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Three Minute Thesis Competition (3MT®)

An 80,000 word thesis would take 9 hours to present.

Their time limit....

3 minutes.

This year, the Academic Writing Center (AWC) of Université Paris-Saclay is hosting a local version of the Three Minute Thesis (3MT®) competition. The competition celebrates the exciting research conducted by doctoral candidates. It supports their capacity to effectively explain their research in three minutes, in a language appropriate to a non-specialist audience.

The Three Minute Thesis (3MT®) is an academic research communication competition developed by The University of Queensland (UQ), Australia.
 

Book your tickets for 3MT® Université Paris-Sacaly Final 2024 on 26th March here

 Finalists of the 2024 3MT® Université Paris-Saclay Competition
 


David Boulesteix
Graduate School: Geosciences, Climate, Environment, and Planets
3MT® Title: "Discovery of a Titan bigger than ever imagined!"
 

I'm a globetrotter who loves to be immersed in new cultures and environments. I swim like a fish and scuba dive to explore underwater worlds. I also enjoy exploring pristine environments with others and working with colleagues in planning the exploration of extraterrestrial worlds. Alongside all these interests, I thoroughly enjoy popularizing science.
 
Why did you decide to do the 3MT®?
I want to give a sense of what the brand-new disciplines of Astrobiology and Astrochemistry are, and maybe by communicating my research with the public, it will inspire young students to dream.

 


Dina Gnichi
Graduate School: Engineering and Systems Sciences
3MT® Title: "Love, lust, corrosion, and the electrical field."
 
I'm Dina, a chemistry student and creator of the website Chemattraction, an online platform that teaches people the fun side of chemistry. In the field of science, my greatest ambition is to bring creativity to each stage of the research process, to increase the number of possibilities, to let new ideas emerge, and to develop uncommon methods to understand phenomena or solve problems.
 
Most recently, I've been interested in energy fields, a challenging but very important domain. As I am concerned for the future, by being a part of this research field, I hope to be part of a solution for a better tomorrow.
 
Why did you decide to do the 3MT®?
I am doing it to promote science in a very unique, fun, and captivating way.


Djihad Amina Djemmah
Graduate School: Engineering and Systems Sciences
3MT® Title: "Turning the ordinary into extraordinary: TiO2 at ultrahigh frequencies"
 
As a young researcher, I'm working on all-dielectric metamaterials for terahertz frequencies, focusing on simulations and some aspects of their fabrication. But I also have interests that go beyond the lab. I have a passion for travel and photography, which I share on my blog and Instagram, and I collect keyrings from across the globe, reflecting my love of diverse cultures.
 
I want to encourage the interaction of scientists with the broader world, and aim to make complex concepts accessible and intriguing to a general audience.
 
Why did you decide to do the 3MT®?
I chose to do the 3MT® because it's a great way to practice explaining my research simply and clearly. It's important to share what we do with people who aren't experts in our field. Also, 3MT® lets me meet other researchers and learn from them, which is really exciting and helpful for my work.


Eka Putra Gusti Ngurah Putu
Graduate School: Chemistry
3MT® Title: "Mapping DNA damage."
 
I come from a small island called Bali in Indonesia, and I'm currently in my third year of a PhD program. I have diverse research interests ranging from biochemistry to nanotechnology. Outside of the lab, I enjoy hiking and playing board games. I also like experimenting with different recipes in the kitchen.
 
Why did you decide to do the 3MT®?
Growing up as a child, I loved sharing what I learned at school with my parents. Sometimes, the topics I shared with them were rather complex or abstract scientific concepts such as atoms, electrons, DNA, etc. I realized that I needed to simplify these ideas and use analogies that my parents could understand. I found joy in explaining what I was studying and making it accessible to everyone, regardless of their background or expertise. So, I decided to do 3MT because it gives me the perfect opportunity to share my research.


Eric Aubinais
Graduate School Mathematics
3MT® Title: "Can we trust AI?"
 
Besides loving maths (obviously), I engage in an intense type of workout known as a "street workout" on a daily basis. I'm known to be hyper-focused in anything I do, so after a full day of thinking and working on my thesis, and then working out, cooking is a great outlet! I love to cook and enjoy preparing a variety of dishes, and most recently I've been doing a lot of Japanese meals!
 
Why did you decide to do the 3MT®?
Improve my speaking skills and the way I speak about complex subjects.

 


Fanny Lehmann
Graduate School: Engineering and Systems Sciences
3MT® Title: "When the earth quakes, AI responds."
 
I am a mathematician doing my PhD with the Laboratoire de Mécanique Paris Saclay at CentraleSupélec and CEA (French Atomic Energy Commission). I have a broad range of interests related to the environment, and so my research applies artificial intelligence (AI) to better estimate earthquake risk. I am not trying to predict when an earthquake will occur, but instead, evaluating the consequences of different earthquake scenarios in earthquake-prone areas. This is crucial to ensure that infrastructures such as power plants or dams do not break down in case of a strong and unexpected earthquake.
 
Why did you decide to do the 3MT®?
I wanted to make my PhD topic understandable and attractive to the general public because it is so frustrating to feel that you lose people when you start talking about the work you love.

 


Jesus Alfredo Godinez Leon
Graduate School: Chemistry
3MT® Title: "Nanoparticles: Tiny heroes against Tuberculosis."
 
I am currently a PhD student in Chemistry at the Institut des Sciences Moléculaires d'Orsay, where I am delving into the world of nanomedicine. I was awarded the Erasmus Mundus Joint Master Scholarship in the SERP+ program and have received the Gabino Barreda medal for obtaining the highest GPA during my undergraduate degree in science at the National Autonomous University of Mexico. I firmly believe in making science accessible to everyone, so I enjoy working in science communication. When I'm not busy looking for a new taco place in Paris, you can find me singing Taylor Swift songs.
 
Why did you decide to do the 3MT®?
I think it is always important to bring science to all people and I think this competition does just that. This competition allows us to be able to explain in a simple way what we PhD students do and I think in a way this brings people closer to knowing more about the science that moves the world.


Jomar Sangalang
Graduate School: Life Sciences and Health
3MT® Title: "Unlocking the genetic puzzle of breast cancer."
 
I’m Jomar, and I’m doing my PhD at Institut Gustave Roussy, where I am analyzing the genetic data of breast cancer patients to discover how they become resistant to anti-cancer treatment and how their cancer metastasize.
 
Previously, I completed my Bachelor of Chemical Engineering degree at the University of Calgary, and my Master of Biomedical Engineering degree at Fachhochschule Aachen. Though I’m from Canada, I have lived in Europe since 2019 and I am loving it so far! I am also an avid foodie, and I blog about my food and travels on Instagram and on my blog at jomamaeats.com

Why did you decide to do the 3MT®?
I decided to do the 3MT® because I want to explain my PhD to family, friends and those around me, in a simple yet concise way. It also helped me to explain my work to the general public, who are the main beneficiary of our research.


Maria Aurely Yedmel
Graduate School: Engineering and Systems Sciences
3MT® Title: "Frozen with natural magic!"
 

I'm a PhD student in my 2nd year at the Université Paris-Saclay, and I'm working at the laboratory FRISE of INRAE to figure out how to keep vapour compression systems, like refridgerators and freezers, functioning in the event of a power cut. I did my bachelor's degree in Chemical Engineering at the University of Wolverhampton and my master's degree in Energy at Université Paris-Saclay.
 
I come from Côte d'Ivoire, and I have always wanted to contribute to the success of our current energy transition, and to find solutions to climate change. I hope that my thesis will enable me to do just that!
 
Why did you decide to do the 3MT®?
During my master's internship, my supervisor, a PhD student, took part in the French version of the competition. I thought it was a brave and fun way of promoting science and research to the general public, and an unforgettable experience! Ever since then, I've wanted to take part in the competition. I also want the general public to know that research is very active in finding solutions to the problems of the energy transistion, and has been so even long before I started my PhD on the topic. So, I was even more enthusiastic about the idea. I also wanted to challenge myself and give the next generation a taste for research. 


Vincent Cavez
Graduate School Computer Science
3MT® Title: "Structure versus freedom."
 
I am completing a Ph.D. in Human-Computer Interaction, analyzing issues that people encounter when working on tablets, and proposing techniques to solve them in several cases. During my bachelor's degree in Mathematics, I developed an interest for coding projects, which fueled my masters' degree in Applied Mathematics and led me where I am today.
 
Beyond academia, I compose electronic and orchestral music. This passion intertwines with my Ph.D., because I chose to focus on music score writing as one of my use cases. I am eager to work on more projects at the intersection of art and science.

Why did you decide to do the 3MT®?
I wanted to work on my public speaking skills and at the same time have the chance to inform people about my thesis work.


Join us on March 26th for the 3MT® Final and show your support for your favorite finalist!
Please book your tickets here

The role of the judging panel

From the moment a competitor speaks, the judges are not only watching the clock to see that each presentation lasts three minutes, but they are also judging each presentation based on two criteria: content and communication.
 
In terms of content, presentations must provide a clear background and significance to the research question, a clear description of the research strategy, a clear explanation of the research results, and a clear description of the conclusions, outcomes, and impact of the research.
 
In terms of communication, the oration of a presentation must be delivered clearly and in a language appropriate for a non-specialist audience. If a competitor uses a PowerPoint slide, that slide must be well-defined and enhance the presentation. Each competitor must also convey enthusiasm for their research, as well as capture and maintain the attention of the audience.
 
So that the judging is fair and balanced, members of the jury come from a wide range of backgrounds.
 

The judging panel of the 2024 3MT® Université Paris-Saclay Final

Antonia Cordignano
Projects Manager, Graduate School of Education
Université Paris-Saclay

Inge Kûhl
I2BC Research Director for Mammalian Mitochondrial Gene Expression and Function  
in Health and Disease (MATRIX)  
Université Paris-Sacaly

Julie McDonald
Student International Mobility Specialist and Lecturer in English Studies & Popular Culture
CentraleSupélec

Mohamed Nawfal Ghazzal
Associate Professor
Transfert d’Electron en Milieu Condensé (TEMiC), Institut de Chimie Physique, CNRS
Université Paris-Saclay

Paul-Henry Cournede
Dean of Research
CentraleSupélec

 

The idea for 3MT® came about at a time when the state of Queensland was suffering severe drought. To conserve water, residents were encouraged to time their showers, and many people had a three minute egg timer fixed to the wall in their bathroom. The Dean of the Graduate School, Emeritus Professor Alan Lawson, put two and two together and the idea for the 3MT competition was born.

Timeline

2008 - The first 3MT® competition was held at UQ  with 160 Higher Degree by Research candidates competing.

2009 - The 3MT® competition was promoted to other Australian and New Zealand universities and enthusiasm for the concept grew.

2010 - A multi- national event was developed, and the Inaugural Trans-Tasman 3MT® competition was held at UQ.

2013 - The first Universitas 21 (U21) 3MT Competition was held with several universities from around the world competing in a virtual  competition.

2016 - The Trans-Tasman 3MT® competition expanded to include universities from South-East and North Asia regions and was renamed the Asia-Pacific 3MT Competition and is hosted annually by UQ.

2020 - 3MT® moves to a temporary virtual format due to COVID-19.

2021 - 3MT® continues to be held around the world in either a virtual or live format (depending on local COVID-19 restrictions)

Now - 3MT® is held in over 900 universities across more than 85 countries worldwide.

Selection competition
December 15, 2023

Training for finalists
Group: January 10 and 24
Individual (1 hour per finalist): February
Dress rehearsal: March 14, 2024

Université Paris-Saclay Final
March 26, 2024
Théâtre Rousseau, Bouygues building, CentraleSupélec
15h-17h

Make sure to mark your calendar for March 26th and come to support your favorite finalist!
This event is open to the public and free of charge. However, tickets are required. Please book your tickets here

Interuniversity Final
June 4, 2024

 Finalists of the 2023 3MT® Competition

Alexandre Duval [2nd Place]
Graduate School of Computer Science
3MT Title: "AI for climate change"

I am devoting my PhD to the mitigation of climate change by accelerating scientific discovery using machine learning. In particular, I design electrocatalysts which improve energetic efficiency for chemical reactions involved in a wide range of human industrial activities, such as the production of hydrogen, cement or fertilizer. Overall, this shall enable to reduce carbon emissions worldwide.

Read more about me here.

Amandine Asselin
Graduate School of Engineering and Systems Sciences
3MT Title: "Chlorides, diffusion and corrosion"

My research work is on chloride diffusion in reinforced concrete structures at the Laboratoire de Mécanique Paris-Saclay (LMPS). When I was a kid, concrete durability was a big issue on my father’s dairy farm, so I wanted to work on issues related to concrete durability. With my current PhD project, I hope to be able to measure the speed of chloride diffusion on experimental samples and then to predict it in real structures.

Read more about me here.

Giann Karlo Aguirre Samboni
Graduate School of Computer Science
3MT Title: "Survive or collapse"

I am a Ph.D. student in Computer Science with a background in engineering and biology.
So far my interests are in developing computing tools and theory to address biological or ecological issues that range from reducing emissions to improving wildlife conservation efforts. Perhaps not surprisingly, I relish outdoor activities like hiking and diving, along with an unending desire to wander national parks worldwide.

Read more about me here.

Manar Amer [1st Place]
Graduate School of Physics
3MT Title: "A new method for producing X-rays"

My research work is related to the optimization of Fabry Perrot cavities for inverse Compton scattering as an X-ray source at Laboratory de Physique des 2 infinitis Irene Joliot-Curie - IJCLab . Previously I did my master's degree at Unversité Paris-Saclay and my bachelor's degree in Physics at An-Najah National University in Nablus, Palestine. I am currently located at the Orsay campus and my current thesis work is the implementation of an experiment called ThomX, short for "Thomson X-ray", where I am using Inverse Compton to produce X-rays that are cheaper and accessible to people while still maintaining a good standard of quality.

Read more about me here.

Mragank Singh
Graduate School of Engineering and Systems Sciences
3MT Title: "Planetary atmosphere and spacecraft entry"

I am a visiting PhD candidate from the University of Queensland, Australia for the six-month research exchange. My research is on a complex and dangerous aspect of space travel: planetary entry. In particular, I focus on the afterbody expanding flows around the shoulder of a space vehicle during Mars and Titan entry. My aim is to understand the heat flux in the radiating flows around such a vehicle, something that is crucial for the design of a safe and efficient spacecraft.

Read more about me here.

Paritosh Sharma
Graduate School of Computer Science
3MT Title: "Sign language synthesis"

My research work focuses on the synthesis of sign languages at Laboratoire Interdisciplinaire des Sciences du Numérique (LISN). I did my master’s degree at Université Grenoble Alpes, France. My curiosity lies in the movement of virtual humans, or avatars, onto which I can apply a language model that will ultimately make sign languages more accessible to everyone.

Read more about me here.

Pearl Stephanie Naa Odarley Lamptey [People Choice]
Graduate School of Public Health
3MT Title: "Beyond bones: The human skeleton as a mirror of life"

I’m a Bioarchaeologist completing a Ph.D. in Medical Anthropology, analyzing human skeletons to reconstruct the lifeways and health of ancient populations to better understand humanity spatiotemporally. During my bachelor's degree in Archaeology and Political Science, I developed an interest in human skeletons which fueled my master’s degree in Archaeology. Along the way, I have also completed certificate courses in Paleopathology and Forensic Archaeology & Anthropology. So, from a spark to passion, I intend to broaden my horizon and share this passion with the world.

Read more about me here.

Romain Lhotte
Graduate School of Computer Science
3MT Title: "Unraveling the puzzling variables of organ transplant success"

I am currently a third year doctoral student in Applied Maths and Computer Science in the medical field of Immunology (2020-2023). I study solid organ transplants at Hôpital Saint-Louis and am a lecturer at CentraleSupelec. I graduated from École Centrale Paris (now CentraleSupélec) in 2017-2020, and hold a Master of Bioinformatics degree from Paris-Sud (now Paris-Saclay) and an International Diploma in Mechanical Engineering from Imperial College London.

Read more about me here.

Salek Ahmed Sajib
Graduate School of BIOSPHERA
3MT Title: "How do organelles talk to each other in plants?"

I am a Ph.D. student at the team MetaboActions of the Institute of Plant Science Paris-Saclay (IPS2). Earlier, I completed my bachelor's and master's degrees in Biotechnology from the University of Rajshahi, Bangladesh, followed by another master's degree in Plant Science at Université Paris-Saclay, France. For my Ph.D. thesis, I am working to identify the role of plastid and mitochondria in seedling development in Arabidopsis thaliana, under dark conditions, to decipher the sensing mechanism of plants.

Read more about me here.

Tanathep Leungtongkum
Graduate School of BIOSPHERA
3MT Title: "Food transport, in a box, with ice packs"

My work focuses on an insulated box, similar to a foam box, that contains ice packs for food product delivery. This device is critical in tropical countries like in Thailand where I was born and educated. I hope that my work will help people use such a device more effectively, leading to less food waste and more food security for future generations.

Read more about me here.

 

The judging panel of the 2023 3MT® Competition

Elodie Fourcade
Head of Administration
Université Paris-Saclay

Julie McDonald
Student International Mobility Specialist and Lecturer in English Studies & Popular Culture
CentraleSupélec

Mohamed Nawfal Ghazzal
Associate Professor
Transfert d’Electron en Milieu Condensé (TEMiC), Institut de Chimie Physique, CNRS
Université Paris-Saclay

Nicolas Mallick
Physics Professor
CentraleSupélec


You can (re)watch last year 3MT® Université Paris-Saclay Final using this link:
https://youtube.com/live/KLTaNfzo0IM?feature=share


Join us on June 4 at the Université Paris-Saclay campus for the Interuniversity 3MT® Final. Stay tuned for more updates and information.

Contact

For more information, contact Melissa Ann Thomas, 3MT Training Course Instructor and Event Coordinator: melissa-ann.thomas@centralesupelec.fr