science awards ceremony
© Fondation Bettencourt Schueller
For over 30 years, the Bettencourt Schueller Foundation has been supporting life science researchers at key moments in their career. Last year on the 10th December, for the first time in history, the Foundation combined all their science awards into one evening event. Over 300 people attended the event held in the brand new André and Liliane Bettencourt auditorium at the Institut de France in Paris.
Video of the highlights from the event
Preparation of the event required several months work. Starting in June, the Foundation called upon Agent Majeur to take on the challenge of rewarding 19 scientists in less that 1h30 – giving each of them a chance to present their research, of course. The scope of our project was vast: initial event development, graphic design, set design, brochures, interactive screens, videos, photography and coaching in public speaking. All in all an immense project!
In terms of set design, we wanted to respect the identity of the Auditorium and to play to its strengths: majestic height and natural stone walls. For a warm and pleasant atmosphere, we opted for a large screen that plunged over the stage and, at the human scale, two smaller screens containing information about the grantees or close-up shots of the event. We also managed the set design for the cocktail spaces: buffets, tables, touchscreens and more.
Set design for the cocktail evening © Fondation Bettencourt Schueller
Mathematically, to give each scientist the opportunity to speak at such a short ceremony, time was of the essence. For example, the 14 young researcher grantees (“prix jeunes chercheurs”) were allocated one minute each to talk about their research. Just enough to whet the audiences appetite to entice them to check out touchscreens available during the cocktail where they could find out more about each researcher and their laboratory.
To prepare the researchers ahead of the ceremony, our team coached them at a distance via Skype, telephone and e-mail. Whilst some were on the other side of France, the rest were spread across the world as far as Israel and the USA. The day before the event, they attended a hands-on coaching session to gain in confidence and ability. Then on the day of the event, we supported the grantees throughout the rehearsal to help them familiarise themselves with the stage and avoid any technical problems.
Brochure presenting the 2018 awardees
For this event, our teams produced a total of nine videos. During the ceremony, several of them were screened including a presentation of the Foundation and some of the researchers. Others were available on the touch screens. Check a selection of videos below:
Veit Hornung was granted the Liliane Bettencourt award for life sciences 2018 (“prix Liliane Bettencourt pour les sciences du vivant”). His research aims to improve our understanding of the innate immune system.
To find out more about science sponsorship by the Bettencourt Schuller Foundation, check out this video: