07 March 2019

Eleni Stavrinidou, principal investigator in the Laboratory of Organic Electronics, is to receive the 2019 L’Oréal-UNESCO For Women in Science Prize for her research into electronic plants. It will be presented by the Swedish minister for higher education and research.

Aishe Sarshad and Eleni Stavrinidou
Aishe Sarshad, Sahlgrenska Academy, University of Gothenburg, and Eleni Stavrinido, Laboratory for organic electronics. Linköping University.  Emma Burendahl
Eleni Stavrinidou’s research into electronic plants has aroused intense interest, both in Sweden and abroad. The research has two principal tracks. The first deals with the direct integration of organic electronic material into living plants. This track aims to develop technology based on the merger of plants and organic electronics, which in the long term involves the concept of, for example, the extraction and storage of energy, and the production of new materials. The second research track involves the development of bioelectronics for the monitoring and control of plant physiology. This may provide useful tools for, for example, those studying plant biology, in order to increase knowledge about fundamental processes. It may also find applications in agriculture and forestry in the optimisation and monitoring of growth.

Optimised processes

“My research is inspired by the natural world, which has optimised processes by evolution throughout millions of years. I love my work and I’m delighted to be able to contribute Eleni StavrinidouEleni Stavrinidou Photo credit Emma Burendahlto progress in my research field. It’s important for both women and men that we bring out more female role models”, she says.

In addition to Eleni Stavrinidou, Aishe Sarshad, stem cell researcher on the Sahlgrenska Academy at the University of Gothenburg, has also received a prize.

The L’Oréal Foundation, The Young Academy of Sweden, and The Swedish National Commission for UNESCO award the prize, which was established to celebrate women who show great potential within science and technology. The prize has a value of SEK 150,000 and a one-year mentor programme under the auspices of The Young Academy of Sweden. It will be presented in Stockholm by Matilda Ernkrans, newly appointed minister for higher education and research.

The purpose of the prize is to support young researchers at an important phase of their careers, and to encourage more women to aim for a career in research.

The L'Oréal-UNESCO For Women in Science

The scholarship is awarded in more than 45 countries, and the Swedish prize-winners have been selected by a jury with Eleni Stavrinidou, Matilda Ernkrans and Aishe SarshadEleni Stavrinidou, Matilda Ernkrans and Aishe Sarshadmembers from The Young Academy of Sweden and a representative for Scientific & Regulatory Affairs, L’Oréal Sweden. Chair of the jury is Claes Gustafsson, who is also chair of the Nobel Committee for the Nobel Prize in Chemistry.

Of 607 Nobel laureates in medicine, physics and chemistry, 20, or just over 3%, have been women: twelve in medicine, three in physics and five in chemistry. Two of these have received the international L’Oréal-UNESCO For Women in Science Prize before receiving the Nobel Prize.


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