Grace Shephard selected for Lindau Nobel Laureate Meeting
16 March 2012
Grace Shephard, a PhD student in the School of Geosciences, has been selected from a very competitive field of international applicants to attend the Lindau Nobel Laureate Meetings in Germany to be held 1-6 July 2012.
She will join early career research scientists from around the world to hear presentations from and join discussion sessions with twenty five Nobel Laureates, with the meeting sessions focusing on physics. Professor Brian Schmidt, the Australian astronomer who won the Nobel Prize for Physics in 2011, will present the first lecture on the first day of the meeting.
The Lindau Nobel Laureate Meetings have been run every year since 1951, and bring scientists under the age of 35 together with Nobel Laureates to exchange ideas, discuss projects and build international networks.
Grace was selected along with 550 young scientists from around the world from over 20 000 nominations made by more than sixty countries. The top 550 scientists were chosen for their scientific achievements, research records and merits.
"I feel very fortunate to have been selected. I am most keen to attend the lectures from the Nobel Laureates and am particularly looking forward to the first lecture of the meeting, given by Professor Brian Schmidt," said Grace.
"As a current student and young scientist, it is a privilege to be able to attend such an internationally prestigious event, especially during the European summer!"
The Lindau Nobel Laureate Meetings rotate through the three science disciplines rewarded by the Nobel Prizes: physiology or medicine, physics, and chemistry. Every five years, the meetings take on all three disciplines in the one tri-disciplinary meeting.
"The 2012 meeting theme is physics, and my research in geophysics requires an understanding of physical processes including mantle rheology, viscosity and mineral phase transitions. I am modeling both surface and deep Earth processes over millions of years, including mantle convection, plate tectonics and surface uplift and subsidence," explained Grace.
"This global-scale research uses physics to model long-wavelength dynamic topography signals."
In the third year of her PhD supervised by Professor Dietmar Müller, within the University of Sydney's EarthByte Group, Grace was nominated by Professor Müller for the honour. The Australian Academy of Science processed all the Australian nominations and sent them onto the Council for the Lindau Nobel Laureate Meetings, who select participants and organise the event.
"Falling in the last year of my PhD, and under the theme of physics, this meeting will provide a unique and enriching platform to exchange ideas with fellow students and academics, both in my field of geophysics and in the wider scientific disciplines."
The week in Germany in July will not be Grace's first trip to the country, as she spent three months during the first year of her PhD working at the University of Munich with the geodynamics group lead by Professor Hans-Peter Bunge.
In addition to her PhD, Grace also completed her Bachelor of Advanced Science with First Class Honours in Geophysics at the University of Sydney and won the University Medal for her Honours research.
In total, seven Australian young scientists have been chosen to attend the Lindau Nobel Laureate Meetings in 2012, with Grace the only scientist selected from NSW. She will meet the other six Australians selected during the Science at the Shine Dome event to be held 2-4 May in Canberra by the Australian Academy of Science.
Read more about the Lindau Nobel Laureate Meetings at: www.new.lindau-nobel.de.axprod.net/WebHome.AxCMS
Contact: Katynna Gill
Phone: 02 9351 6997