The participants compete for a number of “core” prizes on the basis of a written description of their work, their exhibited material and the interviews with the Contest Jury. In addition to this, a limited number of “special donated” prizes are also awarded by the Jury, to offer some winners the opportunity to benefit from the specific experiences linked to these prizes. It is up to the Jury to decide whether a prize-winner can receive both a core prize and a special donated prize.
The Core Prizes are the principal prizes awarded, and are cash prizes. In the case of a team winning such a prize, the amount is shared between the members of the team.
The are three categories of Core Prizes:
Honorary Prizes Associated with the First Prizes
There are a number of Honorary Awards and Special Donated Prizes of a technical and cultural nature.
The London International Youth Science Forum attend the two-week London meeting
The Stockholm International Youth Science Seminar attend week long Stockholm meeting
Special Donated Prizes
European Patent Office: offers a prize for originality (for up to 6 contestants) which includes a 5 day visit to their offices in Munich
INTEL ISEF 2013: awards prizes for 3 projects (up to 9 students) offering the winners the opportunity to take part at INTEL ISEF 2013 Phoenix, Arizona. USA
The Joint Research Centre Prize: offers a one-week stay at one of the JRC’s member offices
European Organization for Nuclear Research (CERN): offers a project prize (for up to 3 people) of a week’s visit to their Geneva site
European Fusion Development Agreement (EFDA-JET): home of plasma physics and fusion research, offers one winner a one week stay at their Culham, Oxford site
The European Molecular Biology Laboratory (EMBL): offers one winner a one week placement at their centre for molecular biology in Heidelberg
The European Space Agency (ESA): offers one winner the opportunity to take part in a major five-day space science conference in Europe
European Souterhn Observatory (ESO): offers the winner of a single-student project, a visit to their facilities in Chile including trips to the Paranal Observatory and ESO’s Scientific Centre in Santiago
European Synchrotron Radiation Facility (ESRF): operator of Europe’s most powerful synchrotron radiation source, offers the leader of a winning project a one week visit to their site in Grenoble
European X-Ray Free-Electron Laser Facility GmbH (XFEL.EU): offers one winner a one week placement at European XFEL in Hamburg
Honorary Prizes associated with the first prizes
Up to three contestants receive an all-expenses paid trip to London to attend the London International Youth Science Forum (LIYSF). The prize covers the travel costs from the country of origin, accommodation, meals, registration and participation in full programme of activities.
LIYSF brings together 300 science students from around 60 countries worldwide. The programme, which includes visits to industrial sites and world class research laboratories and facilities, lectures, demonstrations and seminars from leading scientists, highlights the links between individual fields of study and introduces all participants to the latest thinking across the broad range of science.
Participants are able to interact with the eminent speakers, to debate on current issues and to explore the way in which their chosen subject relates to other studies and has an impact on the world at large.
Each year’s LIYSF becomes a multicultural community, and, with its busy social activities programme, provides a unique opportunity to meet and develop friendships and contacts across the world. The participants attending LIYSF are usually between the age of 17 and 21 years old.
For further information, please contact
Royal Parade Mews
Stockholm International Youth Science Seminar (SIYSS) is an annual weeklong event for young international scientists, arranged in connection with the Nobel festivities by the SIYSS Committee of the Swedish Federation of Young Scientists in collaboration with the Nobel Foundation.
The history of SIYSS dates as far back as 1976 when the first seminar was organized by the Swedish Federation of Young Scientists together with the Nobel Foundation, with inspiration from the Society for Science & the Public in USA. Turning out a great success, the SIYSS program has continued combining the encounter with Swedish science and the Nobel Prize Awarding Ceremonies with an intense social program ever since then.
The program aims to promote international understanding and friendship, bringing together young people from all over the world with similar interests. The participants are selected in different ways, some are winners of national science fairs, and others represent organizations for young scientists or are selected by merit at their home universities. Whatever their background, they all have two things in common: a great interest in natural sciences and a curiosity for other cultures and people.
The program of the week comprises of scientific activities and lectures as well as unique occasions to meet the Nobel Laureates. Furthermore, the students are introduced to Swedish science and research as well as Swedish culture and customs. However, the main event of the week is a big seminar where the participants present their research to each other and to Swedish students.
The week culminates with the Nobel festivities where the SIYSS participants attend both the Nobel Reception at Nordiska Museet and the Nobel Prize Award Ceremony at the Stockholm Concert Hall, followed by the Nobel Banquet at the Stockholm City Hall as well as the Nobel Night Cap, the final festivity after the banquet. With its connection to the Nobel Prizes, SIYSS is widely considered the most prestigious youth science event in the world. Former participants often witness about how the program has inspired them to continue doing research and that the week in Stockholm was a truly unique experience.
For further information, please contact
The SIYSS Organizing Committee
International Cooperation Prize
The European Union Contest for Young Scientists is based on national competitions that take place in the participating countries. There are two sorts of participations: full participation where the contestants are eligible to win the prizes mentioned above, and guest participation where teams of contestants from countries which are not formally part of the competitive process can nonetheless demonstrate their projects in line with the general rules.
Hence a specific Prize, the International Cooperation Prize, is awarded to the best project submitted by teams from guest countries. The amount of this prize is € 5,000.
Special Donated Prizes
The Special Donated Prizes are offered to contestants who according the EUCYS Jury would benefit from the specific experience that these prizes offer. They are study visits to leading scientific organisations:
EIROforum members each award individual prizes as follows:
European Patent Office: offers a prize for originality (for up to 6 contestants) which include a 5 day visit to their offices in Munich
The Joint Research Centre Prize: offers a one-week stay at the JRC´s member offices
INTEL ISEF 2013: awards prizes for 3 projects (up to 9 students) offering the winners the opportunity to take part at INTEL ISEF 2013 Phoenix, Arizona, USA
EIROforum is a partnership of Europe’s eight largest intergovernmental research organisations. As world leaders within their respective fields of science, the member organisations of EIROforum constitute the vanguard of European science. Operating some of the largest research infrastructures in Europe devoted to the exploration of key questions on the origin and the evolution of matter and biological life in our Universe, they enable European scientists to engage in truly cutting-edge research, and be competitive on a global scale.
In support to the EU Young Scientists competition initiative, EIROforum members are pleased to offer one-week visits/placements to their organisations. To ensure an optimum value of the experience to the prize winner, these will be offered on the basis of the relevance of the activities of the host organisation to the field of interest of the nominated student. (For safety and sometimes security reasons, age restrictions may apply.)
The EIROforum organisations are:
European Organization for Nuclear Research (CERN), Geneva, Switzerland was founded in 1954. CERN’s main research area is particle physics. Complex machines such as particle accelerators and detectors are developed and used to study the basic constituents of matter. The Large Hadron Collider (LHC), a 27-kilometre underground circular machine, began colliding particles at very high energy in 2010 giving new insights into the origin of the Universe. CERN is also famous for the invention of the World Wide Web, which was originally developed to give scientists access to data irrespective of their location. In 2012, LHC experiments discovered a new particle consistent with long-sought Higgs boson. www.cern.ch.
CERN offers a prize for the winning project, of a week visit for up to three people involved in that project. Topics are to be related to a scientific or engineering field of relevance to CERN to include a large spectrum of projects, especially on the engineering side. Minimum age 18 years.
European Fusion Development Agreement Culham, UK was established in 1999. EFDA-JET is a framework between Euratom and various fusion research programmes in many EU countries. Its aim is to provide an infrastructure for fusion research. JET, the largest tokamak fusion reactor in the world, investigates the potential of fusion power as a safe, clean and virtually limitless energy source for future generations. It paves the way for ITER, an engineering project currently being constructed in southern France, which is designed to be the first fusion reactor to release more energy than is needed to power it. www.jet.efda.org.
EFDA-JET will award a one week stay at the JET facilities for one person. Topics include: plasma wall interaction, real time control of plasmas, computer modelling of plasmas, magneto hydrodynamics, engineering related topics to build tailored diagnostics. Minimum age 16 years.
The European Molecular Biology Laboratory (EMBL) has its headquarters in Heidelberg, Germany and has four other sites in Europe. It was founded in 1974 and is the flagship of molecular life sciences in Europe. It encompasses a broad spectrum of molecular biology research, from the smallest units at the level of proteins and genes via cells and organisms up to structural biology operating beam lines. Bioinformatic services are invaluable for researchers all over the world who may use the biological databases developed and maintained by EMBL’s outstation, the European Bioinformatics Institute in the UK. In 2010, the EMBL Advanced Training Centre (ATC), a building in the form of a double helix, was inaugurated at the main site in Heidelberg. It hosts world-class conferences and provides state-of-the-art training opportunities. www.embl.org
EMBL will award a one week placement at their Heidelberg laboratories for one person. Eligible topics will be in the field of molecular biology. Minimum age 18 years.
European Space Agency (ESA) Paris, France. ESA’s mission is to provide cooperation in space science and to ensure that this science benefits citizens in Europe and world wide. Research programmes concern, among others, Earth Observation, Human Spaceflight, Launchers, Navigation, Space Science and Engineering as well as Telecommunications. Their focus is the Solar System and the Universe in general. The development of satellite technologies serves to achieve high-level research goals and to promote European industries at the same time. www.esa.int.
European Southern Observatory (ESO), Garching, near Munich, Germany, and Chile. ESO is the foremost intergovernmental astronomy organisation in Europe and the world’s most productive ground-based astronomical observatory by far. It is supported by 15 countries, and carries out an ambitious programme focused on the design, construction and operation of powerful ground-based observing facilities enabling astronomers to make important scientific discoveries. ESO also plays a leading role in promoting and organising cooperation in astronomical research. ESO operates three unique world-class observing sites in Chile – La Silla, Paranal and Chajnantor – and is planning a 40-metre-class European Extremely Large optical/near-infrared Telescope, the E-ELT, which will become “the world’s biggest eye on the sky”. www.eso.org.
Only single-student projects are eligible for ESO’s prize. The Laureate is offered a trip to ESO’s facilities in Chile with visits planned to the Paranal Observatory and ESO’s Scientific Centre in Santiago. Minimum age 18 years.
European Synchrotron Radiation Facility (ESRF) Grenoble, France, is supported and shared by 19 European countries. The ESRF is the most powerful synchrotron radiation source in Europe; it is a stadium-sized machine producing many beams of bright X-ray light. These are guided through a set of lenses and instruments called beamlines where the X-rays illuminate and interact with samples of material being studied. Here, at the more than 40 specialized experimental stations, physicists work side by side with chemists and materials scientists. Biologists, medical doctors, geophysicists and archaeologists have become regular users. Companies also send researchers, notably in the fields of pharmaceuticals, cosmetics, petrochemicals and microelectronics. Each year 6,000 researchers travel to Grenoble where they work in a first-class scientific environment to conduct exciting experiments at the cutting edge of modern science. www.esrf.eu.
ESRF will award the prize of a one week visit to the epn Science Campus in Grenoble, for the leader of a project in a topic related to the structural and dynamical study of condensed matter, materials and living matter using synchrotron radiation X-rays to achieve sub-nanometric resolution in both fundamental and applied research. This could be in the fields of biology, chemistry, cultural heritage, engineering, environmental sciences, materials research, medicine or physics. The visit will be undertaken in parallel with that of the winner of the ILL prize. Minimum age 18 years.
The Institut Laue-Langevin (ILL), Grenoble, France, operates the most intense neutron source in the world. It is used to examine conventional and newly created materials. The applications include the analysis of the structure of new materials for future electronic tools, the measurement of stresses in mechanical materials, and examinations of the behaviour of complex molecular assemblies, particularly in a biological environment. The ILL also tackles questions relating to the fundamental properties of matter. Recent research includes the world’s first magnetic soap, great developments on gamma-ray optics or potential Alzheimer treatments. www.ill.eu
ILL will award a prize of a one week visit to the epn Science Campus in Grenoble, for the leader of a project in a topic related to a scientific or engineering field of relevance to ILL. The visit could include witnessing technical developments being made in connection with the neutron beams, such as detectors and optical devices, or taking part in an experimental session. Areas covered include: neutron research and technology in the disciplines of chemistry, nuclear physics, chemistry, biology, crystallography and magnetic.
The visit will be undertaken in parallel with that of the winner of the ESRF prize. Minimum age 18 years.
European XFEL (XFEL.EU), Hamburg, Germany. European XFEL is a linear X-ray laser with unique characteristics. Currently under construction, it is due to start of user operation in 2016. The facility will open up new research opportunities for a whole range of scientific fields, such as medicine, pharmacy, biology, chemistry, physics, materials science and nanotechnology. www.xfel.eu
European XFEL will award a one week placement at their site in Hamburg for one person presenting a physics project. The visit will provide insights into the process of building a new, cutting edge international research facility.
The EIROforum organisations constitute a success story for Europe. They:
The EIROforum organisations have world-class research infrastructures. They:
EIROforum is also committed to promoting and supporting innovative science education in Europe, as demonstrated by two major science education projects.
Science on Stage (formerly Physics on Stage)
Science on Stage has built strong national networks throughout Europe – many of which are still active today. The international science teaching festival has:
Since 2009, Science on Stage has been organised by Science on Stage Europe, an independent organisation, at a national level.
Science in School
A quarterly journal to inspire and inform European science teachers, Science in School is:
Articles, many of which can be used directly in the classroom, include:
Topics include biology, physics and chemistry and also maths, earth sciences, engineering and medicine.
EIROforum Contact Person:
The EPO has been involved in the European Union Contest for Young Scientists since 1997, offering advice to national organisers and promoting awareness of patent issues to contestants. Two years later, the EPO Prize for Originality was established as a special award.
The EPO Prize is intended to encourage the development of qualities that distinguish successful inventors. Up to six contestants have the opportunity to win the Prize, which includes an invitation to Munich for five days to visit the EPO as well as local companies. Winners are also given the opportunity to experience Munich’s cultural heritage.
What is the European Patent Office?
The European Patent Office (EPO) was created in 1977 with the aim of providing a centralised system for granting patents in European countries and rationalising the patent procedure. There are currently 37 member states in the EPO.
The EPO has three official languages: German, English and French. You may file a patent at the EPO in any one of these languages. The EPO is entirely self-financing and is overseen by administrative council comprising representatives from the member countries. At present the EPO has a staff of over 6 800, with offices in Munich, The Hague, Berlin and Vienna. If you would like to know more about the EPO or patents in general, the EPO has a stand at the Contest where they will be happy to answer your questions. There is also a patent awareness lecture during the Contest.
From School Project to Licence Agreement - A Patenting Success Story
It all started when Karsten Weiss entered the 1997 “Jugend Forscht” (Germany’s young scientist contest) and won a top prize for his project on sensors and conductive foam material. A senior official from the veterinary office of the state of Baden-Württemberg spotted a write-up of the project on the Internet and wondered whether the technology involved could be adapted to overcome problems encountered with automated milking equipment. Karsten took up the challenge and designed a machine that is capable of reproducing the techniques of hand-milking. “Digikuh” allows the user to measure the force applied on the cow’s teats at any given point and time, solving the problem of ill-fitting devices that lead to discomfort and infection.
The resulting apparatus won a second prize at the 1998 EU Contest for Young Scientists. The judges commented that his project was a “fine combination of sensor technology, electronics and computer software that solved a real-life problem in a simply executed and well-thought out way”. Karsten was given good advice on patenting, and filed for a national German patent at an early stage. As the project developed he filed for a further national German patent to cover new aspects of his invention, and then later still, filed for patent protection around the world. As a result he has been able to sign a lucrative exclusive licensing agreement with a major agricultural machinery company, from whom he also receives continuing support for both his patenting strategy and further product development. Asked if he had any patenting tips to pass on to young scientists in the light of his experience, Karsten gave the following advice:
Patenting, The EU Contest and Young Scientist Competitions
Contestants in young scientist competitions should be aware that their projects are their own property. The legal term for this is “intellectual property”. It can be protected by various means such as patents, copyright, and registration of designs or trademarks. Of these, patenting is perhaps the most relevant means for protecting young scientists’ projects.
Normally participation in a young scientist competition leads to ideas “being made available to the public”. Contestants should be aware that, in most cases, a project which has been “made available to the public” before filing a patent application, can no longer be patented. It is also important not to make details of an invention “available to the public” by other means, such as by press releases etc. Even just discussing a project with someone can count as making it available to the public. This advice may seem rather late for many contestants, but it is hoped that even if a patenting opportunity has been lost this time, the lesson will not be forgotten! All too often young scientists are deterred from patenting by misconceptions about cost or how complicated the procedure is. The cost of patenting is meaningful only when compared to the potential financial gain to be made from the patent. Contestants interested in patenting should therefore investigate the market and develop an idea of the commercial worth of their invention. Enquiries should then be made into national and international patenting costs, starting at the information department of the national patent office. Generally, costs break down into three areas: those of the patent office(s), legal representation and translations. Also, patent costs are usually low to start with but increase with time. Whilst not usually obligatory, it is recommended that contestants make use of a patent attorney. Patent attorneys are highly qualified specialists with a technical or scientific background who assume much of the responsibility for processing the patent application.
Finally, as well as looking into the financial value of a patent, contestants should try to establish whether their idea, or something similar, has already been patented.
Many national patent offices and patent libraries offer assistance in this area. It is also possible to use the Internet to conduct simple searches for patent literature in the databases of national and regional patent offices. The esp@cenet service of the members of the European Patent Organisation is a good starting point for this.
For more information
The EPO or your national patent office will be pleased to help you further at www.epo.org (which will also provide a direct link into the national office sites).
The European Commission’s in-house science service, the Joint Research Centre (JRC), consist of 7 Institutes based in 5 Member States. JRC is a reference centre for science and technology issues the serves the interests of the Member States while at the same time remaining independent of special interests. Four Institutes has jointly donated a one-week stay at the JRC’s member and the host is selected according to the interests of the prize winner.
Those four Institutes are:
Institute for Health and Consumer Protection (IHCP)
The mission of the JRC Institute for Health and Consumer Protection is to protect the interests and health of the consumer in the framework of EU legislation on chemicals, food, and consumer products by providing scientific and technical support, including risk-benefit assessment and analysis of traceability. Its activities are supporting EU policies in the following areas - genetically modified organisms, nanotechnology, health and environment, consumer products and nutrition and alternatives to animal testing.
Institute for Protection and Security of the Citizen (IPSC)
The JRC Institute for Protection & Security of the Citizen provides scientific and technological support to European Union policies in different areas, including global stability and security, crisis management, maritime and fisheries policies and the protection of critical infrastructures. Moreover, the Institute performs statistics and information analysis for the evaluation of the effectiveness of policies. IPSC's core competencies are in the field of engineering and information technologies, satellite image processing and analysis, open source information analysis, structural mechanics and risk assessment.
Institute for Environment and Sustainability (IES) based in Ispra, Italy
The JRC's Institute for Environment and Sustainability (IES) provides scientific and technical support to EU policies for the protection of the European and global environment.
Institute for Reference Materials and Measurements (IRMM) based in Geel, Belgium
The Winners of the Intel ISEF 2013 Prize will be invited to take part as an observer in the Intel International Science and Engineering Fair (Intel ISEF), a program of Society for Science & the Public, the world’s largest international pre-college science competition. The event will be held on May 12-17, 2013 at Phoenix, Arizona (USA).
The European Association for Chemical and Molecular Sciences (EuCheMS) brings together over 40 chemical societies which together represent more than 160,000 chemists in academia, industry, government and professional organisations in 32 countries across Europe.
Founded in 1970, EuCheMS aims to provide a single voice on key science and policy issues, based on expert scientific knowledge and to promote chemistry as a provider of solutions in a changing world. EuCheMS Divisions cover all areas of chemistry, the central science, underpinning a wide range of other disciplines, and everyone is welcome to participate in our scientific events, such as EuCheMS Chemistry Congress.
EuCheMS is pleased to present a prize of € 500 for the best chemistry entry in the EU Young Scientists Contest. For more information on EuCheMS please see www.euchems.org
Host Special Donated Prizes:
Prize of Minister of Education, Science, Research and Sport of the Slovak Republic
This Prize will be awarded to one project which has a very promising potential for future development.
Volkswagen Slovakia Special Prize
The Volkswagen Slovakia Special Prize will be awarded to one project in the field of engineering. The winner of this prize will receive a € 3,000.
The Industrial Property Office of the Slovak Republic Special Prize
The Industrial Property Office of the Slovak Republic Special Prize will be awarded to one project in the field of engineering that showed the greatest dose of originality and creativity and is worth € 2,000.