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TWAS Newsletter
The Academy's quarterly magazine. Download PDF files of individual…

47 new Fellows elected to TWAS

47 new Fellows elected to TWAS

The new class of Fellows includes a Nobel laureate, and 40% of the new class are women

The Academy elected 47 new TWAS Fellows today. Among them is one Nobel laureate, physicist Giorgio Parisi from Italy, who received the Nobel Prize in Physics in 2021. This addition elevates the count of Nobel laureates within the Academy's membership to 13. Also, 19 new members are women — which amounts to 40% of the new cohort.

Three newly elected Fellows hail from science- and technology-lagging countries that have been underrepresented in the TWAS membership: Bolivia, Nepal and Yemen, the latter two being least developed countries. Furthermore, five additional Fellows are from other science- and technology-lagging countries: two from Bangladesh, and one each from Cameroon, Kenya, and Sri Lanka.

Three more new Fellows are from other countries in the global South underrepresented in TWAS: two from Morocco, and one from Jamaica. The first Fellow from Ukraine was elected, thus expanding even further the global presence of the Academy.

The remaining 35 new Fellows originate from Argentina (1); Australia (1); Brazil (7); China (7); Taiwan, China (1); India (5); the Islamic Republic of Iran (1); Italy (1); Malaysia (4); Mexico (1); Pakistan (2); South Africa (2); the United Kingdom (1); and the United States (1).

The election of the new Fellows will be effective starting on 1 January 2024, bringing the total TWAS membership to over 1,400.

01. Agriculture, Nutrition & Food Systems Sciences

EKESI, Sunday (Kenya): (M). Head, Integrated Sciences and Capacity Building, International Centre of Insect Physiology and Ecology, Kenya. The nominee is a globally recognised entomologist and has been leading a continent-wide initiative to manage fruit flies in Africa. He has successfully developed pre- and post-harvest management methods for fruit fly control benefitting more than 100 million households across Africa. He has developed several biopesticides for use in integrated pest management to minimise the use of synthetic pesticides in agriculture. Ekesi has contributed to generating ground-breaking knowledge and technologies on the use of insects as alternative sources of protein for food and feed enabling over 300 small, medium, and large-scale feed producers to integrate insect-based protein into feed production. Ekesi has published more than 270 peer reviewed articles in scientific journals, mentored 26 PhD students and was bestowed the 2024 TWAS Award in Agricultural Sciences (shared). He is a Fellow of the Entomological Society of America; Royal Entomological Society, United Kingdom; African Academy of Sciences; and is  a member of several advisory boards.

FONTES, Elizabeth P. B. (Brazil): (F). Full Professor, Universidade Federal de Viçosa (UFV), Brazil. The nominee pioneered uncovering plant antiviral immunity mechanisms and cell-death signaling pathways, leading to biotechnological achievements toward resistance to begomoviruses and drought in crops. She also unraveled transport pathways for the intracellular movement of begomoviruses. She is a member of the editorial board of Plant Physiology (Oxford Academic) and Frontiers in Biotechnology. Member of the National Order of Scientific Merit by the Brazilian presidency since 2018 and of the Brazilian Academy of Science since 2008, she has received several scientific recognition awards, among which: CAPES Thesis Advising Award 2021; Marcos Luiz dos Mares Guia Award, by the Secretary of Science and Technology of Minas Gerais, Brazil (2016); Nano Cell Institute Award; II Scientists and Entrepreneur of the Year 2017; Fundação Arthur Bernardes Award 2013 for research achievement; Peter H. Rolfs Medal for research merit 2009 by UFV. She is Senior Fellow 1A of the Brazilian National Council for Scientific and Technological Development.

HASANUZZAMAN, Mirza (Bangladesh): (M). Professor, Sher-e-Bangla Agricultural University, Bangladesh. The nominee is one of the highly cited researchers by Clarivate Analytics. His publications were cited over 24,500 times as per Google Scholar with an h-index of 79. He significantly contributed to elucidating the mechanisms of induction of antioxidant defense systems in plants using various biostimulants to abiotic stresses. Understanding these molecular mechanisms has helped to enhance crop productivity under the changing climate. He is a recipient of several national and international awards and medals, including the TWAS Prize for Young Scientists in Developing Countries awarded by the Bangladesh Academy of Sciences, and the University Grants Commission Gold Medal, Bangladesh. Hasanuzzaman is an elected Fellow of the Bangladesh Academy of Sciences, The Linnean Society of London, the Royal Society of Biology, and the International Society of Environmental Botanists. He is an Editor of several reputed international journals and books and a recipient of the Publons Peer Review Award in 2017, 2018 and 2019.

SIDDIQUE, Kadambot (Australia): (M). Hackett Professor of Agriculture Chair and Director, Institute of Agriculture, The University of Western Australia, Australia. The nominee’s major contribution to agriculture has been crop yield improvements in grain legumes and wheat in the fields of crop physiology, production agronomy, germplasm development and breeding. Siddique maintains contact with end-users and always involves industry and farmer groups in the first steps of developing his research projects. His research is relevant to the farming community and aims to solve real problems through meticulous scientific research methodology and collaboration. His research is directly relevant to international researchers, producers and communities as illustrated by his numerous international linkages. He is a highly cited researcher in the field of agricultural science and plant and animal sciences. He was designated as special ambassador for the International Year of Pulses by the Food and Agriculture Organization of the United Nations. Foreign Fellow of the Pakistan Academy of Sciences; Fellow of the African Academy of Sciences; Foreign Fellow of the Indian National Academy of Agricultural Sciences; Fellow of the Agriculture Institute of Australia; Fellow of the Australian Academy of Technological Sciences and Engineering, he has received Highly Cited Researcher recognition twice; West Australian Indian of the Year; Friendship Award by Chinese Central Government; Excellence Award by World Malayalee Council; Member of the Order of Australia; gold medal and citation by the former president of India, among others.

SINGHAL, Rekha S. (India): (F). Professor of Food Technology, Institute of Chemical Technology, Mumbai, India. The nominee’s work is an amalgamation of basic and applied sciences which encompasses (1) food chemistry (microbial polysaccharides, newer wall materials, and newer technologies for microencapsulation of sensitive food), (2) chemistry and technology of traditional Indian foods (fortification of foods with iron, vitamins B12 and D, masking of bitterness in foods), (3) biological sciences (submerged and solid-state fermentation and downstream processing of nutraceuticals, antibiotics, and immunomodulatory agents, and dabbling in human genetics), (4) engineering sciences (separations using supercritical carbon dioxide and chromatography), all centered around the theme of biomolecules of food and pharmaceutical interest. The use of hydrocolloids for the reduction of oil content in fried foods has been accepted by both regulatory bodies and the industry. Member of the Indian National Science Academy, she has received the Malaviya Memorial Award, Indian Speciality Chemicals Manufacturers Association Award, and Prof. M.M. Sharma Award, among others.

02. Biological Sciences

MOSYAKIN, Sergei (Ukraine): (M). Director, M.G. Kholodny Institute of Botany, National Academy of Sciences of Ukraine. Using the rich resources of the Kholody Institute in Kyiv, the nominee has provided evolutionary insight for many groups of plants throughout the world. He has always shared generously the information he has assembled, both nationally and internationally. Mosyakin has throughout his career forged global connections, assembling correspondents in every continent. He has been a major contributor to the floras of China and of North America, developing original insights and proving a collaborative and insightful contact to many dozens of botanists internationally. Member of the National Academy of Sciences of Ukraine, he has received several awards from it for professional achievement; Petro Mohyla (2008) and Sofya Rosova (2005) medals from the Ministry of Education and Science of Ukraine for educational achievements; O.V. Fomin medal for scientific achievements, among others.

OKOH, Anthony Ifeanyin (South Africa): (M). Professor and Director, Microbial Water Quality Monitoring Centre, South African Medical Research Council; and Applied and Environmental Microbiology Research Group, Department of Biochemistry and Microbiology, University of Fort Hare, Alice, Eastern Cape, South Africa. The nominee holds a PhD in Microbiology and 11 other diplomas and certificates in various specializations in the biotechnology/molecular biology domain. His research interests is in the area of Applied and Environmental Microbiology. He has published over 450 journal articles and graduated 52 PhD and 69 Master’s degree students. He has an h-index of 62 and citation of over 17,000. He is a Fellow of seven national and international academies and societies including the Royal Society of Biology, African Academy of Sciences, Water Institute of Southern Africa, Academy of Science of South Africa and The Nigerian Academy of Sciences. He has been director of a research centre of excellence at the University of Fort Hare, South Africa since 2014. He has received the Achievers Award conferred by the Biotechnology Society of Nigeria, and University of Fort Hare Vice-Chancellor’s Senior Researcher Medal, among others.

SEKARAN, Shamala Devi (Malaysia): (F). Professor, University of Malaya, Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia. The nominee's main research interest is in diagnostics, antivirals and pathogenesis of dengue infections. She was the director of the World Health Organization Collaborating Centre involved in developing and evaluating dengue kits with TDR (Special Programme for Research and Training in Tropical Diseases) worldwide, out of which multiple papers have been published, one of them in Nature Reviews Microbiology. She was instrumental in developing dengue assays and has commercialized three molecular assays. She was the chief science officer of a private Malaysian research and development company developing broad spectrum oral antimicrobial and anticancer drugs. She has been appointed as a panel member for the evaluations of grants from the Ministry of Science and Innovations Malaysia. Fellow of the Academy of Sciences Malaysia, she has received the Malaysian Top Research Scientist and has been a member of the Academy’s Council. Currently she serves on the finance committee of the Academy and also as a senate and council member of UCSI University, Malaysia.

TOLEDO, Marisol (Bolivia): (F). Chief of Laboratories, Biology Department, Universidad Autónoma Gabriel René Moreno, Bolivia. The nominee contributed with over 60 international scientific articles, books, and book chapters. Bolivia depends on its natural ecosystems, hence the great importance of her practical research: her pioneering on ethnobotany, a mostly neglected topic on secondary forests, and research insights on forest ecology at national level, to name a few. In addition, she was editor-in-chief of the Bolivian Botanical Society´s journal, and is currently editor-in-chief of the Kempffiana journal. Academic challenges in Bolivia for science, research and education are great due to the species and ecosystem diversity, the need for natural resource management and corresponding knowledge backlog. Especially noteworthy in Toledo’s trajectory: striving at the frontiers of research and divulgation, as well as contributing to human resource training, assisting under- and postgraduates, and providing courses for indigenous people. Finally, her effort to strengthen research institutions and networks is relevant. Member of the Academy of Sciences of Bolivia, she has received Outstanding Researcher Award, Scientific Merit Prof. Noel Kempff Mercado Award, and Outstanding Work and Contribution to Scientific Research Award from Universidad Autónoma Gabriel René Moreno, among others.

YAN, Xiyun (China): (F). Principal investigator, Institute of Biophysics, Chinese Academy of Sciences, Beijing, China. The nominee discovered the intrinsic enzyme-like properties of inorganic nanomaterials and proposed the concept of nanozymes. She established the method for studying nanozymes and developed the first commercial nanozyme products for detecting Ebola, COVID-19 and tumors. Following her pioneering work, more than 12,000 papers have been published by 400 laboratories across 31 countries describing over 900 nanozymes utilized in medicine, agriculture and environmental protection. This exciting new interdisciplinary field bridges nanomaterials, enzymology and medicine. Yan is a world-renowned expert in tumor biology due to her contributions in discovering two novel tumor targets, CD146 and TfR1. She developed targeted therapy for tumors including melanoma, glioma, and pancreatic cancer, and phase I clinical trials are scheduled for the end of 2022. Member of the Chinese Academy of Sciences, she has received the Ho Leung Ho Lee Science and Technology Progress Award, Tan Jiazhen Life Science Achievement Award and the Atlas Award by Elsevier, among others.

03. Medical & Health Sciences

ABDUL-GHANI, Rashad (Yemen): (M). Department of Medical Parasitology, Faculty of Medicine and Health Sciences, Sana'a University, Yemen. The nominee has been a member of the World Health Organization (WHO)'s Strategic Advisory Group of Experts on In Vitro Diagnostics (SAGE/IVD) since August 2018. He is also a member of WHO's TDR Global, a community of experts who have been working with the Special Programme for Research and Training in Tropical Diseases, and serves as a member of the International Society for Infectious Diseases for the Eastern Mediterranean, and Uniting to Combat Neglected Tropical Diseases. He serves as a member of the editorial boards of several peer-reviewed journals, including Acta Tropica (Elsevier), BMC Infectious Diseases (BioMed Central), and the International Journal of Infectious Diseases (International Society for Infectious Diseases). Rashad's research efforts paid off when he won the TDR Global Career Impact Contest 2021, organized by TDR Global and Social Entrepreneurship to Spur Health for TDR-supported researchers tackling infectious diseases of poverty. He has received the Award for Scientific Research of the University of Science and Technology, Sana’a,Yemen; and the Medal of Excellence from the Ministry of Higher Education and Scientific Research and the Cultural Attaché of the Embassy of Yemen in Cairo, among others.

BANU, Sayera (Bangladesh): (F). Senior Scientist and Head, Programme on Emerging Infections, Infectious Diseases Division, icddr,b, Bangladesh. Since 1999, the nominee has conducted extensive studies on tuberculosis (TB). In 2001, she established the state-of-the-art BSL2+ Mycobacteriology Laboratory at icddr,b, with cutting-edge studies that merge epidemiology, diagnostics, transmission, immunology and genomics of TB. She innovated techniques to isolate the TB-causing organism (Mycobacterium tuberculosis) and to contain antimicrobial resistance. Her ground-breaking research on TB and its effective translation into policy and practice helped in improving TB management and reducing disease burden. She is a member of several national committees such as the National TB Technical Committee, National Tuberculosis Control Programme; Research Committee, PPM Working Group, and TB Working Group. She has received the TWAS-Fayzah M. Al-Kharafi Award (2022) and BAS Sultan Ahmed Chowdhury Science and Technology Gold Medal Award (2019).

CHANDAK, Giriraj Ratan (India): (M). Chief Scientist and Group Leader, CSIR-Centre for Cellular and Molecular Biology, India. The nominee has made outstanding contributions in understanding the genetic basis and gene-nutrient interaction in complex human genetic disorders. He identified two novel genes and showed a different spectrum of mutations in tropical calcific pancreatitis, establishing its genetic basis. Additionally, he provided evidence of novel genetic factors in noncommunicable diseases like type 2 diabetes (T2D) and demonstrated epigenetic regulation of T2D candidate-genes through environmental factors including micronutrients in Indians. His recent work establishes a causal role of vitamin B12-mediated epigenomic regulation in developmental programming of obesity/insulin resistance which predicts future susceptibility to metabolic syndrome. His efforts in creating awareness about preventing monogenic genetic disorders by prenatal diagnosis and genetic counselling using cost-effective protocols are exemplary, especially in the Indian context. Member of the three Indian science academies, he has received Dr. J.S. Bajaj Oration Award, Prof. V.P. Sharma Memorial Lecture Award, and Sun Pharma Science Foundation Research Award in the field of Clinical Research, among others.

JIA, Weiping (China): (F). Director, Shanghai Diabetes Institute, Shanghai Sixth People’s Hospital, China. The nominee has contributed to the research on prediction and prognosis, monitoring and care on diabetes and its related metabolic disorders. She has revealed the prevalence of diabetes and its complications in China, developed an integrated care model with digital medicine on diabetes, innovated AI-based screening systems on diabetic retinopathy, identified susceptible genes of diabetes in Chinese people, established reference values of continuous glucose monitoring, and discovered the close associations of FGF21 with non-alcoholic fatty liver disease in human. Member of the Chinese Academy of Engineering, she has received the Xiaoren Pan Distinguished Research Award for Epidemiology of Diabetes in Asia, the Ho Leung Ho Lee Prize for Science and Technology, and the National Science and Technology Progress Award, among others.

LOPES-CENDES, Iscia (Brazil): (F). Professor of Medical Genetics and Genomic Medicine, University of Campinas, Brazil. The nominee identified genes/loci for neurological disorders and advanced the use of molecular biomarkers in medicine. She also unraveled epilepsy mechanisms and contributed to implementing precision medicine in Brazil. Member of the Brazilian Academy of Sciences and the Academy of Sciences of São Paulo State, she has received the Academic Recognition Award Zeferino Vaz from the University of Campinas (2006 and 2020), and Scientist Entrepreneur of the Year Award by the Nanocell Institute (2016). She is a researcher at the National Research Council of the Ministry of Science and Technology, Brazil, level 1A (maximum level: 2010–2027).

TORIMIRO, Judith Ndongo Embola (Cameroon): (F). Professor, University of Yaoundé 1, Cameroon. The nominee’s scientific contributions include molecular epidemiology of retroviruses (HIV-1, HTLV and simian retroviruses) and hepatitis viruses (HBV, HCV, HDV) through which her team reported rare variants such as HTLV III and HTLV IV, STLV and SFV in humans, HBV subtype C, and HCV genotype 5. She has also contributed to the creation of sequence databases of HIV-1, HBV, HCV and HLA-A and HLA-C, and KIR genotypes among individuals in Cameroon. From these databases in silico studies of genotypic resistance for HIV-1, HBV and HCV were carried out showing moderate levels of resistance associated mutations in polymerase region of HIV-1 and of HBV (to lamivudine) and less than 1% rate of HCV polymerase (to sofosbuvir). Creation and upgrading of 4 scientific research centres in Cameroon, and promotion of the Prevention of Mother to Child Transmissions of HBV initiative through a multidisciplinary network in Central Africa. Member of the Cameroon Academy of Sciences, she has received several training fellowships and the Award of Excellence for Women’s Health by the Commonwealth Secretariat, London, United Kingdom.

WONKAM, Ambroise (South Africa): (M). Professor and Director, Genetic Medicine of African Population (GeneMAP), University of Cape Town, South Africa. The nominee is a leading figure in medical genetics research and practice in Africa authoring an excess of 200 publication in peer reviewed journals and books. His contribution covers research in sickle cell disease, hearing loss and ethics. Recently he authored several publications on equity in science publishing and the importance of making the voice of scientists in the South heard. He is the current president of the African Society of Human Genetics. Member of the South African Academy of Sciences, he has received the Alan Pifer Award, the Scientific Merit Gold Award for Outstanding Scientific Contributions to Health Research by the South African Medical Research Council, among others.

04. Chemical Sciences

ABD RAHMAN, Noorsaadah (Malaysia): (F). Professor, University of Malaya, Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia. The nominee's main research interest is in drug discovery and design. One of her published article as the main author was on potential compounds for DenV2 serine protease inhibitor from natural product extracts which resulted in being a top-highly cited paper within five year duration of publication (2006–2009). She was also instrumental in introducing computational and combinatorial chemistry in drug discovery work in Malaysia and was appointed to be one of members for the International Scientific Expert Committee on Combinatorial Chemistry and Computational Technology at the International Centre for Science and technology, United Nations Industrial Development Organization from 2007 to 2009. Fellow of the Academy of Sciences Malaysia, she has received the Malaysian Top Research Scientist Award and the British High Commissioner Chevening Award, among others. She currently leads the Open Science initiative for Malaysia.

CHI, Lifeng (China): (F). Professor, Institute of Functional Nano & Soft Materials, Soochow University, China. The nominee is a researcher in surface molecular science. Her work focuses on on-surface reactions, molecular self-assembly, and interfacial molecular patterning. She has made groundbreaking contributions to on-surface chemistry by activating the inert C-H bonds of n-alkane using anisotropic surfaces and triggering polymerization under mild conditions. This concept provides a new approach to selective C-H activation and C-C coupling. Chi has also discovered new pathways for synthesizing well-defined molecular nanostructures. Moreover, she obtained ordered molecular assemblies over wafer-size, which has been extensively studied, including stabilization, functionalization, mechanism, system expansion, and applications to various materials. Chi's innovative results have made significant contributions to the development of molecular surface science. Member of the Chinese Academy of Sciences, she has received Distinguished Women in Chemistry/Chemical Engineering Award of the International Union of Pure and Applied Chemistry, and the ACS Nano Lectureship Award.

KHAN, Khalid Mohammed (Pakistan): (M). Professor, University of Karachi, H. E. J. Research Institute of Chemistry, International Center for Chemical and Biological Sciences (ICCBS), Karachi, Pakistan. The nominee is among the most prominent scientists of Pakistan recognized for his original contributions in the field of medicinal chemistry and drug discovery. He has established a world-class medicinal and synthetic laboratory at the ICCBS, focusing on the discovery of new enzyme inhibitors and other bioactive compounds. He is mentoring a large number of young researchers in the field of drug designing and discovery. He supervised and co-supervised over 70 PhD and MPhil scholars. In the last two decades, he designed and synthesized several novel classes of bioactive compounds having new pharmacophores. He is authored or co-authored over 800 international research papers. His citation index exceeds 16,600 and 18 international and national patents represent top-quality research productivity. Member of the Pakistan Academy of Science, he has received Sitara-i-Imtiaz National (civil award), Tamgha-i-ImtiazNational (civil award) and twice the Gold Medal National Pakistan Academy of Sciences, among others.

KUBOTA, Lauro Tatsuo (Brazil): (M). Full Professor, University of Campinas, Brazil. The nominee brought Brazilian bioanalytical chemistry to the front of the international scenario, encompassing chemical fields of analytical chemistry to electrochemistry. He focused on developing analytical tools for biological, forensic, clinical, agriculture, environmental, and food applications, contributing to improving life quality and searching for a sustainable world, aiming to obtain portable and low-cost devices. He became a member of the São Paulo State Academy of Science in 2007, the Brazilian Academy of Science in 2010, and a Fellow of the Royal Society of Chemistry in 2014. He received several awards and honors, including the São Paulo State Governor Invention of the Year in 2000, the Zeferino Vaz Academic Recognition Award in 2004, and the National Order of Scientific Merit from the Brazilian Presidency in 2011, the Grã-Cruz level in 2018.

PANT, Hem Raj (Nepal): (M). Professor, Tribhuvan University, Institute of Engineering, Nepal. The nominee is a pioneering chemist of Nepal who has made a significant contribution towards fabricating advanced nanomaterials of polymer and ceramic which have potential application in biomedical field and environmental remediation.  His research on nanotechnology for the fabrication of hierarchical nanomembrane and nanoparticles using top-down and bottom-up approach has greatly enhanced our knowledge in the field of advanced nanomaterials. He taught and involved in research for three decades leading the research in materials science and engineering discipline. Pant has published 86 articles in SCI ranked journals, having 5,000 citations with h-index 40, maximum h-index of any individual scientist from Nepal. He has more than 100 conference proceeding and non-ranked journal publications. Pant is the author of 14 books/book chapters in chemistry and materials science. He has received the Nepal Bidya Bhushan presented by the President of Nepal and the Nepal Technology Award, Nepal Academy of Science and Technology, presented by Prime Minister of Nepal.

STRUMIA, Maria Cristina Del Milagro (Argentina): (F). Emeritus Professor, Facultad de Ciencias Quimicas, Universidad Nacional de Cordoba (UNC); and Superior Researcher, National Scientific and Technical Research Council, Argentina. The nominee's research projects goals are: Synthesis of new hydrogels and modification to specific applications properties (sensors, actuators, carriers, among others); Synthesis of macroporous and rigid polymeric supports and their application in affinity chromatography; Functionalization of polymeric films for smart and active packaging; Dendronization of polymers, surfaces and inorganic nanoparticles; Synthesis of smart nanogels and their applications in nanomedicine; Synthesis of associative polymers for their applications in enhanced petroleum recuperation (enhanced oil recovery). At UNC she has been director of the polymeric materials research group since 2001; director, Institute for Research and Development of Process Engineering and Applied Chemistry since 2018; member, Academic Council of the Innovative Technologies Management post-graduated career since 2017. Member of the National Academy of Sciences of Argentina, she has received the Women in Science, Outstanding Scientific Career Award, Ministry of Science and Technology, Córdoba, Argentina.

TYAGI, Avesh Kumar (India): (M). Director, Chemistry Group, Bhabha Atomic Research Centre, Mumbai; and Senior Professor (Chemistry), Homi Bhabha National Institute, Mumbai, India. The nominee's research is a unique blend of strong fundamental and applied components. Representative hitherto unknown functional materials prepared by him are RE1-xCexCrO3 based tunable band-gap materials, excellent oxygen storage capacitors in Ce-Gd-Zr-O system, tunable-dielectrics in hexagonal-ABO3 systems, new lead-free electro-active materials, and inorganic-organic hybrids. His research on next generation Li/Na ion battery materials led to transfer of technologies to several companies for commercialization. He made significant contributions to several projects of national importance e.g. thoria-based fuels, nuclear-waste management, nuclear safety, materials for harnessing radio-nuclides for health applications. His impact in terms of publications, books, invited-talks, PhD students, technologies, scientometrics, science promotion, science administration, gender parity contribution is phenomenal. He has tremendous leadership, mentoring, organizational skills and global outlook. Member of the National Academy of Sciences, India, Indian Academy of Sciences, and Royal Society of Chemistry, he has received Materials Research Society of India (MRSI) Awards—MRSI Medal; ICSC Materials Science Senior Award; C.N.R. Rao Prize—Chemical Research Society of India Awards (Bronze Medal; Silver Medal; Prof. C.N.R. Rao National Prize), among others.

05. Engineering & Computer Sciences

AGARWAL, Avinash Kumar (India): (M). Sir J.C. Bose National Fellow and State Bank of India Endowed Chair Professor, Indian Institute of Technology Kanpur, India. The nominee made pioneering contributions to research in internal combustion engines; combustion and optical diagnostics using transient and tomographic particle image velocimetry; laser ignition of hydrogen/compressed natural gas (CNG)/hydrogen compressed natural gas (HCNG) mixtures; biodiesel, methanol, alcohols and gaseous fuels; microscopic and macroscopic spray characterization using imaging and phase Doppler interferometry; emissions and particulate control; and lubricating oil tribology. He has carried out fundamental, innovative, and industrially-relevant applied research. These include the development of laser-ignited hydrogen/CNG/HCNG engines, low-temperature combustion engines with mode-switching capabilities, electronic fuel injection locomotive, low-cost non-noble metal-catalyzed diesel oxidation catalysts for particulate control, and assisted national policy formulation on biofuels and methanol economy. He is currently developing methanol-fuelled two-wheelers, cars, and dimethyl ether-fuelled tractor prototypes with industrial partners for unravelling India’s methanol economy. Member of the National Academy of Science, India, and of the Indian National Academy of Engineering, he has received Sir J.C. Bose Fellowship; Shanti Swarup Bhatnagar Prize; Clarivate Citation Award; Society of Automotive Engineers Guru Award; among many others.

MA, Guanghui (China): (F). Professor and Director, State Key Laboratory of Biochemical Engineering, China. The nominee has been well known for her pioneer work on size-controllable, structure-controllable and surface-controllable biocompatible microspheres, enabling the successful production of uniform biocompatible microspheres for cell culture, chromatography, drug delivery and vaccine formulations by companies and institutions worldwide. Member of the Chinese Academy of Sciences, Fellow of the American Institute for Medical and Biological Engineering, among others, she has received the Second Class Award of National Invention, the First Class Award of Beijing Science and Technology, the First Class Award of Science and Technology - Fundamental Research Achievement of the Chemical Industry and Engineering Society of China, TWAS-TWOWS-SCOPUS Young women researcher award (Winner of Engineering and Technology Category).

SALIT, Mohd Sapuan (Malaysia): (M). Head, Advanced Engineering Materials and Composites Research Centre, Univesity Putra Malaysia. The nominee is an “A” Grade Professor of Composite Materials at Universiti Putra Malaysia. He published over 900 journal papers, 60 books, 220 book chapters, and supervised 96 PhD and 75 Master students. His current h-index is 103 with 39,641 citations. He received ISESCO Science Award, Islamic World Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization; Khwarizmi International Award, SAE Subir Chowdhury Medal of Quality Leadership, USA; IET Malaysia Leadership Award; TWAS Award in Engineering Sciences; Top Research Scientists Malaysia Award, Malaysia’s Research Star Award; and Outstanding Contribution Award, International Society of Bionic Engineering. He is listed among the 2% Top World Scientists by Stanford University. He is Fellow, Academy of Sciences Malaysia, Society of Automotive Engineers, and International Society for Development and Sustainability.

SIMCHI, Abdolreza (Arash) (the Islamic Republic of Iran): (M). Distinguished Professor of Material Science and Engineering, Sharif University of Technology, Tehran, the Islamic Republic of Iran. The nominee has more than 20 years of research at Sharif University on advanced functional materials, innovative manufacturing techniques, nano-materials,and biomaterials. He focused on: using carbon nano-structures providing long drug release from the nano-structured coatings, and for drug-eluting coatings preventing bacterial infections of orthopedic implants; magnetic resonance image tracking of stem cells using nanoparticles, tools for advancement of clinical regenerative medicine; using nanoparticle in drug transmission. He published more than 300 articles, over 10 patents  and 4 books. He gave a number of invited lectures, that have attracted worldwide attention, clear from his over 14,000 citations with h-index 63. He received many national and international awards and has served in different capacities in university administration and national policy making bodies.

TOLEDO FILHO, Romildo Dias (Brazil): (M). Full Professor, Civil Engineering Program at Alberto Luiz Coimbra Institute for Graduate Studies and Engineering Research (Coppe); General Director, Coppe; Coordinator of the Center for Sustainable Materials (NUMATS) and of the Living Lab for Smart Construction (LCI), Universidade Federal do Rio de Janeiro (UFRJ), Brazil. The nominee is a member of the Bamboo Construction Task Force of the International Bamboo and Rattan Organization; the Latin America Network for the Sustainable Development Goals; and President of the Brazilian Society for Non-Conventional Materials. Member of the Brazilian Science Academy, he is the author of over 260 peer-reviewed journal papers and has received awards from the Brazilian Institute of Concrete and the Vale-CAPES prize “Ciência e Sustentabilidade” in 2015 for supervising the best PhD thesis in greenhouse gases reduction. He is a Researcher 1A of the Brazilian National Council for Scientific and Technological Development, and Senior Scientist of Rio de Janeiro State Agency Fundação de Amparo à Pesquisa do Estado do Rio de Janeiro.

06. Earth, Climate & Environmental Sciences

CHANDRAJITH, Rohana (Sri Lanka): (M). Professor, University of Peradeniya, Sri Lanka. The nominee is involved in research in environmental geochemistry in bridging chemical, biological and geological sciences to address multi-faceted environmental problems, including hydrochemistry and medical geology. Published over 150 research papers in international journals and written 3 books and 9 chapters with a Google h-Index of 36. Co-author of Introduction to Medical Geology, published by Springer, Germany. Recipient of the Georg Forster Research Award from Alexander von Humboldt Foundation Germany (2021), one of the German government's highest awards given to scientists from developing countries. Fellow of the National Academy of Science, Sri Lanka, he was among the recipients of the National Awards for Science and Technology Achievements for "Excellence in international collaboration for the advancement of science and technology". He also received the Most Outstanding Senior Researcher Excellence Award of the Committee of Vice-Chancellors and Directors, Sri Lanka.

HEILBRON, Monica (Brazil): (F). Full professor, Head of the Graduate Program in Geosciences, and Head of the Tektos Geotectonic Research Group, Rio de Janeiro State University, Brazil. She was vice-rector of research and graduate studies for eight years, building new programmes for research, graduate programmes, and laboratories. In the geoscience field, the nominee is (co-) responsible for research labs, as the sample preparation, MEV, Isotopic Geology and LA_ICPMS Labs. In the last 25 years she has coordinated multi-institutional research projects related with the amalgamation and break-up of supercontinents, and applied projects in economic geology, environment, and natural disasters fields, with industry and academy partnership. She was the supervisor of more than 50 graduate students, and published around 150 scientific papers and book chapters. Member of the Brazilian Academy of Sciences, she has received several awards, 2004 Best Research by the Engineering Society, 2016 Orville Derby Gold Medal by the Brazilian Society, 2017 Prize for Best Undergraduate Research Projects, among others.

HUANG, Jianping (China): (M). Director, Collaborative Innovation Center for Western Ecological Safety, Lanzhou University, China. The nominee has been studying semi-arid climate change in northwestern China for 20 years. He initiated systematic observations of semi-arid climate change in China, and built a theoretical framework for semi-arid climate change research. Moreover, Huang proposed a thermodynamic mechanism for enhanced warming, as well as a land-atmosphere feedback mechanism for expansion in semi-arid regions. He also identified new mechanisms and pathways for ocean-atmosphere interactions that drive semi-arid climate change. Furthermore, he developed a climate model that combined historical observational data, reducing the uncertainty of future projections. He has published over 270 papers in SCI journals, which have been cited over 15,000 times. Member of the Chinese Academy of Sciences, he has received the Second Prize of Outstanding Achievement Award for Scientific Research in Universities and First Prize of Science and Technology Progress Award of Gansu Province, among others.

NAGENDRA, Harini (India): (F). Director, Research Centre, Azim Premji University, India. The nominee is known for her research on forest conservation, and urban sustainability, with several seminal publications. Her interdisciplinary work on forests combining remote sensing, biodiversity studies and institutional analysis is recognized for elucidating the link between pattern and process, demonstrating the interplay between human drivers of forest change and biophysical parameters that influence changes in landscape pattern, impacting biodiversity and conservation outcomes across a range of different locations. Her work on urban sustainability highlights the importance of urban ecosystems in contributing critical ecosystem services and impacting urban resilience and human wellbeing, especially of marginalized communities. Her work has highlighted the importance of research on urban sustainability in the Indian context, which forms an important global gap. Member of the Indian National Science Academy, she has received the Elinor Ostrom Senior Scholar Award for Collective Governance of the Commons, and the Cozzarelli Prize of Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences for paper “Insights on linking forests, trees and people from the air, on the ground, and in the lab”, co-authored with Elinor Ostrom, among others.

TAYLOR, Michael Alexander (Jamaica): (M). Professor of Climate Science, University of the West Indies, Jamaica. Small islands facing existential threats due to climate change, the nominee’s research aims to fill a Caribbean climate information gap, and position the region to understand and cope with its threat. His research includes dynamical theories about Caribbean climate e.g. the associations with large scale global drivers, the modulating roles of the Pacific and Atlantic Oceans and the importance of the Caribbean low level jet. His work has been used for seasonal prediction and in regional early warning systems. The research also focuses on climate change science in and at the scale of the Caribbean islands, including (i) an examination of historical trends in Caribbean climate; (ii) the production of downscaled (statistical and dynamical) future projections of climate for the Caribbean at the small island scale; (iii) the modelling of impacts on critical sectors for the Caribbean; and (iv) the determination of mechanisms for bridging the science-policy interface. Member of the Caribbean Academy of Sciences, he has received the TWAS Prize for Young Scientists in Developing Countries by the Caribbean Academy of Sciences -Trinidad and Tobago, the Anthony B. Sabga Caribbean Laureate for Excellence – Science, the Gold Award: Caribbean Water and Waste Water Association, and The University of the West Indies Vice Chancellor’s Award for Excellence in Research Achievements, among others.

07. Mathematical Sciences

ARAUJO-PARDO, Gabriela (Mexico): (F). Principal investigator, PhD, President of the Mexican Mathematical Society (2022–2024), Math Institute, National University of Mexico. Discrete applied mathematics, combinatorics, and graph theory have been the passion of this eminent mathematician. Her major scientific accomplishments are related to her area of specialization of discrete mathematics and graph theory, specifically her work has been in finite geometries and graph theory, specifically on extreme graphs: construction and study of Cages and Moore's graphs and complete colorations in graphs. She has an impressive CV having more than 60 published papers, around 100 talks and contributions on conferences proceedings, leader of 11 research projects. Nowadays, Araujo-Pardo is a member of the National System of Reserchers-Consejo Nacional de Humanidades, Ciencias y Tecnologías of Mexico, Level II and Level D of the programme of rewards for efficiency (PRIDE) of the National Autonomous University of Mexico (UNAM). Member of the Mexican Science Academy, she has received the Sor Juana Inés de la Cruz Prize, Instituto de Matemáticas, UNAM; and Sofía-Kovalevskaia grant (2004).

GUMEL, Abba B. (USA): (M). Michael and Eugenia Brin Endowed E-Nnovate Chair in Mathematics, University of Maryland, Maryland, USA; and Extraordinary Professor, University of Pretoria, South Africa. The nominee's research contributions treat of mathematical biology, applied dynamical systems and computational mathematics. He specifically contributed to the mathematical theory of epidemics, with emphasis on three categories, namely (i) mathematics of vector-borne diseases, (ii) backward bifurcations in disease transmission models and (iii) design of dynamically-consistent finite-difference methods for solving disease transmission models. He has made outstanding achievements and impacts in the study of the transmission dynamics and control of vector-borne diseases (including malaria), disease pandemics (including the 2009 H1N1 swine influenza pandemic, and the 2019 novel coronavirus pandemic), sexually-transmitted diseases (including chlamydia, herpes, syphilis and HIV/AIDS), design of dynamically-consistent finite-difference methods for solving epidemiological models and the qualitative theory of nonlinear differential equations arising in epidemiology (particularly backward bifurcations). Member of the Nigerian Academy of Science and African Academy of Sciences, he has received the Bellman Prize; five times the Merit Award for research excellence, University of Manitoba; and the Young African Mathematician Medal, African Mathematical Union; among others.

NADEEM, Sohail (Pakistan): (M). Professor (Tenured) Chairman, Department of Mathematics, Quaid-I-Azam University, Pakistan. The nominee has received university merit fellowship during his MPhil and got Razi-ud-Din fellowship during PhD studies. He has been a regular recipient of the Research Productivity Awards, Pakistan Council for Science and Technology (PCST), since 2006. He is honored recipient of seven PCST awards. In 2018, he was among the top four best scientists of Pakistan. In 2011, the president of Pakistan has conferred him with the Tamgha-i-Imtiaz. Nadeem got the TWAS Prize for Young Scientists in Developing Countries by the Pakistan Academy of Sciences for the year 2012. He was also selected as TWAS Young Affiliate for the years 2011-2016 and has been a member of the Pakistan Academy of Sciences since 2012. The Higher Education Commission (HEC) of Pakistan awarded him the Best Young Researcher Award for the year 2011. In 2016, he got Pakistan Academy of Sciences (PAS) Gold Medal in Mathematics and Best University Teacher Award from the HEC, Pakistan. In 2019 he has been elected as the Fellow of PAS.

OUKNINE, Youssef (Morocco): (M). Professor, Cadi Ayyad University, Marrakesh, Morocco. The nominee’s scientific accomplishments concern stochastic analysis and probability theory and their applications, focusing on stochastic calculus, optimal stopping, Malliavin’s calculus, stochastic differential equations (forward and backward) and fractional stochastic calculus. Stochastic finance is currently one of his research concerns. He published more than 160 scientific papers in reputed international peer-reviewed journals such as Annals of Applied Probability, Stochastic Processes and their Applications, Electronic Journal of Probability, Electronic Communications in Probability, Bulletin des Sciences Mathématiques, Journal of Theoretical Probability. He is referee and co-editor of several scientific journals of high international repute. He is also one of the initiators of international meetings in stochastic analysis and probability theory, and several training schools in stochastic process theory. He is a member of the Hassan II Academy of Sciences and Technology, Morocco.

TANG, Tao (China): (M). President and Chair Professor of Mathematics, The Beijing Normal University – Hong Kong Baptist University United International College, China. The nominee has made significant contributions to scientific computing including numerical analysis for nonlinear conservation laws, adaptive methods and spectral methods for partial differential equations. He authored 145 papers, and was an invited speaker at the International Congress of Mathematician in 2018. He has been managing-editor of Communications in Computational Physics since 2008, and was the founding managing-editor of East Asia Journal on Applied Mathematics founded in 2011. He served as the president of Hong Kong Mathematical Society, and the president of East Asia section of the Society for Industrial and Applied Mathematics. Member of the Chinese Academy of Sciences, he has received the National Natural Science Award (second class), China; Feng Kang Prize for Scientific Computing, China; and Leslie Fox Prize for Numerical Analysis, United Kingdom; among others.

08. Physics, Astronomy & Space Sciences

CHEN, Li-Chyong (Taiwan, China): (F). Professor, Department of Physics and Distinguished Research Fellow, Center for Condensed Matter Sciences, National Taiwan University, Taiwan, China. The nominee is specialized in synthesizing low-dimensional nanomaterials by physical and chemical vapor depositions (CVD), especially, those involving highly energized process. Her core competence is in carbon and earth-abundant elements-based materials for optoelectronic and energy applications, e.g.: (i) Using microwave plasma-enhanced (PE) CVD to grow self-organized Au nanoparticle-peapodded-silica nanowires. Due to surface plasmon resonance, the Au-SiO2 nanopeapod exhibits color-selective switching behavior (Nature Materials 2006). (ii) Developing electron-cyclotron-resonance PECVD (with patent) to form moth-eye-mimicking Si-nanotips, which exhibit broadband (from UV to Terahertz), wide-angle (up to 70°) and polarization-independent antireflection properties (Nature Nanotechnology 2007). (iii) Developing single-atom catalysts for oxygen evolution reaction and 2D nanomaterials for CO2 reduction (namely, solar fuels), which is a killing-two-birds-in-one-stone approach for energy and environment. Member of Academia Sinica, she has received the Young Scholar Research Award, Academia Sinica; Outstanding Research Award, National Science Council, Taiwan; Laureate of the Khwarizmi International Award, Islamic Republic of Iran; among others.

PARISI, Giorgio (Italy): (M). Emeritus Professor, Sapienza University of Rome and Vice-President, Accademia Nazionale dei Lincei, Italy. The nominee has done groundbreaking contributions to our understanding of complex physical systems which led him to winning the Nobel Prize in Physics in 2021 for his revolutionary contributions to the theory of disordered and random phenomena. Parisi has been an active supporter of the TWAS-SISSA-Lincei exchange programme, offering training and cooperation visits of young scientists from least developed countries to laboratories located in Trieste, Italy. Member of the Italian Accademia dei Lincei, the Accademia dei Quaranta, the Académie des Sciences, the United States National Academy of Sciences, the European Academy, the Academia Europea, the American Philosophical Society and of the Academia Pontaniana, he has received many other national and international awards: Feltrinelli Prize for Physics, Italgas Prize, Dirac Medal for theoretical physics, Italian Prime Minister Prize, Enrico Fermi Award, Dannie Heineman Prize, Nonino Prize, Galileo Prize, Microsoft Prize, Lagrange Prize, Vittorio De Sica Prize, Prix des Trois Physiciens, Nature Award for Mentoring in Science, High Energy and EPS Particle Physics Prize, APS Lars Onsager Prize, Pomeranchuk Prize and the Wolf Prize in physics.

SOUZA FILHO, Antonio (Brazil): (M). Full Professor, Universidade Federal do Ceará, Fortaleza, Brazil. The nominee made important contributions to the understanding of electronic and vibrational properties of different materials (at bulk and nanoscale) by using inelastic light scattering. His major accomplishments have been on advancing the understanding the electron-phonon coupling in nanocarbon materials using electronic and vibrational properties of carbon nanostructures materials by combining resonance Raman scattering and theoretical models. Member of the Brazilian Academy of Sciences, he has received The National Legion of Scientific Merit, Presidency of Brazil; Somiya Award 2009 for International Collaboration on carbon nanostructure materials, International Union of Materials Research Societies, among others.

TAYALATI, Yahya (Morocco): (M). Full Professor, University Mohammed V in Rabat, Morocco. The nominee has made significant contributions to ATLAS collaboration for over two decades, including the construction and operation of the Liquid Argon Presampler and the observation of light-by-light scattering. He also played a crucial role in the field of neutrino physics, where his involvement in the preparation and deployment of the ANTARES telescope led to the establishment of competitive limits on exotic particles. Additionally, he collaborated with the Cubic Kilometre Neutrino Telescope KM3NeT to establish advanced production lines for optical modules and electro-optics routers in Morocco. Moreover, he initiated a project to involve Morocco in the ATLAS High Granularity Timing Detector upgrade, providing training opportunities for the youth, and facilitating technology transfer to his country. Member of the African Academy of Sciences and honorary member of the Islamic World Academy of Sciences, he has received the prestigious Mustafa Prize for all his contributions to researches in physics as well as promoting scientific development in Morocco and beyond, and the TWAS Arab Regional Award for 2022 in Science Diplomacy.

09. Social & Economic Sciences

HAMID, Aizan (Malaysia): (F). Research Fellow, Malaysian Research Institute on Ageing, Malaysia. The nominee pioneered the development of research and education in gerontology in Malaysia. Hamid is actively involved in regional work in the Association of Southeast Asian Nations (ASEAN) on ageing, and responsible for the development of ASEAN Ageing Research Network for ASEAN member states. She was the consultant to develop the Kuala Lumpur Declaration on Ageing: Empowering Older Persons in ASEAN, adopted by ASEAN head of states in 2015.She is a prolific writer and researcher and obtained Scopus h-index of 24. She led more than 50 research projects and was co-investigator to more than 40 projects. She was appointed as consultant by the United Nations Population Fund (UNFPA) to develop a proposal for the establishment of the Center on Ageing Research in Science University in Mongolia in 2018. She is an international tutor for the United Nations International Institute on Ageing based in Malta, and an editorial member of their journal. She trained and supervised more than 20 master's and PhD students in gerontology and related fields. She is a member of the Academy of Science Malaysia.

LEE, Tatia Mei Chun (China): (F). Associate Vice-President (Academic) and Chair Professor of Psychological Science and Clinical Psychology, The University of Hong Kong, China. The nominee is a globally renowned social scientist with strong publication records bolstered by remarkable research accomplishments. A key theme in her research is using neuroimaging methods to understand social behaviors. This has gained her international recognition and unique opportunities, such as being an invited founding board member of the Society for Social Neuroscience. Her contribution to the knowledge of the role of the pons in affective processing offers critical insight into the neural underpinnings of mood disorders. Together with her successful application of neuropsychological data to model cognitive and psychological processes for functional prediction, timely intervention for neurodegenerative and affective disorders are accomplishable goals. Furthermore, the Chinese normative data for neuropsychological measures she developed complements her social science research. Lee’s scientific accomplishments have earned her fellowship status in esteemed societies. She has received the State Scientific and Technological Progress Award, and The University of Hong Kong Outstanding Researcher Award, among others.

OKEREKE, Chukwumerije (United Kingdom): (M). Professor and Director, Center for Climate Change and Development, Alex Ekwueme Federal University Ndufu-Alike, Nigeria. The nominee has made significant contributions to scholarship on how different conceptions of justice influence global climate governance and the implications for climate-resilient sustainable development in developing countries. He has worked with a diverse array of stakeholders to mobilise research to shape climate governance in Africa including drafting a climate change law in Nigeria, modelling Nigeria’s long-term low-carbon development strategy, designing African Unions’ Adaptation Initiative, and drafting the first ever national green growth plan in Africa, for the Government of Rwanda. He is a visiting professor at both the University of Reading and London School of Economics, United Kingdom. He has served as lead author and coordinating lead author for the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change, and is a member of the African Academy of Sciences.

RIOS-NETO, Eduardo (Brazil): (M). Retired Full Professor and Volunteer Professor, Federal University of Minas Gerais (UFMG), Brazil. The nominee is a leading applied social scientist in Brazil, combining the field of demography with economics and sociology. He contributed to building a top graduate program in demography in Brazil and the Latin American region. He enhanced research and training cooperation between the Center for Development and Regional Planning-UFMG and other universities in the Unites States, Europe, Latin America, and other developing areas worldwide. In the policy-oriented side of science, he was head of the National Commission on Population and Development, and upon retirement, he directed the Brazilian Institute of Geography and Statistics. He has influential publications in the areas of fertility, the demography of education, demographic dividend or bonus, and female labor force participation. Member of the Brazilian Academy of Sciences, he has received the Brazilian Federal Government Medal of Scientific Merit, four prizes for best doctoral dissertations throughout the years, granted by the Brazilian agency CAPES, which supports graduate programs.

About TWAS

For 40 years, The World Academy of Sciences for the advancement of science in developing countries (TWAS) has been a leading force in developing crucial scientific capability in some of the most underdeveloped countries in the world.A global science academy founded in 1983 in Trieste, Italy, TWAS supports sustainable prosperity through research, education, policy, and diplomacy. With its partners, it has graduated over 1,000 PhDs and offered hundreds of postdoctoral fellowships to developing world scientists. The Academy also hosts prestigious scientific awards in the global South, has offered numerous research grants, and supports exchange visits for scientists. TWAS is a programme unit of UNESCO. More information: