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PATHFINDER initiatives 2004/2005

The topic identification and selection process 2004/2005 resulted in the selection of three complementary research topics, whereas one is new and the other two have been re-selected:

The corresponding NEST PATHFINDER call was published on 10th December 2004 and has its deadline on 13th April 2005.

� Measuring the impossible

Measurement is at the heart of scientific work. Science, business and government are presenting challenges intrinsically more complex, problematic and subject to interpretation. This initiative aims to give an impulse to fundamental advances that will underpin future measurement methods and techniques, by supporting interdisciplinary research and novel investigative methods that could present prospects for advancing the measurement of multidimensional phenomena which are mediated by human interpretation and perception.

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Synthetic Biology

A new "biology revolution" is arising from the convergence of systems biology and engineering, e.g. through the application of engineering approaches to produce and tailor novel artificial systems and devices based on biological building blocks. These systems could foster unprecedented benefits in applications such as health, energy, environment or materials.

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What it means to be human

It is now possible to envisage an integrated understanding of the human mind, linking genetic and biological dimensions to the behavioural and ultimately the societal and cultural. The key question to be addressed is "what features make human cognitive abilities unique, and what are the origins of these features?". Projects will take a multidisciplinary approach, bringing together scientists from disciplines ranging from anthropology, neuroscience, linguistic, biology, genetic, to psychology.

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Topic Identification and Selection Process 2004/2005

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