The International Science Youth Forum (ISYF) is a prestigious science enrichment programme for top research students from all over the globe, hosted by Hwa Chong Institution. This year, the ISYF Student Organising Committee comprises all the members of the school’s Students’ Science Research Club (SSRC). The delegates of ISYF will gain the opportunity to participate in a multitude of exciting and meaningful activities, which include intellectual discourse with eminent scientists, technopreneurs, medical professionals and government officers who utilise technology and big data to make decisions, as well as networking with peers through collaborative projects and cultural sharings.
Some of the highlights of this year's forum include the Team Project Challenge, Cultural Sharing, Student Project Exhibition, Meet-the-STEM Changemaker sessions and the ISYFdigital Keynote with Professor Stuart Parkin (Millennium Technology Prize 2014). ISYFdigital 2022 hopes to bring together and enthuse young scientific minds to connect through their shared passion, widen their exposure to careers in science, and deepen their understanding of science’s role in society.
It is my privilege and honour here to welcome all delegates to the 14th International Science Youth Forum Digital @ Singapore (ISYFdigital 2022).
2022 heralds a new beginning for the world, as the global community continues to discover new paths in meeting the challenges of the pandemic. We rejoice over the breakthroughs in medical science, with vaccines and treatments available to combat this resilient virus. Yet, we are heartened that scientists around the world remain united in purpose and steadfast in their will to find new solutions. I have no doubt that you are similarly inspired by these developments to refine your skills and acquire knowledge from exciting fields. Though ISYFdigital 2022 remains an online event, we are energized by the roaring success in the 2021 edition, where participants have left positive feedback and their hopes of an even better Forum in 2022. I am confident that you will likewise benefit immensely from the sharing by esteemed scientists and your peers.
Indeed, what should you do after acquiring all this knowledge? This year’s theme “Sparking Innovation, Igniting Collaboration” shines the way for you. Individually, one’s influence is limited, whether physically or intellectually. But through rigorous discourse and openness to share and collaborate with like-minded peers, we have the impetus to overcome stubborn obstacles collectively and approach new frontiers. From the affordances of online technology, you can form a cohesive scholarly community at ISYF and research or experiment on common areas of interest. I encourage you to stay in touch with one another and build on this community of interest even after ISYF. Let me share a recent piece of research from Nanyang Technological University President Professor Subra Suresh and his team, who combined sunflower pollen with printer toner to develop a paper-like material that is able to fold itself into new shapes in response to environmental humidity. They discovered that by using commercially available equipment, the printed pollen paper can fold into various 3D configurations, which can become self-folding envelopes, boxers and food containers. These naturally renewable resources to develop new-generation eco-friendly materials are remarkably in line with the broader NTU 2025 vision to develop environmentally sustainable solutions for the world. The collaboration was achieved through the endeavour of researchers from materials science and engineering, mechanical and aerospace engineering, and chemical and biomedical engineering. Innovative research does not occur in silos, but flourishes through the joint efforts from various fields.
ISYF remains committed to nurturing our youth and the next generation of research scientists. We look forward to seeing each and every one of you applying your scientific knowledge and innovation to make our lives better.
Professor Phua Kok Khoo
Founding Director Emeritus
Institute of Advanced Studies
Nanyang Technological University
A very warm welcome to all participants of the International Science Youth Forum (ISYF) 2022.
Since its inception 14 years ago, HCI remains dedicated to the ISYF mission of providing a platform for top research students to be enlivened by the experiences of eminent scientists and inspiring Science, Technology, Engineering and Mathematics (STEM) changemakers and emboldened to chart their own fulfilling journeys in Science. This year’s theme “Sparking Innovation, Igniting Collaboration” acknowledges the new frontiers conquered and the multiple solutions offered as a result of the extensive collaboration amongst the scientific community. In particular, COVID-19 necessitated and brought to the foreground the importance of collaboration between scientists and non-scientists across different disciplines, as vaccines were deployed in record time to mitigate this pressing issue and bring hope to families and communities. In the same vein, pressing global challenges including the climate emergency, food security, biodiversity loss and future global health crises will all require cross-discipline and multi-faceted approaches.
The global collaboration that ensued from the COVID-19 pandemic has inspired renewed confidence and greater trust in scientists as essential actors in solving major challenges. Practitioners of seemingly disparate disciplines are coming together and looking beyond the guardrails of traditional fields to increasingly define themselves as interdisciplinary – an extraordinary collaboration that transcends geography and hierarchy to secure the health and future of peoples everywhere. This is indeed a salient reminder of the great potential that can be harnessed from science and technology, as well as an affirmation of the aspirational ideals that have shaped scientific discourse and practice hitherto. In such an exciting atmosphere where innovation is encouraged and collaboration ignited, I hope that you will likewise, be energised by the rich discourse with like-minded and enthusiastic peers as well as illuminating life stories shared by illustrious changemakers and scientists.
Wishing you an enlightening and engaging time at ISYFdigital 2022!
Mr Pang Choon How
Hwa Chong Institution
“Gathering delegates, educators and eminent scientists from all over the world, ISYFdigital 2022 promises to continue inspiring passion for learning.”
Low Jeen Liang and Wu Kexin, Student Co‑Chairpersons