ETH Board, 28 May 2020

The ETH Board is launching a research news platform. Called Sciena, the platform brings together news from the six institutions of the ETH Domain for the first time. It thus provides a global picture of the latest discoveries made by the two Federal Institutes of Technology and the research institutes PSI, WSL, Empa and Eawag.

The ETH Board is launching the Sciena.ch information platform, the aim of which is to strengthen dialogue between science and society. The portal provides information on the major research projects that are currently in progress and communicates the scientific discoveries made within the ETH Domain, which comprises the two Federal Institutes of Technology in Zurich (ETH Zurich) and Lausanne (EPFL), as well as the four research institutes PSI, WSL, Empa and Eawag. For the first time, all news from these six institutions will be available on a single, shared platform.

From robotics to genetics by way of energy, nanotechnology, the environment and IT security, the ETH Domain conducts research in areas that are vital to Switzerland and also educates the scientific experts of tomorrow. 

“The research carried out within the ETH Domain is hugely important for Switzerland”, says Michael Hengartner, President of the ETH Board. “The major challenges facing our society demand interdisciplinary, complementary approaches. By launching Sciena.ch, our aim is not only to provide a global picture of the advances achieved within the six federal research institutions, but also to encourage collaboration.” The ETH Board can mobilise and bring together some of the finest experts in the country, as it demonstrated on 16 March 2020 when it launched a COVID-19 working group. This group created the framework for the Swiss National COVID-19 Science Task Force, which is currently advising the government on what measures to take in response to the SARS-CoV-2 pandemic.

Each day, Sciena.ch publishes three or four news items related to research or issues affecting education, technological and social innovation as well as national and international science policy. Michael Hengartner emphasises that “the portal offers everyone – from representatives of the media, government and business to the general public – a way to stay up-to-date on the issues that will shape the country’s future.”

News items can be grouped using a keywords system, thereby providing access to news from across the institutions in specific areas, such as sustainability, engineering or even deep learning. To break down any language barriers, all articles are available in German, French and English. Sciena.ch also issues a monthly newsletter containing a selection of the most relevant stories.