Young researchers trying to make the world greener

New materials and applications of wood and fibres for the forest industry were presented at the Young Researchers’ Challenge 2016.

The Marcus Wallenberg Prize Selection Committee had accepted a total of 37 post doctors and PhD students from different universities and research institutes in Canada, Finland and Sweden, to take part at the 2016 Marcus Wallenberg Prize Event and the Global Wood Science Days 10 – 13 October in Stockholm, Sweden. Many of their abstracts revealed an ambition to find new materials and applications of wood and fibres for the forest industry and society as a whole.

Dong Yang, Ph D candidate at McMaster University in Montreal, was one of the 37 young researchers accepted.

– It was a privilege to be selected as a part of the event, Dong Yang says.

Seminar with the laureates

The 2016 Marcus Wallenberg Prize was awarded to professor Alexander Katsevich and dr Federico Giudiceandrea for the development of a CT scanner for whole tree logs.

The young scientists were invited to the prize ceremony and had the opportunity to present their own research in a poster session at a symposium in honour of the laureates. They also met and talked to the prize winners in a seminar, together with other senior researchers and business representatives.

– The poster session helped us to connect with the professionals in academia and industry. I also made new friends all over the world. Surprisingly I met some of them again in Montreal this year – what a small world, Dong Yang says.

Dong Yang characterizes Stockholm as one of the global innovation hubs in the area of wood science and The Marcus Wallenberg Prize as one of the most important events of renewable material research all over the world.

– Being part of this particular experience I felt the enthusiasm and dynamics in this research area. It is really great to see so many talented scientists working together to make the world greener and nicer. I am proud to be a part of this community, Dong Yang says.

Linn Berglund, Ph D candidate at Luleå University of Technology, thinks the event gave her a chance to partake in interesting presentations as well as discussions with the presenters.

– It was a great opportunity to network with researchers from rather different areas and the common interest of wood as a source of material.

She stills benefits from the event in terms of an extended network and input to her own research work.

– The presentation pitch and the following feedback was a good practice for improvement as well as awareness of different presentation approaches, she says.

The Marcus Wallenberg Young Researchers’ Program is sponsored by Erik Johan Ljungbergs utbildningsfond, supporting education within forestry and the forest products industry in Sweden.