MSCA Prize 2014 - who is the winner?

by Veselina ANGELOVA

On 18th November, three exceptional MSCA Fellows have been honoured in the areas of Promising Research Talent, Communicating Science, and Nurturing Research Talent. ​This year's award ceremony took place in the framework of the "Empowerment of the Next Generation of Researchers" conference of the Italian EU Presidency (Trento, Italy, 18-19 November). The honour was presented by DG Education and Culture Director-General Xavier Prats.

The "Promising Research Talent" prize was assigned to 29 year old Maanasa Raghavan,( a researcher in paleogenomics who has deciphered the genome sequence of a 24,000-year-old modern human. Maanasa, who despite her young age, has already many citations as first author in leading scientific publication (Nature and Science). She is now working on various aspects of the peopling of the Americas.

The "Communicating Science" prize went to 34 year old Shane Bergin, a physics lecturer at Trinity College Dublin and former MSCA fellow. Shane's beautiful idea was the campaign "DARTofPhysics", with which the researcher zapped the curiosity of Dublin's commuters in physics through interactive advertisements. Currently Shane is a regular contributor to an Irish radio show focused on the impact of science and scientists on society.

The prize for "Nurturing Research Talent" was given to 30 year old Sarah Bohndiek, a group leader at the University of Cambridge and Cancer Research UK. Sarah, who holds an MSCA Career Integration Grant, has developed projects for school pupils and is active in promoting science as a career to young people. Sarah leads an international research team on the development of new techniques for imaging oxygen and oxidative stress in cancer.

Congrats again to the winners and good luck to those of you who will compete in the next edition of the MSCA Prize competition!