"Gen z spark"

lightning talks

In Collaboration with The Knowledge Society (TKS)

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Are you a high school student or an undergrad at college working on a science or technology project/research?

Do you want to present your work to leaders in academia, industry and government and meet like-minded peers?


For the first time, in collaboration with
The Knowledge Society (TKS), PUZZLE X is inviting enthusiastic high schoolers and undergrads to present their projects and research at the interactive Spark Stage during PUZZLE X global forum Nov 7-9 in Barcelona. Your projects/research don't have to be super complicated or groundbreaking! It can be simple (like a high school project), but you should be passionate and excited about it!.

The purpose of "Gen Z Spark" Lightning Talks is to discover new talents and provide young innovators the opportunity to communicate their research and projects in a form of a 3-minute presentation to some of the leading figures in science and industry who will be attending the session.
This is an excellent opportunity for you to showcase your work to the leaders of frontier technology at such a young age and kickstart your career in this field! You will also be able to communicate with decision makers that can provide you with insight, partnership and career opportunities. The projects don't have to be deeply scientific or groundbreaking! You can simply present your high school project if that's something what excites you!

The 1st place winners of the “Gen Z Spark” will receive a special prize from our partner TKS!

Who are PUZZLE X Speakers & stakeholders?

Every year PUZZLE X brings together world renowned scientists and researchers and industry leaders to bridge the gap between academia and industry. Among PUZZLE X speakers:

- Sir Kostya Novoselov | Nobel Laureate in Graphene, Professor at the Faculty of Materials Science and Engineering, NUS

- Dr. Pablo Jarillo-Herrero | Professor of Physics, MIT

- Dr .William Daniel Phillips | Nobel Laureate in Laser Cooling, NIST Fellow

- Dr. Yury Gogotsi | Distinguished Professor and Director, A.J Drexel Nanomaterials Institute at Drexel University

- Dr. Hiroshi Ishii | Associate Director, MIT Media Group and Head, Tangible Media Group

- Dr. Vladimir Falko | Professor and Director, National Graphene Institute, University of Manchester

- Dr. Andrea C. Ferrari | Professor of Nanotechnology at the Department of Engineering, University of Cambridge

- Dr. Antonio Castro Neto | Distinguished Professor at the Faculty of Materials Science and Engineering, NUS

- Dr. Babak Anasori | Assistant Professor at the Department of Mechanical and Energy Engineering, Purdue University

- Andres De Leon | CEO, Hyperloop TT

- Dr. Pablo Rodriguez | Director at CTO office, Google X

- Sir Robin Saxby | Founder, Ex- CEO, President, Executive Chairman at ARM

- Dr. Chema Alonso | Chief Digital Officer, Telefonica

- Carles Navarro | Managing Director of BASF Spain , BASF

Why apply?

-You have an excellent opportunity to present your work to leaders in the Industry and Academia and the Policy/Decision Makers in the Government, all in a single place. A very unique opportunity for someone so young!

-You'll get the full access to the PUZZLE X event and its networking opportunities for free!

- PuzzleX is one of the most prestigious forums in the world given the caliber of people who are part of PuzzleX. From Noble Laureates, leading professors from Universities like MIT, Harvard, NUS etc., to CEO’s of prominent influential Deep Tech Companies to Mayors and Senate Members from the Government. This kind of gathering is rare and to be able to present your work to such a crowd is not a opportunity you get anywhere else.

- The 1st place winners of the “Gen Z Spark” will receive a special prize from our partner TKS!

In collaboration with The Knowledge Society (TKS)

The Knowledge Society (TKS) is the the world’s top global accelerator for teens aged 13-19. World Economic Forum has recently named the organization a leader in Global Innovation and Creativity, including complex problem-solving and analytical thinking.

TKS has been growing young researchers and innovators from 2015. Their alumni now launch their own startups, work at leading tech companies like SpaceX or IBM, and do research at top universities like Stanford and MIT. At PUZZLE X you’ll be able to talk to some of the TKS associates, directors, and students. You will also see some of their alumni speak at our stages.

To increase the number of deep tech researchers and innovators, we need to start coaching and motivating them from their young age. That why this November PUZZLE X and TKS are joining their efforts to find new science and tech talents among gen Z. Don’t hesitate to apply, we’d love to see what you’re working on!

Who can apply?

High school students
Undergraduate students majoring on any science or engineering field
You should be working on a science/technology project or research (doesn’t have to be 100% finished or super complicated, the main criteria — your excitement about the project)

Winners of Lightning talks

A multi disciplinary panel of judges from academia professors and senior scientists, industry leaders, deep tech entrepreneurs and investors will attend your presentation at the Spark Stage and they will select 3 winners.

- The winners will be announced on Nov 8
- The winners will be invited to attend the award session
- The winners will be interviewed onsite and the interview will be circulated on multiple platforms
- The winners will be invited to the PUZZLEX VIP reception
- The winners will be invited to the PUZZLEX networking sessions
- The 3 winners will receive special prizes from our partner TKS!

3 min lightning talks format

- You will have the unique opportunity to present your research to peers in the Scientific Community, Leaders in the Industry, and the Policy and Decision Makers in the Government.

- PUZZLE X “Gen Z Spark” lightning talks format encourages you to prepare slides that will be accompanying your talk by using digital graphical means to make people from every walk of life understand the intricacies involved at the frontier of scientific research.

- You will have 3 MINUTES and a maximum of 10 SLIDES in your Presentation to showcase your research.

- Explain the WHY, HOW and WHAT of your research. Tell us the story of WHY your research will benefit the world in the future, HOW your research will shape the technologies of the future, and WHAT did you do to make that technology happen.

-Include Images, Videos, GIFs, Small demos of your working systems or whatever you want to show people, to make the presentation truly unique, truly yours, and give everyone a glimpse into the future of frontier science through the eyes of a deep tech researcher.

How to apply?

- Submit your application using the form below. * DEADLINE:  Sep 30th
- PUZZLE X team will review your application. All selected applicants will be notified within 2 weeks.
- You will then be given the guidelines to prepare your E-Poster to be presented in person in Barcelona.
- You will have to submit your finalized slides by October 7.
- You will present your slides at the PUZZLE X Spark Stage in Barcelona.
- Judges will select the winners of the slides Session.
- The winners will be interviewed onsite.

Guidelines For Submission of Abstract:

The abstract should be around 100 words. In a concise way, you need to explain your research and how it relates to the world:
- Start with 2-3 sentences on the gap/question you are trying to answer (Why did you do it?).
- Followed by a few sentences on your approach and method (What and How did you do it).
- Then describe your findings/solutions, and finish the abstract with 2-3 sentences on how your research relates to the bigger picture and benefits the world.

If you have any pictures, prototypes, articles, or publications related to your project, use supplementary materials and additional information sections of the application. We'd love to learn more about your work!
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* Note: The applications are selected based on how well the research is communicated to a cross-discipline as well as a non-scientific audience. The Science Spark E-Poster session is an initiative to bridge the gap between Complex Deep Science and Industry & society. Submitting the abstract of your paper or your research without tailoring it to a general audience will disqualify you.

Bonus: All applicants will be invited to attend PUZZLE X networking session with Frontier Tech leaders from global scientific institutions, industry leaders, materials innovators, government officials and more.

Bonus: All applications submitted before Sep 20, 2023 will be considered for the Future Leaders Awards.