Participant profiles

 (in alphabetical order)

Schermafbeelding 2016-06-28 om 19.46.29Chantal Ama Agbemabiese, Nagasaki University

My research focuses on the molecular epidemiology and whole genome evolution within a global context of rotaviruses detected in Africa during periods before and after country-wide rotavirus vaccine introductions.


Schermafbeelding 2016-06-28 om 19.46.40Sophie Andrews, University of Oxford
I am a final year DPhil (PhD) student in the Nuffield Department of Medicine at the University of Oxford and my research focus is immune evasion in clinically latent HIV-1 and HIV-2 infection. More specifically, I am investigating how immunological selective pressure drives escape mutations in the surface-expressed gp120 envelope protein, and also the role of the viral accessory protein nef. 

Schermafbeelding 2016-06-28 om 19.46.58Jasmine Barra, KU Leuven
I use high through put proteomics combined with RNA-seq and ChIP-seq profiling to gain novel insights into p53 biology. I will focus on its direct and indirect regulatory effects and possibly identify new critical mediators of p53 activity yet relevant for its function as a key tumor suppressor.

Schermafbeelding 2016-06-28 om 19.47.10Anil Ufuk Batmaz, University of Strasbourg
My research concerns cognitive effects of different visual interfaces used in robotics. I further investigate the impact of virtual reality goggles on human hand gestures in terms of learning, time and precision.


Schermafbeelding 2016-06-28 om 19.47.30Angel E Benitez Collante, Pierre Louis’ Public Health Doctoral School (Paris Descartes University and UPMC University)
The core interest of my PhD is the interdependence between the Hospital economic efficiency and the healthcare quality, which importance is increasing because of the self-management hospital model adopted in most countries in the world. Hospitals are faced with numerous economic and structural challenges without reducing the quality of healthcare. The self-management tendency inspires the search for a greater economic efficiency which can be associated with lower healthcare quality and lower medical outcomes. But we also think that the implementation of efficient clinical information systems can affect not only the efficiency but also the quality of healthcare in a positive way. In my research I use administrative data from the Paris Hospitals Public Assistance (AP-HP) to look for associations between hospital productivity indicators and healthcare outcome quality indicators.

Schermafbeelding 2016-06-28 om 19.47.39Xiaowen Cheng, Lund university
My research focuses on the mechanisms causing gastrointestinal(GI) dysfunction in stroke patients. Using animal models, I have found that stroke causes neuronal death in enteric nervous system (ENS), which controls GI functions. Understanding these mechanisms will improve our knowledge and hopefully treatment of GI dysfunctions.

Schermafbeelding 2016-06-28 om 19.48.00Jeffrey Durieux, Leiden University
Our brain is a network of functionally connected brain regions. Functional network integrity may disrupt in the cascade of events leading to dementia before anatomical or cognitive changes become apparent. Increasing sensitivity to identify network alterations therefore may enhance the early detection of dementia. To this end, my research focuses on the development of a new technique for multi-subject fMRI data that clusters subjects based on within-cluster similarities and between-cluster differences in functional networks. With this new technique networks sensitive to early changes may be discovered in a data-driven way.

Schermafbeelding 2016-06-28 om 19.48.19Flavia Esposito, University of Barcelona
My research focuses on validating a type of fixational eye movement, namely vergence, as a biomarker of visual attention to gain knowledge on neurotypical development from early infancy and detect dysfunctions that may lead to mental disease later on.

Schermafbeelding 2016-06-28 om 19.48.30Andrea Farnham, University of Zurich
We have developed a smartphone application to collect a wide range of real-time information on travelers during their trips, including environmental data such as climate conditions, social media location data, and a daily self administered questionnaire on health behavior and accidents/injuries.  To analyze this data, I am using data-driven techniques such as cluster analysis to detect patterns in health behaviors, environmental cues, and symptom development, harnessing “big data” to better describe the health behaviors of travelers abroad.

Schermafbeelding 2016-06-28 om 19.48.42Stefano Frattini, University of Milan
My research focuses on genetic and epigenetic analysis linked to the photoperiod and puberty in goats. The main aim of my project is to highlight epigenetic profiles (miRNA and DNA methylation) responsible for the reproduction cyclicity at the basis of seasonality in goat species.


Schermafbeelding 2016-06-28 om 19.56.46Anais Grangeray, Institute of Cellular and Integrative Neurosciences (INCI)
I am conducting research in the field of neuroscience. More specifically, I study information processing at one particular neuronal connection of the cerebellum, a brain structure essential to maintain balance, learn new motor skills and execute smooth and precise goal-directed movements. Using a combination of electrophysiological recordings, optogenetic and modeling, this study will give insights into the neuronal codes of the cerebellum.

Schermafbeelding 2016-06-28 om 19.56.58Arzu Tugce Guler, Leiden University Medical Center
I am a bioinformatician and my research topic is “intelligent workflows for the analysis of mass spectrometry based proteomics data”. My research primarily focuses on automating data handling and processing. In my project, I incorporate all the parallel and sequential data processing steps by using scientific workflows as an infrastructure. The aimed novel aspect of the project is making the workflows “intelligent” by having convenient data curation, optimal parameter selection and so forth, without need for human intervention.

Schermafbeelding 2016-06-28 om 19.57.09Keita Iyama, Nagasaki University Hospital
Now my research focuses on identifying the novel fusion genes of thyroid cancer. And also I’m engaged in clinical research about prophylaxis of post-traumatic thromboembolism to prevent sudden death during the hospital stay.


Schermafbeelding 2016-06-28 om 19.57.19Sarah Jasim, Imperial College London
My research is focused on a realist evaluation of external peer review programs which aim to improve quality in healthcare. I have evaluated the mechanisms, contexts and outcomes involved; and have also investigated readiness for change and its influence on healthcare services participating in external peer review programs.

Schermafbeelding 2016-06-28 om 19.57.29Liisa Kanninen, University of Helsinki,
The aim of my research is to make better liver cell models for drug testing. To mimic liver-like environment in a dish, I have developed new bioinspired matrices for in vitro hepatic differentiation.

Schermafbeelding 2016-06-28 om 19.57.43Christoph Kurz, MU Munich and Helmholtz Zentrum München
In my research I develop statistical methods for decision making in the medical sciences. My focus is on health economic evaluation to measure effectiveness of new treatments and potentially identify new target groups for personalized medicine.


Schermafbeelding 2016-06-28 om 19.57.55Magda Langiewicz, University Hospital Zurich
My research focuses on understanding the molecular mechanisms behind the accelerated liver regeneration induced by the novel surgical technique, Associating Liver Partition and Portal vein Ligation for Staged hepatectomy (ALPPS). Investigating the accelerators to liver regeneration can give us potential therapeutics, for example to prevent liver failure from small-for-size syndrome (SFSS).

Schermafbeelding 2016-06-28 om 19.58.07Tareq Malas, LUMC
In my research, I focus on using state of the art bioinformatics and biosemantics technologies to identify key genes involved in genetic diseases. This work should reveal important drug targets and progression biomarkers for Polycystic Kidney Disease, which will prove very useful for clinicians and patients involved in this disease.

Schermafbeelding 2016-06-28 om 19.58.18Carla Marin Benito, Universitat de Barcelona
My research focuses on testing the current theory describing particles and their interactions, the Standard Model. For these, I analyze data of the LHCb experiment at the LHC, CERN, Geneva. Mainly, I study the properties of the decays of b hadrons into other particles, among which a photon is present. The ratio at which these decays occur and the properties of the final state are accurately predicted by the Standard Model. Some extensions of this theory give different predictions. So my research consist on confirming or rejecting these models based on experimental results.

Schermafbeelding 2016-06-28 om 19.58.27Jordy Meekes, Utrecht University School of Economics (U.S.E.)
The core interest of my PhD is the interdependence between the housing market and labor market, which gain a renewal in interest because of the recent Great Recession. The Great Recession caused home property values to decline and the unemployment rate to increase. In my research I use administrative data from Statistics Netherlands to examine the behavior of workers who are displaced due to firm bankruptcy. Attention is paid to various features of the housing market, e.g. home location, homeownership and the loan-to-value (LTV) ratio. The displacement effect is examined for workers, who differ in the housing features, on employment, wage, commuting patterns and housing transitions.

Schermafbeelding 2016-06-28 om 20.06.11Olivia Montepaone, Università degli Studi di Milano
I am a PhD student in Classical Scholarship at the Università degli Studi di Milano since November 2014 and my research focuses on the study of the editions of Seneca’s Apocolocyntosis between 1513 and 1808. My project aims to outline the evolution of the classical text under a strictly philological point of view in the course of three centuries, while also isolating the scholars’ most interesting individual contributions. The study of the methodologies and results gained by humanists is accompanied by an analysis of the reception of menippean themes originating for the circulation of Seneca’s satire.

Schermafbeelding 2016-06-28 om 20.06.25Özgür Mutlu, University of Paris
Specific intentions to my research are, develop and the optimization of multi-pin haptic tactile displays. The research work will particularly focus on multi-pin based tactile displays for the visually-impaired. Based on evaluation tests and software simulations on haptics and tactile displays, the aim is to design and prototype new device and to research and develop a new pin design. Furthermore; to acknowledge the user experience, new multi-pin tactile display will be tested with visually impaired subjects.

Schermafbeelding 2016-06-28 om 20.06.38Oona Myllyntaus, University of Helsinki
In my research I explore how public visual artworks are received and experienced within two Nordic upper secondary schools, from the perspectives of environmental psychology and the study of societal challenges of expertise, skills, and competences. Further, I also investigate the implications/consequences for the acquisition and placing of public art in schools, e.g., improved school satisfaction, diversified teaching methods, and produced positive impacts on learning.

Schermafbeelding 2016-06-28 om 20.06.49Mehmet Ali Öztürk, Heidelberg University
As a structural computational biologist I focus on molecular and Brownian dynamics simulations of the nucleosome and linker histone particles to understand the DNA compaction mechanism in eukaryotic organisms. In my research I need to store, transfer and analyze terabytes of simulation data which do not have a standardized format.

Schermafbeelding 2016-06-28 om 20.07.01Eduardo Parisi, University of Milan
he net of administrative agencies revolving around the European Customs Union. The purposes of the research is to detect the strengths and the flaws of the newly implemented European legislation on the matter, which is based on the implementation of e-government methods and on the modernization of the techniques of data collection and sharing.

Schermafbeelding 2016-06-28 om 20.07.10Tra M Pham, University College London
My PhD considers practical statistical methods to deal with missing data in electronic health records. I am currently developing a new multiple imputation procedure, termed ‘population-calibrated inference via weighted multiple imputation’, for missing data in categorical variables, which utilizes their population marginal distributions from external data sources. The method is currently being applied to handle missing ethnicity data in a large UK primary care database, using the ethnicity distribution in the census.

Schermafbeelding 2016-06-28 om 20.07.21Clara Paz E., Universitat de Barcelona
The main focus of my research is to understand the role of cognitive conflicts (implicit personal dilemmas) in psychotherapy for depression. I am trying to determine whether cognitive conflicts resolution is related with change on symptoms and psychological distress.

Schermafbeelding 2016-06-28 om 20.07.32Marion Porte, UPMC
I am investigating the communication between neurons and oligodendroglial cells that produce the protective membrane of axons, the myelin, responsible for a fast electrical neurotransmission in jawed-vertebrates. With a better understanding of these interactions, the long-term purpose of the study is to promote neuronal survival in neurodegenerative diseases such as multiple sclerosis.

Schermafbeelding 2016-06-28 om 20.07.45Rafael Prieto Curiel, University College London
Mathematical modelling of social issues, such as insecurity, migration or diversity, is a useful tool that allows us to measure and detect quantitative and qualitative changes in the behavior of our society but the level of complexity of any social process, such as crime, requires the use of real data. In my research, I am trying to gain insights revealed from the incorporation of real data into the mathematical models of social events.

Schermafbeelding 2016-06-28 om 20.07.57Cong-rui Qiao, Utrecht University
I am a PhD candidate at Utrecht University and work within a project entitled “Receptor Approach to Human Rights”. My research topic is “Institutional and Conceptual Shift in Public Dispute Settlements in China”. My research interest lies in contextual inquiries into legal and human rights development, ranging from theory to field study to application. I have collaborated actively with researchers in multiple disciplines from Asia and Africa.

Schermafbeelding 2016-06-28 om 20.08.08Carin Rehncrona, Lund University
My research concerns the organization of the retail payment market. In recent years the growth of payment methods and providers have risen. I study what determines the retailers’ choice of payments offering to their customers and which payment methods that become prevalent in the market. The data consists of a survey to 300 large retailers in Sweden. Theoretically I use a framework of transaction cost and network theory.

Schermafbeelding 2016-06-28 om 20.08.22Igbal Safarov, Utrecht University
I am Igbal Safarov, originally from Azerbaijan. I have been government officer in Azerbaijan and worked several international studies. Currently, I hold PhD researcher position at Utrecht University, School of Governance. As a PhD researcher, I am committed to investigating Open Government Data (OGD), data-driven innovations and its impact on economic development. My study is targeted to identify and assess potential of open data utilization and develop an open data model based on best practices for developing countries.

Schermafbeelding 2016-06-28 om 20.08.34Feng Shi, Imperial College London
My research focus on using data mining approaches to help inspiring creativity and solutions for designers and engineers. The practice is to build an self-learning knowledge network based on the inherent relationship between knowledge concepts, and we apply network analysis theory into this knowledge network to help retrieve relevant information, make associations, explore new solutions and discover creative knowledge for engineering and design fields.

Schermafbeelding 2016-06-28 om 20.08.47Monica Solbiati, Università degli Studi di Milano
My research focuses on syncope risk stratification; namely, I am comparing different ways to risk stratify and decide disposition of patients presenting with syncope to the emergency department and I am looking for alternative risk stratification strategies. I am also interested in clinical methodology, in particular critical appraisal and systematic reviews.

Schermafbeelding 2016-06-28 om 20.09.02Thársis T. P. Souza, University College London
I am part of the Financial Computing and Analytics Research Group at the University College London (UCL). My research interests lie in the data-driven study of financial systems using statistical methods and computational tools, particularly using big, heterogeneous and alternative data sets. Website:

Schermafbeelding 2016-06-28 om 20.09.15Olivia Viessman. Oxford University
My research area is MR- neuroimaging. The aim of my work is to better understand how vascular properties and physiological fluctuations, such as the cardiac cycle, modulate the MR signal. MRI is non-invasive and is therefore an excellent method to study the cerebrovasculature in humans, which is for example affected in diseases such as stroke.

Schermafbeelding 2016-06-28 om 20.09.26Verena Miriam Wottrich, University of Amsterdam
My research mainly focusses on Internet users’ privacy decisions in mobile apps. Moreover, I am interested in the persuasive effects of new advertising techniques, such as advergames, branded apps, or creative media choices.

Schermafbeelding 2016-06-28 om 20.09.39Dana Yembergenova, University of Geneva
I’m a young specialist in the sphere of educational leadership and management. I was born in Kazakhstan and graduated from Kazakh National University in the Faculty of Oriental Studies. I did my Master’s degree in Cardiff Metropolitan University in the Cardiff School of Education. I have been a recipient of several grants and scholarships, including Kazakh State Scholarship, Erasmus Mundus Arcade scholarship, ICCR scholarship of Indian Government. I worked at Nazarbayev University during 2013-2015 and now I am a PhD student of Educational sciences in the University of Geneva.

My research interests are governance of universities in the developing countries and how recent reforms in the governance of higher education is affecting the capacity of universities to generate knowledge and  enhancing their research productivity.