Multidisciplinary International School
Nanobiomaterials Engineering


Dr. Cristina Elizetxea Ezeiza

lecture on Saturday, August 26 entitled: "Sustainability in polymer material synthesis and circularity aspects"

PhD. Cristina Elizetxea (29/06/1969): Graduate in Chemical Science in the University of Basque Country (1992) and PhD in Chemistry in the University of Basque Country (2000), she is currently member of the research staff of Processes and Materials Area at Tecnalia’s Industry and Mobility Unit, Since the last two years, she is coordinating the Sustainable and Functional Polymers group. She has more than 20 years research experience in the field of plastic and composite materials mainly oriented to thermoplastic technologies (extrusion, injection, compression) and recycling technologies for both, thermoplastic and thermosetting materials.  She has participated in more than 30 national and international projects, coordinating some of them, with participation of companies and research institutions from all over Europe for EC as well as National funded ones. She is author of more than 30 articles related to composite materials and processes, five patents inventor, advisor of several PhD Thesis. Since the last six years, her main activity is focused in improving composite sustainability and multifunctionality by conventional composite manufacturing processes for both, thermosetting and thermoplastics, materials. Researching in the field of new composite manufacturing technologies mainly addressed to the industrialization of the in-situ polymerization and molding process of anionic APA6, for continuous fiber thermoplastic composites with enhanced functionalities.


Dr. Jens Gaitzsch

lecture on Thursday, June 22 entitled: "Talking Science"

Jens Gaitzsch obtained his Ph.D. in 2013 in the group of Prof. Brigitte Voit at the Leibniz Institute of Polymer Research (IPF) in Dresden. Following a postdoctoral fellowship at University College London from 2013 to 2015 with Prof. Giuseppe Battaglia, he then became an independent researcher at the University of Basel. In Basel, he was associated with the research group of Prof. Wolfgang Meier from 2015 to 2019. During this time in research, his focussed shifted slowly from the self-assembly of amphiphilic block-copolymers to the radical ring-opening polymerisation (RROP) of cyclic ketene acetals. He is currently a young research group leader at IPF with an independent group focusing on RROP to gain functional biodegradable polymers. Besides his research endeavors, he regularly participates in Science Slams in Germany and Switzerland and has also been seen at Famelab competitions. 


Prof. Jean-François Gérard

lecture on Thursday, August 24 entitled: "Bioinspiration for designing polymer-based materials"

Prof. Jean-François Gérard got a PhD in Macromolecular Materials Science in 1985. He is currently Full Professor at INSA Lyon/Université de Lyon in Materials Science Engineering and Polymer Science and develops research activities within the UMR CNRS 5223 ‘Ingénierie des Matériaux Polymères’. He began as Research Scientist at CNRS UMR 5627 ‘Relations Structure-Propriétés des Polymères’. He head the UMR CNRS 5223 Institute from 2002 to 2011. Since the beginning of his career, he dedicates his researches to the design of various polymer-based materials, especially thermoset-based ones. His interests are focused on nanostructured polymers and nanostructuration processes - (nano)microphase separation phenomena from RIPS, hybrid organic-inorganic nanomaterials from introduction of metal oxo-clusters or considering sol-gel chemistries, ionic liquids, nanoparticles and nanocomposites -, interfaces and interphases in blends and composite materials (from nanocomposites to fiber-based composites), coatings and adhesives, etc. Numerous of his researches are done within collaborative projects with Industry. He is the author of about 330 papers in scientific journals, 21 patents, and he gave about 160 invited conferences. He acted as vice-coordinator of NANOFUN-POLY (Nanostructured and Multi-Functional Polymer-Based Nanomaterials and Composites) European Network of Excellence and from 2007, as Vice-President of the European Center for Nanostructured Polymers (ECNP). He has numerous consulting activities and participation in boards, scientific learning societies, such as President of the European Polymer Federation (2016-2017). 


Dr. Rebeca Hernández

lecture on Thursday, August 24 entitled: "Polymer hydrogels: crosslinking strategies, rheological properties and 3D printing"

Rebeca Hernández received her B.S. from the U. Autonoma of Madrid in 2000 and a PhD from the department of Physical Chemistry of U. Complutense of Madrid in 2004. During her Ph.D., carried out at the Institute of Polymer Science and Technology (ICTP-CSIC), she focused on the study of the structure and viscoelastic properties of novel hydrogels based on poly (vinyl alcohol). She was visiting scientist at the Institut Charles Sadron (CNRS, France) in Prof. J. M. Guenet group to learn about fundamentals of polymer gelation and at the North Caroline State University (NCSU, USA) in Prof. Tonelli group to work on cyclodextrin inclusion complexes with polyvinyl alcohol. Then, she entered Prof. Runt´s group as Postdoctoral fellow at the Penn State University (PSU, USA) to work on segmented polyurethanes, employed as blood-contacting materials in biomedical devices. Since 2019 she is the principal investigator of the Nanostructured Polymers and gels group.  In 2011, she was awarded with the `L’Oréal-UNESCO For Women in Science in Spain ́ fellowship that recognizes research of female scientist below 35 years old. In 2021, Rebeca Hernandez received the. “Outstanding Young Researcher in Polymers GEP Award” awarded by the Polymer division (GEP) common to the Spanish Royal Society of Chemistry and Physics (RSEQ, RSEF). Her current research interests are focused on self-assembling polymeric materials and gels as precursor materials for biomedical applications. She has proven expertise on i) the development of polymeric functional materials through chemical modification and polymer gelation where she has developed different methodologies to incorporate nanoparticles into polymer gels and to functionalize hydrogels for chemical and physical crosslinking and ii) the determination of polymer gelation mechanisms and gel structure-properties relationship with special emphasis on rheological characterization.

Prof. José M. Kenny

lecture on Friday, August 25 entitled: "Development, processing and characterization of bio-nano polymer composites"

Prof. José Kenny is Full Professor of Materials Science and Technology at the Department of Civil and Environmental Engineering of the University of Perugia in Terni (Italy). He is also the President of the Board of the European Centre for Nanostructured Polymers.  Prof. Kenny got his PhD at the University of the South in Argentina and since 1993 he is at the University of Perugia where he started and coordinated the Laboratory of Materials Science and Technology in Terni. The main areas of research are focused on the processing of polymers, composites and nanocomposites for applications in several advanced sectors: aerospace, automotive, biomedicine, food packaging, alternative energy and building. Moreover, in the last period, the research of Prof. Kenny has been mainly devoted to biopolymers (biobased and biodegradable), recycling (circular economy) and environmental impact of polymer based materials.  In more than 35 years of academic work, Prof.  Kenny has authored more than 680 scientific publications in indexed international journals (Scopus h=100) related to the processing, characterization and applications of polymers, composites and nanocomposites with more than 35.000 citations. Moreover, Prof. Kenny participates to the Editorial Board of several international scientific journals in the polymer field. Prof. Kenny has coordinated numerous Italian and international scientific, technological and education projects and has been visiting professor at several European and American Universities. He has been President of the European Society for Advanced Materials and Process Engineering (SAMPE) in 2001-2002 and has received the SAMPE Fellow Award in 2011 and the RAICES Award in 2012 granted by the Argentinean Ministry of Science and Technology. During the period 2015-2021, Prof. Kenny was appointed scientific attaché at the Italian Embassy in Argentina.  


Prof. Dr. Klaus Müllen

lecture on Monday, August 28 entitled: "Small or large, 1D or 2D - synthesizing organic electronic"

Klaus Müllen was director at the Max Planck Institute for Polymer Research and is continuing research at the universities of Heidelberg and Cologne. His broad research interests range from new polymer-forming reactions, to the chemistry and physics of single molecules as well as graphenes, dendrimers and biosynthetic hybrids. He published more than 2000 papers. He received many awards, honorary doctorates and honorary professorships and he is member of national and international academies.  From 2008-2009 he served as president of the German Chemical Society (GDCh). In 2013-2014 he was president of the German Association for the Advancement of Science and Medicine.  In 2010 he won an ERC Advanced Grant for his work on nanographenes. He was associate editor of the Journal of the American Chemical Society.


Dr. Jiří Pfleger

lecture on Sunday, August 27 entitled: "Current trends in polymers for electronics and photonics"

Dr. Jiri Pfleger works currently as a head of the Department of Polymers for Electronics and Photonics and a coordinator of the OPTOEL Center in the Institute of Macromolecular Chemistry, Czech Academy of Sciences in Prague. He obtained his Master degree in biophysics in the Charles University in Prague and PhD in physical chemistry in the Czech Academy of Sciences for studies of electrical phenomena in conjugated polymers. His research is focused on optical and electrical properties of conjugated organic materials and nanocomposites with plasmonic nanoparticles for flexible electronics.  In 1987-88 he stayed at the State University of New York at Buffalo, later he worked also in the Hahn-Maitner Institute in Berlin, City University of Hong Kong and Technical University in Lodz, Poland. He is a lecturer in the Charles University and in the Technical University in Prague and member of the scientific boards of these universities. He also worked as a project technical advisor and currently is an evaluation expert for European projects and a consultant for Lallemand SAS in France. He is an author or coauthor of 123 papers in international impacted journals and above 170 contributions to conferences.