Innovation

How the knowledge and ideas produced during research can translate into applications that would ultimately have an impact on people and society

Scientists design new solar cells to capture energy from rain

Scientists from Soochow University in China are working on a solar panel design for an efficient hybrid solar panel. The purpose of their invention is to capture energy from rain as well as traditional solar energy. They hypothesized that their graphene infused solar cells will split raindrops into positive and negative ions. With continued tests, the team hopes to get the solar panels on par with traditional solar panel efficiency. Nonetheless, their current output is fairly close to reaching this milestone. In the near future, solar panels could generate energy rain or shine. Read more [...]

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Plant nutrition Innovation Awards open for applications

Two researchers or research laboratories from across the world will be awarded a total of 60,000 euros each, as part of the 2018 Groupe Roullier Innovation Awards. Previous winners have had their work from a broad range of research areas, including plant nutrition, soil science, biocontrol and plant engineering, among others. This is a unique opportunity to get financial support for work which is likely to benefit the sponsor of the competition. Read more [...]

Tackling Europe’s biggest healthcare challenges

The Wild Card initiative, launched this month by EIT Health, seeks to engage the biggest and brightest minds in implementing ground-breaking and high-risk ideas in healthcare. The two areas of focus for 2018 are: application of artificial intelligence and big data to diagnostics and finding non-pharmaceutical solutions to antibiotic resistance. In this inspired opinion piece, Jan-Philipp Beck, COO at EIT Health, who is based in Munich, Germany, tells us about the main challenges ahead to find solutions to these issues. Read more [...]

The verdict is in from the European Digital City Index

Innovation hubs have now been mapped out in Europe; And their relative strengths identified. Nesta's 2016 European Digital City Index (EDCi), is a composite indicator which measures the receptiveness of cities across Europe for young digital firms. These indicators include access to funding, business environment and the prevalent entrepreneurial culture in each city. London, Stockholm, Paris, Amsterdam and Helsinki round out the top five spots. Meanwhile, Berlin, Barcelona, Copenhagen, Dublin and Vienna comprising the top ten. Find out more about the role that local conditions can play in encouraging the entrepreneurship and scaling-up of innovative businesses. Read more [...]

Time for serious hacking solutions in scholarly publishing

Hacking solutions to science problems are springing up everywhere. But what about the publishing industry? Where are the TripAdvisors for journals submissions, the Deliveroo for laboratory reagents? Clearly there are so many opportunities technology could bring to radically change the lives of scientists that it is a bit difficult to know where to start. Yet, the debate on the future of scholarly publishing may be about changing the incentives for researchers rather than embracing smart technology solutions. Find out from the experts in the industry who gathered in Frankfurt a few weeks ago. Read more [...]

Do we need a European Innovation Council?

As plans are underway to establish yet another instrument to support innovation in Europe, dubbed the European Innovation Council (EIC), entrepreneurs and research-based organisations have questioned the proposal. The determination that Research, Innovation and Science Commissioner Carlos Moedas has shown in developing the concept, begs for further questioning concerning the details of the implementation of the proposed EIC. In this article, EuroScientist investigates whether those closely involved in innovation believe EIC is a good idea. Read more [...]

One cultural shift away, towards fairer science

Technology-mediated interaction between geographically-distributed teams of scientists is about to happen on a much wider scale than before. And this trend is no longer limited to scientists from well-funded labs. It is now time for researchers to prepare for yet another shift in attitude when interacting with each other. They need to show greater willingness to give and share, encouraged by a new credit and reward system recognising the smallest contributions to science. Read more [...]

Are the disruptions of uberisation a bane or boon for science?

For every characteristic of uberisation, there is a parallel in the world of research. This raises the question of whether research was "uberised" before Uber even existed? In this article EuroScientist explores which aspects in research have been most impacted by technology, and the challenges ahead to leverage uberisation for the good of science and scientists. Read more [...]

Biological mechanisms discovery by globally-distributed research force

Not every scientist has the comfort of a well-equipped lab. However, newly available open platforms for biomedical in silico discovery could soon spark the brains of millions of researchers forming a geographically-distributed work force across the globe. This no longer requires working in a high-tech lab to contribute to the discovery of new mechanisms in health and diseases. Meanwhile, new opportunities for trainees, scientists and patients to practice annotation of genetic databases, could push the boundaries of open science towards countries where it has not yet been possible to work on such projects. In the second part of a two-part series, Barend Mons from the Leiden University Medical Centre, The Netherlands, explains how it could work in practice, and how close we are to realising this initiative. Read more [...]

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