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2 Mar 2016


WTI awarded 2 new SNSF professorships

The Swiss National Science Foundation (SNSF) has awarded 40 new professorships to outstanding young researchers. Thirteen of these went to the University of Bern, including two to the World Trade Institute (WTI).

In a media release on 2 March, the university said it was the first time it had been awarded so many new professorships. Women also outnumbered men among the grantees for the first time.The recipients comprised seven women and six men, the university said.

Six other universities and federal institutes were among this year’s recipients.

At the WTI the young researchers honoured were Elisa Fornalé and Damian Raess.

Elisa Fornalé received funding for a project entitled ‘Framing Environmental Degradation, Human Mobility and Human Development as a Matter of Common Concern'. The project aims to contribute to a conceptualisation of climate-driven migration and a new understanding of the responsibility of states in dealing with collective problems. It is based on the emerging doctrine of common concern in international law.

Political scientist Damian Raess was awarded his funding for a project entitled ‘BRICs Globalisation and Labour Protection in Advanced and Emerging Economies’. The rapid rise of the BRICs economies (Brazil, Russia, India, China) creates new global opportunities as well as risks for employees. The project investigates under what conditions BRICs trade and foreign investment enhance or undermine labour standards in Europe and in the BRICs themselves.

The average funding the researchers will receive is 1.49 million Swiss francs per professorship over a four-year period, which is sufficient for them to recruit teams and set up their own projects, the SNSF said in a statement.

The SNSF has awarded a total of 649 SNSF professorships since 1999, when the scheme was launched.