ESOF (EuroScience Open Forum) 2018 Toulouse

More than 200 sessions featuring speakers from nearly 70 countries as well as topics
going from health to climate change and big data to artificial intelligence: the ESOF 2018 Toulouse programme has just been unveiled and brings the promise of a whole week of high-level multidisciplinary exchanges around the big scientific and social issues at stake for the future.

The EuroScience Open Forum is being organised in France for the first time and will be taking place, for its 8th edition, in Toulouse from 9 to 14 July 2018. Carlos Moedas, European Commissioner for Research, Science and Innovation, Venkatraman Ramakrishnan, Shuji Nakamura and Jean Jouzel (Nobel Prizes), Cédric Villani (Fields Medal), Seema Kumar (Johnson & Johnson), Tom Enders (Airbus), Jean-Yves Le Gall (CNES), JeanPierre Bourguignon (ERC), Michel Kazatchkine (ONU), Flavia Schlegel (UNESCO) but also several ministers or former ministers from different countries, especially European and African, will be present in Toulouse during this week dedicated to science and innovation.

The chosen motto, “Sharing Science: towards new horizons”, embodies the multidisciplinary
dimension of the event, which is the largest in Europe dedicated to science and innovation,
and which enables several thousands of researchers, entrepreneurs, political figures in
research, journalists and scientific communication professionals to get together every two

Plenaries, Keynotes and Special Sessions: Exoplanets, FP9, Immuno-oncology, COP 21
Four “Keynote Conferences” will be delivered each morning, around:

  • “Digital humanities” by Lorna Hughes, Professor at the University of Glasgow
  • “Enhancing reproducible research” by John Ioannidis, Professor of Medicine and
    Research and Health Politics at Stanford University, famous for the publication in PLoS
    Medicine of his paper “Why most Published Research Findings are False”
  • “Our cosmic origins” by Maria Teresa Ruiz, Chilean astronomer and Winner in 2017 of the L’Oreal UNESCO award for Women in Science
  • “The third digital revolution: Fabrication” by Neil Gershenfeld, MIT Professor

The plenary panels will, as round tables, evaluate several topics:

  • the next European Framework Programme for Research and Innovation (FP9:
    Horizon Europe) with Carlos Moedas, European Commissioner for Research, Science
    and Innovation
  • the COP 21, with Jean Jouzel, climatologist, and Laurent Fabius, former president of the Climate Change Conference in Paris
  • the research infrastructures in Europe
  • the future of space exploration
  • Open Science
  • Scientific diplomacy

Special sessions around Immuno-Oncology or the impact of Artificial Intelligence on work will be organised by partners and sponsors such as Johnson & Johnson or the European Group on Ethics.

Hot topics and high-profile panelists
The programme of the event is built on the basis of international calls for contributions, and is articulated around three key aspects: “Science”, “Science to Business”, “Careers”. More than 200 sessions will address diverse topics, mirroring the current scientific, political and social events: biobanks, synthetic biology, digital technologies for aging well, big data and the future of democracy, plastic pollution in the ocean, biofuels, tomorrow’s smart cities, the impact of Brexit on European science, the women that are going to change the world of research.

Nearly a quarter of sessions will concern health, followed by topics around the sustainable city, climate change, and the digital world. Also widely featured will be ethics, gender issues, the connections between science, business and society, the humanities and social sciences as well as frontier research.

Nearly 1000 speakers from more than 70 countries will take part in ESOF, including Mark Ferguson, Director of the Science Foundation Ireland, Pierre Meulien, Director of the Innovative Medicine Initiative, Venkatraman Ramakrishnan, Nobel Prize in Chemistry 2009, Maria Leptin, Director of the European Molecular Biology Organization (EMBO), Nick Clegg, Former Deputy Prime Minister of the United Kingdom, Peter Gluckman, scientific advisor for the Prime Minister of New Zealand.

The complete programme can be viewed online on the website

B2B networking, young researchers and general public
ESOF 2018 will feature a 2500 sq. exhibition space, which will be welcoming a programme of
short conferences and attractive elevator pitches as well as B2B meetings. For the first
time, poster sessions will also be organised, as to highlight young, promising researchers and PhD students.

ESOF 2018, along the lines of its motto “Sharing Science”, is also strongly committed to international openness, especially towards the developing countries and Africa, and towards the youth, with a dedicated programme: “ESOF for the Youth” or YESOF, in partnership with the schools of the Toulouse region.

The Science in the City festival, dedicated to the general audience, local and tourists alike, will feature more than 100 events in roughly fifty different locations: “Arbre à palabres” (“talking tree”) in the Botanical Gardens, “Scientific Treasure Hunt” in the city, but also performances, conferences and workshops in laboratories, art museums, theaters and cinemas. “This exciting program is the result of collegial work. It is a reflection of the major scientific issues of today and tomorrow and perfectly embodies the values of ESOF: the dialogue around science, interdisciplinarity and international” says Anne Cambon-Thomsen, ESOF 2018 Champion.

Press contact
Alexandra Foissac
ESOF Toulouse 2018 PR Officer
+33 (0)5 61 009119
About ESOF 2018

The EuroScience Open Forum (ESOF) is a two-yearly European event. It will be taking place in Toulouse from 9 to 14 July 2018: as such, Toulouse earns the title of “European City of Science”.

ESOF 2018’s motto is “Sharing Science: towards new horizons”, and is built around a professional forum, an exhibition including B2B meetings, and a festival dedicated to the general public called “Science in the city”. This biennial gathering is the largest in Europe dedicated to science and innovation. It is relying on a crosscutting approach and on multidisciplinarity, which leads 4000 to 5000 people from academia, industry and politics to gather every two years in a European city. ESOF 2018 is brought to Toulouse by the European
association EuroScience and the Université FédéraleToulouse Midi-Pyrénées.

About EuroScience
EuroScience is a European non-profit grassroots association based in Strasbourg and open to researchers, teachers, students, decision-makers, businesses, public institutions and more broadly, to any citizen keen on science, innovation and their relationship to society. EuroScience seeks to represent the voice of European researchers beyond disciplines and frontiers. Its aims are to: – get decision-makers and citizens engaged for building a stronger Europe thanks to science, – work on the researchers’ careers, rights and responsibilities issues as well as the key stakes of scientific policy-making, – take knowledge forward, and approach the transdisciplinary challenges in order to contribute to prosperity and global development.

About the Université Fédérale Toulouse Midi-Pyrénées
The Université Fédérale Toulouse Midi-Pyrénées, or UFTMP, is a structure regrouping the main higher education and research institutions in Toulouse and its region (4 universities, 19 engineering schools or specialized schools and 7 research organisms.) It works towards promoting the university site in its entirety. The aim is to achieve the best international level in terms of science and academia, as well as to foster good hosting and living conditions for its students and researchers, whether French natives or foreigners. Along with its members, the Université Fédérale focuses its expertise on cross-disciplinary missions covering all areas of university life: training, international relations, research and PhD, valorisation, student life, documentary cooperation, dissemination of scientific and technical culture, computing and housing.

About Susie Murph

Susie Murph is a Communications Specialist at CosmoQuest. She produces the Astronomy Cast, the Weekly Space Hangout and Daily Space.

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