Dr Gianotti has worked on several CERN experiments, covering detector R&D and construction, software development and data analysis. A large part of her work was devoted to the search for the Higgs boson. From March 2009 to February 2013 she held the elected position of project leader (”Spokesperson”) of the ATLAS experiment. On 4 July 2012 she presented the ATLAS results on the search for the Higgs boson in a seminar at CERN that saw the formal announcement of the discovery of this particle by the ATLAS and CMS experiments.

Robert Shelton Robert Shelton

Dr. Robert Shelton is President of the GMTO Corporation, the international nonprofit organization building the Giant Magellan Telescope. Prior to joining the Giant Magellan Telescope in 2017, Dr. Shelton was the President of the Research Corporation for Science Advancement, America’s first foundation dedicated solely to funding science. Previously, Dr. Shelton served as the 19th President of the University of Arizona, the Executive Vice Chancellor and Provost of the University of North Carolina Chapel Hill, and the Vice Provost for Research for the University of California system. His leadership role involving large astronomy project includes governing board service on the Keck Observatories (California Association for Research in Astronomy), the LSST Corporation (Rubin Observatory), the Space Telescope Institute Council (Hubble Telescope), and the Association of Universities for Research in Astronomy.

As a distinguished physicist, Dr. Shelton studied experimental condensed matter focusing on novel materials and their properties. During this time, he authored more than 240 research publications in refereed journals and 100 contributing papers. Dr. Shelton received his B.S. from Stanford University and his M.S. and Ph.D. from the University of California, San Diego.

Michel Spiro

Michel Spiro (76y), former President of CERN Council (2010-2012), former director of IN2P3 (National Institute for Nuclear Physics and Particle Physics) in CNRS (2003-2010), is now Emeritus Research Director at CEA, Past President of the French Physical Society and President of IUPAP (International Union of Pure and Applied Physics). He is also chair of the Steering Committee of the International Year of Basic Sciences for Sustainable Development in 2022 and chair of the board of the Foundation CERN & Society. He is fellow of the European Physical Society, “Officier dans l’ordre de la Légion d’honneur” and “Officier dans l’Ordre du Mérite”. He received many prizes. His research extended from particle physics experiments at CERN (W and Z discovery) to astroparticle physics experiments (detection of solar neutrinos and search for dark matter). He wrote many books.

Daniel Zajfman Daniel Zajfman

Born in Belgium, in 1959, Daniel Zajfman moved to Israel in 1979. He received a BSc (1983) and a PhD in atomic physics (1989) from the Technion - Israel Institute of Technology, followed by a Post-Doctoral at the Argonne National Laboratory, in the US. In 1991, he joined the staff of the Weizmann Institute's Department of Particle Physics (now the Department of Particle Physics and Astrophysics). Since 2001, he has been an external member of the Max Planck Institute of Nuclear Physics in Heidelberg, Germany. Between 2006 and 2019, he served as the tenth President of the Weizmann Institute of Science, becoming, at the age of 47, the youngest president the Institute ever had. Since 2020, he is the Chair of the Academic Board of the Israel Science Foundation, the main competitive research funding agency focused on basic research.

Session 2:

Antje Boetius

Antje Boetius is a polar and deep-sea researcher and director of the Alfred Wegener Institute Helmholtz Centre for Polar and Marine Research. As Professor of Geomicrobiology and Head of the Joint Research Group for Deep-Sea Ecology and Technology at the Max Planck Institute for Marine Microbiology, she is involved in the MARUM Cluster of Excellence at the University of Bremen. Boetius has participated in 50 expeditions on international research vessels. Her recent research focuses on the effects of climate change on the Arctic Ocean and the biodiversity of the deep sea. She is the recipient of the DFG's Gottfried-Wilhelm-Leibniz and Communicator Prizes, the German Environmental Award 2018 and was awarded the Federal Cross of Merit in 2019 amongst many other merits. She is member of the National Academy of Sciences Leopoldina and other national and international academies and an active science communicator.

Michael Kaschke Michael Kaschke

Prof. Dr. Michael Kaschke was elected President of the Stifterverband (Association for the Promotion of Science and Humanities in Germany) in January 2022. He is also Chairman of the Supervisory Board of the Karlsruhe Institute of Technology (KIT), Shareholder of Robert Bosch Industrietreuhand KG, and a Member of the Supervisory Boards of Henkel AG & Co. KGaA, Robert Bosch GmbH, and Ottobock SE & Co. KGaA. From 2011 – 2020, Michael Kaschke was President and CEO of Carl ZEISS AG. Prior to this appointment, he served as Member of the Executive Board starting in 2000.

Michael Kaschke is also an Honorary Professor at the Electrical Engineering and Information Technology department at the Karlsruhe Institute of Technology (KIT), where he gives lectures on subjects such as optical medical technology and innovation process management. He received an honorary doctorate from Friedrich Schiller University in Jena in 2018 and he was appointed Adjunct Professor at the Center for Medical Physics and Biomedical Engineering at the Medical University of Vienna in 2020. He was elected to be a member of the German National Academy of Sciences Leopoldina in Halle, Germany in 2021. From 2014 to 2020, he was a Member of the German Council of Science and Humanities, one of Germany's most important scientific-political advisory committees.

Information on other panelists will follow soon...

Session 3:

Information on other panelists will follow soon...

Session 4:

Magdalena Skipper

Magdalena Skipper is Editor in Chief of Nature and Chief Editorial Advisor for the Nature portfolio. Previously, she served as Editor in Chief of Nature Communications, Executive Editor for the Nature Partner portfolio, Senior Editor at Nature and Chief Editor of Nature Reviews Genetics. She has a keen interest in promoting open science practices and publishing innovation that looks beyond standard manuscript publishing. In her role as Editor in Chief of Nature, she works towards fostering interdisciplinary and collaborative research, with an emphasis on inclusion across diverse stakeholder groups. A geneticist by training, she holds a PhD from the University of Cambridge, UK. She sits on the advisory board of the Centre for Personalized Medicine at the University of Oxford, the newly created Einstein Foundation for Promoting Quality in Research and the NAS Strategic Council for Research Excellence, Integrity and Trust. She presides over the jury for the Nature Award for Mentoring in Science and the Nature Award for Inspiring Women in Science. She is a Fellow of the International Science Council.

Gerald Haug Gerald Haug

Gerald Haug is a paleoclimatologist, marine geologist and paleoceanographer. He studies the development of the Earth climate over thousands to millions of years. He analyses sediment cores from the sea floor and lakes, amongst several other climate archives. The chemical composition of the different sediment layers provides clues to the prevailing climatic conditions at the time of deposition. This allows quantitative reconstructions of past climate conditions and the underlying processes in the ocean, atmosphere and climate system.

Sudip Parikh Sudip Parikh

Sudip Parikh, PhD, AAAS became executive publisher of the Science family of journals in January 2020. The son of Indian immigrants, Parikh completed undergraduate studies at the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill. Early in his career Parikh was a Presidential Management Intern at the NIH and was awarded a National Science Foundation Graduate Research Fellowship while earning his Ph.D. in macromolecular structure and chemistry from the Scripps Research Institute in La Jolla, CA. He has spent two decades at the nexus of science, policy, and business and is an active member of the scientific advocacy community.

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Session 5:

Rolf Heuer

Prof. Heuer is an experimental particle physicist and most of his scientific work has been related to the study of electron-positron reactions, development of experimental techniques, as well as construction and running of large detector systems. He was research scientist at the University of Heidelberg and then 15 years staff member at CERN. In 1998, he was appointed to a chair at the University of Hamburg and in December 2004, he became research director for particle and astroparticle physics at the DESY laboratory. Prof. Heuer has been CERN Director-General from January 2009 to December 2015. His mandate is characterised by the start of the Large Hadron Collider (LHC) 2009 as well as its energy increase 2015, the discovery of the H-Boson and the geographical enlargement of CERN Membership. From April 2016 to April 2018, he was President of the German Physical Society. He is President of the Council of SESAME (Synchrotron-Light for Experimental Science and Applications in the Middle East) and was the Chair of the European Commission’s Group of Chief Scientific Advisors until November 2020.

Inmaculada Figueroa Inmaculada Figueroa

Inmaculada Figueroa is Deputy Director General for Internationalization of Science & Innovation in the Spanish Ministry of Science & Innovation and Vice-Chair of the European Strategy Forum for Research Infrastructures (ESFRI). She is MSc in Electrical Engineering by the Universidad Politécnica de Madrid.

Before joining the Ministry of Science and Innovation in 2009 she worked for more than 17 years in the Space domain at the Spanish National Research Center for Aerospace, being responsible for the Assembly, integration and verification of scientific satellite payloads in national and European Space Agency (ESA) projects.

Information on other panelists will follow soon...