Keynote Speakers

Here you can find a small biosketch of the confirmed Keynote Speakers

Gaetano Assanto, Università degli Studi di Roma Tre, Italy

Prof. Gaetano Assanto (PhD 1987) is head of NooEL - the Nonlinear Optics and OptoElectronics Lab established at the University Roma Tre (Italy), where he teaches Optoelectronics since 1992. He is an OSA and IEEE Fellow, expert in nonlinear (quadratic, cubic) guided-wave optics and photonics, pioneer of reorientational optical solitons in liquid crystals

Etiennne Brasselet, Laboratoire Ondes et Matière d’Aquitaine, France

Morten Andreas Geday, Universidad Politécnica de Madrid, Spain

Prof. Geday has studied LC devices that generates optical vortices since 2012, and especially since 2017, where the UPM group published their first fully in house developed spiral phase plate with its corresponding driver. In 2020 the group published a novel kind of tunable vortex based lenses, that emulates Fresnel lenses, with exceptional fill factor and simplicity in manufacture. Prof. Geday is currently coordinating one national and one European project centered on the maturing the technology of this lens technology.

Emmanuelle Lacaze, Sorbonne Universitè, UPMC - Institut des Nanosciences de Paris, France

Teresa Lopez-Leon, CNRS Researcher, Equality Officer at École Supérieure de Physique et de Chimie Industrielles de la Ville de Paris (ESPCI Paris), France

Richard Mandle, University of Leeds, UK 

Dr. Richard Mandle holds a UK Research and Innovation Future Leaders Fellowship as part of a joint appointment between the school of Chemistry and the school of Physics and Astronomy at the University of Leeds. Dr. Mandle has over 80 peer reviewed papers (h-index 32), seven book chapters, is a founder member of a spin-out company from the University of Leeds, and serves on the editorial board of several leading journals. His current research interests include synthesis and characterisation of fluid ferroelectrics, precision flow-synthesis of small-molecules and polymers, algorithmic molecular design and evaluation, and sustainable materials.

Miha Ravnik, University of Ljubljana, Slovenia

Prof. Miha Ravnik is Head of the Group for physics of soft and partially ordered matter and Vice-dean at the Faculty of Mathematics and Physics, University of Ljubljana, and research councillor at J. Stefan Institute, Ljubljana, Slovenia.  His expertise is in modeling and theory of soft matter systems, in particular liquid crystals, liquid crystal colloids, active fluids, effects of external fields, protein biophysics, and optics and photonics  of complex optically-anisotropic fluids. Ravnik defended his PhD in physics in 2009 in Ljubljana, Slovenia, and from 2009-12, worked as a post-doctoral Marie Curie Fellow at the University of Oxford.  His bibliography includes >95 research papers, with >5000 citations.

Albert P.H.J. Schenning, Eindhoven University of Technology, Noord-Brabant, NL 

Albert Schenning studied chemistry at Radboud University Nijmegen, where he obtained his master's degree in 1992 and his doctorate in 1996. His PhD thesis on supramolecular architectures based on porphyrin and receptor molecules was supervised by Dr. Martin Feiters and Prof. Roeland Nolte. Between June and December 1996, he was a post-doctoral fellow in the group of Prof. Bert Meijer at Eindhoven University of Technology (TU/e), working on dendrimers. In 1997, he investigated pi-conjugated oligomers and polymers based on triacetylenes with Prof. François Diederich at the ETH in Zurich. In 2003 he was appointed assistant professor, in 2005 associate professor and in 2014 full professor of Stimuli-responsive Functional Materials and Devices at TU/e. He leads the research group (SFD) which centers on stimuli-responsive functional materials and devices. This entails the development of polymer materials with new responsive functionalities and integrating them into devices to meet industrial and societal challenges in the fields of sustainable energy, healthcare & personal comfort.

Jacek Szczytko, University of Warsaw, Poland

Prof. Jacek Szczytko [Yatzek Shtchitko] works at the Faculty of Physics, University of Warsaw, Poland. After his PhD on spintronics in 2001 he went for a postdoctoral research at EPFL in Switzerland, where he was working on ultrafast spectroscopy of excitons. At 2005 he returned to the University of Warsaw. In 2010, together with Barbara Piętka, he founded the Polariton Laboratory at the Faculty of Physics. In 2016 he established collaboration with the Military University of Technology in Warsaw on birefringent liquid crystal microcavities. Prof. Jacek Szczytko is the founder and head of Nanoengineering studies at the Faculty of Physics. He is the leader of European Commission H2020 project TopoLight for “Soft matter platform for optical devices via engineering of non-linear topological states of light”.

Elisabeta Ildyko Szerb, “Coriolan Dragulescu” Institute of Chemistry, Romanian Academy

Dr. habil. Elisabeta-Ildyko SZERB is Senior Researcher (CS I) at the “Coriolan Drăgulescu” Institute of Chemistry, Romanian Academy, Head of Program 4: Inorganic and hybrid compounds with relevance in nanostructured materials science. Precursors for advanced materials, since January 2017. Her background is in the design, synthesis and structural characterization of both organic and inorganic low- and high-molecular weight compounds with targeted properties. Since her PhD thesis, she discovered the wonderful world of metallomesogens (MMs), being involved in the synthesis and characterisation of MMs based on d-block metal complexes designed for applications in electrooptics and/or biomedical fields.

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