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The Award

Celebrating the spirit of innovation.

European Inventor Award 2014

The grand setting of the former Imperial Telegraph Office in Berlin, witness to the earliest days of the electronic communications revolution, was also witness to the ninth European Inventor Award on 17 June. Some 500 guests from industry, politics, academia and the patent community gathered to celebrate Europe’s spirit of innovation.

European Inventor Award Highlights - 2014

Benoît Battistelli, President of the European Patent Office, welcomed ministers, ambassadors and dignitaries from all over Europe to Berlin before many weeks of anxious anticipation were ended and the winners of the Award finally announced. For his remarkable “DNA lab on a USB stick”, Professor Christofer Toumazou (UK) won the Research Category. Life-saving scientists Koen Andries (BE) and Jérôme Guillemont (FR) won the Industry category for their medicine to combat the resurgent threat of tuberculosis. The SME category was won by Peter Holme Jensen (DK) and colleagues at Aquaporin for their low energy water ultra-purification membrane.

Already a celebrity, the father of 3D printing, Chuck Hull (US), picked up the Award in the category for non-European countries. Another finalist in this category, Masahiro Hara (JP) and his team who invented the ubiquitous QR code seen from billboards to plane tickets, were the surprise winners of the online public poll – the Popular Prize – with over 5000 votes.

But there wasn’t a dry eye in the house when heroic 94 year-old German inventor Artur Fischer took the stage to receive, with enormous pride, the Award for Lifetime achievement. Fischer’s inventions are legion, from plastic wall plugs to camera flash cubes to children’s toy building kits – he has filed over 500 applications for patents or utility models in his long life. He is the only inventor in the same league as Thomas Edison for the number and diversity of his patents, and the whole audience were rightly on their feet to cheer him!

About the Trophy

Winners of the European Inventor Award are presented with a trophy in the shape of a sail. A lasting symbol of exploration and human ingenuity, the sail recalls how an inventive idea can propel humankind to uncharted shores.

For 2014 the trophy was elegantly fashioned by KPM – the Royal Porcelain Factory in Berlin – which has been designing high quality porcelain ornaments for over 250 years. Renowned the world over, the KPM provided the winners with a memorable souvenir of the Award Ceremony in Germany’s capital.

Innovation TV – enjoy the European Inventor Award on your smart TV

Films about all the Award finalists for 2014, as well as those from last year, can now be enjoyed at home on your smart TV. Download the free app to watch the short films in HD, as well as the live recording of the spectacular Award Ceremony in Berlin from 17 June.