Éric Labaye, President of École Polytechnique, to preside over the EuroTech Alliance
Since June 1st, 2022, Éric Labaye, President of École Polytechnique and Institut Polytechnique de Paris, presides over the EuroTech Universities Alliance, a strategic partnership of six universities of science and technology in Europe, all dedicated to excellence in research and education – l’X, École polytechnique fédérale de Lausanne (EPFL), Technical University of Munich (TUM), Eindhoven University of Technology (TU/e), Technical University of Denmark (DTU), and Technion - Israel Institute of Technology. Éric Labaye succeeds Martin Vetterli, President of École Polytechnique fédérale de Lausanne (EPFL), in this role for the period 2022-2023.
Alongside its partners in the EuroTech Alliance, École Polytechnique focuses on collaboration to conduct cutting-edge research on a European scale and educate international talents to become responsible leaders in research, entrepreneurship, industry, and society. Upholding strong values, the member universities develop multilateral projects in research areas such as Artificial Intelligence, Health, and Bioengineering, Sustainable Development, Additive Manufacturing, Entrepreneurship, and Innovation to contribute to resolving critical societal challenges.
The EuroTech partners have also set up several programs to foster and facilitate collaboration across Europe on various levels. Examples are the EuroTechPostdoc2 Program, co-funded by the European Commission, which offers seventy Marie Skłodowska-Curie fellowships to high-potential researchers, the European Venture Program for start-up founders, and the EuroTech Visiting Researcher Program, which enables researchers to spend time at the universities to meet with peers and bolster research cooperation.
As EuroTech’s incumbent president, Eric Labaye hosted the Alliance’s summer conference on June 20th, 2022, in Brussel. In the opening speech, he highlighted EuroTech’s vision and missions and subsequently discussed the importance of deep-tech innovation for achieving strategic autonomy for Europe in dialogue with guest speaker Kim Jørgensen, Head of Cabinet of Executive Vice-President Margrethe Vestager from the European Commission.
Several prototypes, innovative methodologies, and technologies developed within the research laboratories of EuroTech's member universities were demonstrated at the event, illustrating the institutions' impressive potential for deep-tech innovation for sustainability and health. The microfluidic droplet-based technique developed by Charles Baroud, Professor at École Polytechnique and Head of the Pasteur-Polytechnique joint group on Physical Microfluidics & Bio-engineering, for instance, enables researchers to enhance cell manipulation and has already led to the foundation of two Biotechnology companies: Stilla Technologies, and Okomera.
Award ceremony of the EuroTeQaThon winners
Together with two additional partners - Tallinn University of Technology (TalTech) and Czech Technical University in Prague (CTU) - the EuroTech partners have initiated a EuroTeQ Engineering university. To train the European engineers of tomorrow, this European University offers professors and students the opportunity to implement and experience innovative teaching and learning formats. As part of this project, a European-wide student competition, the EuroTeQaThon, was organized for student teams from all partner institutions.
"Leave no waste behind" - this was the overall challenge the teams had to tackle with their projects. The best teams presented the solutions they have developed to reduce waste and wastage to the jury during the big final on June 10-12. The winners of the three areas of the competition - "Cities", "Consumption," and "Energy" - were each awarded a trophy during the summer conference in Brussels: The team Asura (TU/e) won the competition in the area "Cities" with their smart system to enhance public lighting; the solution to track, optimize and improve the end-of-life of medical imaging devices developed by the team Advan.ce (TUM) did win in the area "Consumption"; the team Ensa.ai (TalTech) was awarded the trophy in the area "Energy" for their solution for Air ventilation with AI.
Developed as part of the EuroTeQ Engineering University, the new course format during which the students started to work on their projects brings students, faculty, and industry partners together around concrete environmental challenges. The focus on developing sustainable solutions also reflects the importance of sustainability, which Éric Labaye has set as a priority during his presidency of the EuroTech Alliance. Taking the projects set up within EuroTech further, Éric Labaye will focus during his mandate on raising the awareness of the crucial role and responsibility students will play for sustainable development. Other priorities will be the extension of the member universities’ action and the promotion of collaborative and sustainable value creation in technology.