The Prix Schläfli rewards the best Swiss PhDs in natural sciences. It is one of the oldest prizes in Switzerland. Since the first awarding in 1866, 127 young talents in different natural science disciplines have been distinguished.
The prize has the following aims:
- Promote young talents (promotion of young scientists and support of academic excellence) in the different natural science disciplines
- Highlight the importance of young scientists in the Swiss research landscape
Two calls are yet open for young scientific talents in Switzerland.Image: Caspar Klein
Using language models to facilitate chemical syntheses, improve the understanding of large earthquakes, decipher the fundamentals of cell biological processes, produce single photons for protected data transfers – the Swiss Academy of Sciences (SCNAT) is awarding the Prix Schläfli 2022 to the four most important insights of young researchers at Swiss universities. Luca Dal Zilio (Geosciences), Anna-Katharina Pfitzner (Biology), Philippe Schwaller (Chemistry) und Natasha Tomm (Physics) receive the prize for findings in their dissertations. The Prix Schläfli was first awarded as early as 1866.
Her work could help give data transfers more protection against being hacked: during her dissertation, Natasha Tomm (co-)developed a super-efficient source of individual photons.Image: Clemmens Spinnler
Small biological building blocks are her thing: biologist Anna-Katharina Pfitzner has researched a mechanism that is key to many processes in cell biology.Image: Anna-Katharina Pfitzner
Large earthquakes are once-in-a-century events with devastating consequences. Luca Dal Zilio has developed a model that describes the development of such events both temporally and geographically, and which could therefore become important for risk prevention.Image: Victoria Lasheras
How do you use artificial intelligence to simulate chemical processes? Philippe Schwaller has developed a program that has been named the best of its kind by an independent research group.Image: Urs Wäfler
A fortune for the SSNS
Alexander Friedrich Schläfli from Burgdorf died in 1863 in Bagdad. He left his fortune to the Swiss Society for Natural Sciences (SSNS) on condition that the “Society will award an annual prize to any question in physical science – Physical science always comprised the Physics and Natural Sciences (according to proceedings 1917, page 97). (…) The selection and the amount are at the discretion of the named Society.”