Fellows 1st call

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Country of origin : Ecuador
Hosting Research Unit : Gulliver

Country of origin : India
Hosting Research Unit : Physics & Materials

Anna Kotova
Country of origin : Russia
Hosting Research Unit : Chemistry Biology and Innovation


I did my bachelor studies in Chemical Engineering at Universidad San Francisco de Quito in Ecuador and then I undertook a master degree in materials chemistry at Université Pierre et Marie Curie in Paris. One of the most enriching parts of my studies were the trainings I did both at the industry and in research centers such as Ferrero, Deltagen and the ISMO. After graduating I worked as chemistry lecturer in different universities of Ecuador where my interest for research became even bigger.

PHD PROJECT : "Topological living matter"

My PhD project, « Topological living matter » deals with the physics arising from the coupling between active fluids and complex passive fluids such as liquid crystals. The active material, derived from biological constituents, under certain conditions displays chaotic motion. By interfacing the latter with a well-structured passive matrix we can control the flows and the dynamics of topological defects (at the interface) which can be used as templates to direct the self-assembly of materials.

"My PhD in 1 minute" - Martina Clairand


I was born and raised in the suburbs of Kolkata, one of the largest cities in eastern India. I completed my BS-MS dual degree program from IISER Kolkata in 2016 with the specialization in Chemical sciences. Later in 2018, I moved to Paris as a MSCA doctoral student at Laboratory of Physics and Materials (LPEM) in ESPCI Paris.

PHD PROJECT : "Biodetection with whispering quantum dots"

The title of my PhD project is “Bio-detection with Whispering Quantum dots”. This interdisciplinary project is focused on developing a novel diagnostic tool for disease detection that basically exploits the phenomenon of resonance energy transfer between a quantum dot based optical donor and an acceptor moiety.

"My PhD in 1 minute" - Subha Jana

Subha JANA

I was born and raised in Russia, in Novosibirsk – the scientific capital of Siberia. I graduated from Novosibirsk state university (NSU) with master degree in chemistry. The most important thing my University gave me is the ability to solve complex tasks. My alma-mater is famous for its collaboration with different research centers all over the world. The last couple of years which I have spent in various laboratories and research centers (chemical institutes of Siberian branch of Russian academy of science, Schlumberger technology center) were sufficient for me to realize that I really wish and able to take PhD and to be succeed in science and industry : it is a chance to see the world wider along with the future career perspectives. As for me, I am very active and easygoing person and have been in charge of volunteering and organizing events such as congresses, scientific conferences, students’ events etc, these are my hobbies.

PHD PROJECT : "Metal-organic frameworks : a novel stationary phase for chromatography"
It is an interesting and unique research task that required a collaboration between two research units. I am working under supervision of Dr Christian Serre and Dr Antoine Tissot in Institut des Matériaux Poreux de Paris (IMAP) and Dr Jerôme Vial and Dr Didier Thiebaut in laboratory “Sciences Analytiques, Bioanalytiques et Miniaturisation” of ESPCI. I have chosen this project because I find it very perspective and valuable. Analytical chemistry is involved in many areas of human activities especially about chromatography. Extraordinary properties of MOFs can bring immediate benefits to improve the quality of analysis. Being a part of such an ambitious project is a good opportunity for me to grow up as researcher. Meanwhile it is a great experience to achieve significant skills. I will do my best and perform my project succesfully !

"My PhD in 1 minute" - Anna Kotova

Country of origin : Belgium
Hosting Research Unit : Soft Matter Sciences & Engineering

Country of origin : France
Hosting Research Unit : Soft Matter Sciences & Engineering

Country of origin : Spain
Hosting Research Unit : Soft Matter Sciences & Engineering


After obtaining my Bachelor’s degree in engineering from the University of Liège, Belgium, I continued with a Master in chemical and material science engineering at the same place. During this time, I had the opportunity to do an exchange at the NTNU in Trondheim, Norway, and to write my Master thesis in collaboration with Total S.A about Solid-State NMR applications on catalysts.

PHD PROJECT : "Internal field NMR for in-situ characterization of Cobalt metal nanostructures in energy materials"

The aim of my PhD project is the in-situ characterization of cobalt metal nanostructures in battery materials by internal field nuclear magnetic resonance spectroscopy (IF-NMR). Using this method to deduce the crystalline and magnetic structures of those nanostructures, the goal is to better understand the reaction mechanisms that that happen inside Co-Li batteries.

"My PhD in 1 minute" - Pascal Scholzen


I did my study in France until the baccalauréat and then I moved to Switzerland, Lausanne, to do my bachelor and master at EPFL (Ecole Polytechnique Fédérale de Lausanne) in physics. Studying physics gives a lot of opportunities : I started to specialize in astrophysics and then in biophysics. During my master, I had the chance to do an internship in a start-up (4DCell) and in a big company (L’Oréal) which were both very formative.

PHD PROJECT : "Gel fracture : processes involved at the vicinity of an advancing crack using shear wave elastography"

I am currently doing a PhD that merges three interesting scientific fields : chemistry, mechanics and imaging. My subject is : “Use of shear wave elastography to assess the mechanical and fracture behaviour of model gel”. My work is to find analogies between the hybrid hydrogel I design and biological tissues to get a great study platform and better understand what we measure in elastography for diagnosis.

"My PhD in 1 minute" - Heiva Le Blay


I studied a BS in Physics at the Autonomous University of Madrid, and my Master in Physics of Complex Systems at IFISC-UIB in Palma de Mallorca. My interest in Statistical Physics and Soft Matter led me to study the effects of confinement on a system of hard rods, and of mixing flows on interacting Brownian particles as my final projects.

PHD PROJECT : "Flows at molecular scales : probing and manipulating ultra-thin liquid films"

The topic of my thesis is dewetting of thin liquid films. Through Marangoni effects, we are able to control the shape of the liquid layer. In this way, we will gain fundamental insights about the properties of dewetted areas and the contact line, e.g. if there exists a remaining microscopic film behind the receding front of the fluid.

"My PhD in 1 minute" - Martin Maza Cuello

Country of origin : Ecuador
Hosting Research Unit : The Langevin Institute Waves & Images

Country of origin : United States
Hosting Research Unit : Soft Matter & Chemistry

Country of origin : India
Hosting Research Unit : Brain Plasticity


My name is Camilo Pérez and I am a graduate student in the experimental physics domain. My higher education began at Universidad San Francisco de Quito in my home country Ecuador, place where I obtained my BSc in Physics. Afterwards I decided to explore my favorite topics and got enrolled in a Condensed Matter Masters program at Université de Strasbourg through which I found an encouraging motivation to continue my career towards research.

PHD PROJECT : "Energy transfer between fluorescent emitters : from weak to strong coupling regime"

In September 2018 I joined the UptoParis program for pursuing my PhD at the ESPCI. I work at Institut Langevin under the supervision of Valentina Krachmalnicoff in a fascinating project which includes plasmonics and fluorescence microscopy. Within my research I study the radiative energy transfer between fluorophores coupled to a metallic environment, ranging their interaction from the weak to the strong regime.

"My PhD in 1 minute" - Camilo R. Perez de la Vega


Olivia is an American student from New York. She obtained a bachelor’s in chemistry, then a masters in organometallic synthesis. Upon graduation she worked as an adjunct professor and tutor. She was also a research assistant working on the development of aqueous graphene inks for use in ink-jet printing, a departure from her synthetic background.

PHD PROJECT : "Design, synthesis, characterization and processing of innovative vitrimers"

Olivia is working on the design, synthesis, and characterization of vitrimers. In this interdisciplinary project she studies the kinetics of small molecule model systems of exchange reactions, synthesizes monomers, polymers, and crosslinkers to be used in novel materials, and characterizes the new materials physical properties.

"My PhD in 1 minute" - Olivia Kool


In 2014, I graduated from Cochin University of Science and Technology with a Bachelor of Technology degree in Electronics and Biomedical Engineering. I joined University of Texas at Dallas to do my Masters of Science degree in Biomedical Engineering in the Spring 2016 batch soon after I realized my inclination towards the field of medical science. After graduating in 2017, I worked as Special Projects Associate in Mayo Clinic, Florida in neuroscience research. It was during this period I was deeply motivated to do a PhD and applied for the Upto Paris PhD Program.

PHD PROJECT : "Functional Ultrasound imaging of BDNF’s cortical functions in pain perception in health and disease"

My PhD project is aimed at studying how brain networks and the functional connectivity are altered during chronic pain conditions such as neuropathic pain and anxiety-depression behaviours associated with it, in mouse models. We are studying this using a breakthrough technology in Neuroimaging called the Functional Ultrasound, which provides a unique real time, portable and deep brain functional imaging technique for awake and even freely moving animals.

"My PhD in 1 minute" - Haritha Koorliyil

Country of origin : India
Hosting Research Unit : Physics & Materials


I am Ravi, from a small town Narnaul near the capital New Delhi India. I completed my BS-MS in Physics from IISER Bhopal. In my MS, I studied the effect of Spin-Orbital Coupling on Non-Centrosymmetric Superconductors. To further explore my interest in condensed matter physics I joined ESPCI as a PhD under UPtoPARIS program.

PHD PROJECT : "Ferroelectricity and superconductivity as competing and cooperative orders"

My PhD project is related coexistence of Ferroelectricity and superconductivity in slightly doped STO. However, not only they tolerate each other, but quantum fluctuations of the ferroelectric order strengthen superconductivity. The aim of this project is to explore this intriguing case of ferroelectric quantum criticality.

"My PhD in 1 minute" - Ravi

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