At this year’s Cheltenham Science Festival (6-11 June) 31 scientists from across the globe battled in three semi-finals for nine places in the International Final.
This year’s contestants came from: Australia, Azerbaijan, Brazil, Bulgaria, Cyprus, Czech Republic, Egypt, France, Germany, Greece, Hong Kong, India, Ireland, Italy, Korea, Kazakhstan, Latvia/Estonia, Malaysia, Malta, Mauritius, Netherlands, Poland, Portugal, Qatar, South Africa, Spain, Switzerland, Thailand, Uganda, UK, and Vietnam.
The Czech FameLab winner Tereza Mašínová gave a great performance in the 2nd semi-final but unfortunately did not make it to the grand final. You can watch her performance in the video above (starting at 1:09:04).
The 2017 FameLab International final was held in front of a live audience of hundreds at the Parabola Arts Centre at Cheltenham Science Festival. The judges included Ellen Stofan (former Chief Scientist at NASA), Jim Al-Khalili (theoretical physicist, author and broadcaster) and Tim Slingsby (Director of Skills and Education at Lloyd’s Register Foundation).
Tshiamo Legoale, a 27-year old Geologist from South Africa, successfully competed against 31 science communicators from across the world and was crowned the 2017 FameLab International Champion and Audience Vote Winner. Tshiamo works for the national mineral research organisation Mintek. In her winning talk on phytomining, she described how plants can absorb specific metals from the environment into their tissues and how this process can be used to literally ‘harvest’ gold from wheat.
Second place was awarded to two runner-ups: Nicole Phoebe Tanner (The Chinese University of Hong Kong) representing Hong Kong, and Nural Cokcetin (University of Sydney) representing Australia.