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Tech Visionaries in Singapore, Australia dominate MIT Technology Review’s 2016 ‘TR35 Innovators Under 35 Asia’ list

10 Innovators are recognised on the 2016 EmTech Asia, MIT Technology Review’s ‘Innovators Under 35 Asia’ list

 12 November 2015, SINGAPORE – Since 2014, the EmTech Asia conference, in association with MIT Technology Review, receives applications from talented researchers, inventors and entrepreneurs from Southeast Asia, Taiwan, Australia and New Zealand in order to gain recognition as the 10 top young Innovators under the age of 35 in the region. The 10 ‘Innovators Under 35’ are given tribute annually at MIT Technology Review’s EmTech Asia conference, for their contribution in transforming the nature of technology in industries such as biomedicine, computing, communications, energy, materials, web, and transportation.

Emtech Asia received nominations from 8 countries (Singapore, Malaysia, Thailand, Philippines, Indonesia, Vietnam, Australia and New Zealand) to be considered for the 2016 list. Despite the array of worthy applications from across the region, seven exceptional researchers and an inventor based in Singapore, along with two outstanding researchers from Australia were selected. They are:

1. Madhu Bhaskaran, Senior Lecturer and Co-Leader, Functional Materials and Microsystems Research Group, RMIT University, AUSTRALIA. She is recognized for her work in developing transparent, wearable sensor patches that can detect UV radiation poisoning and toxic gases like nitrogen dioxide.
2. Javier Gomez Fernandez, Assistant Professor and Founder Academic Member, Singapore University of Technology and Design, SINGAPORE. He is noted for developing Shrilk, a bioinspired material based on the chemistry and molecular design of the insect cuticle with a strength equivalent to aluminum alloys at half the density. It is made of silk proteins and waste material from the fishing industry and is considered a material that could change the world paving the way for sustainable manufacturing.
3. Siau Chen Chian, Assistant Professor, Department of Civil and Environmental Engineering, National University of Singapore, SINGAPORE. He receives the award for his research on earthquake engineering, particularly in catastrophe modelling and lifeline infrastructure damage mitigation.
4. Majid Ebrahimi Warkiani, Lecturer, School of Mechanical and Manufacturing Engineering, University of New South Wales, AUSTRALIA. He was recognised for his work in the development of advanced microfluidics systems for separation of rare cells, e.g., circulating tumour cells, from blood for early cancer diagnosis.
5. Grace Leslie, Postdoctoral Fellow, Singapore University of Technology and Design / MIT Media Lab, SINGAPORE. Grace was nominated for her work developing music neurofeedback systems for creative and therapeutic applications.
6. Yue Wan, GIS Fellow, Genome Institute of Singapore, Agency for Science, Technology and Research (A*STAR), SINGAPORE. She is recognized for a novel technology that allows to map the shapes of RNA molecules at high speed.
7. Raye Chen-Hua Yeow, Assistant Professor, Department of Biomedical Engineering, National University of Singapore, SINGAPORE. He is recognized for his work in soft wearable robotics, particularly for enhancing healthcare quality and productivity.
8. Jia Hao Cheong, Scientist, Institute of Microelectronics, Agency for Science, Technology and Research (A*STAR) SINGAPORE. Jia Hao has developed an inductively powered, implantable, blood flow sensor microsystem for real-time monitoring of vascular grafts. This can aid in the early detection of graft failure so as to enable timely intervention.
9. Joseph Fitzsimons, Assistant Professor, Singapore University of Technology and Design & Research Assistant Professor, Centre for Quantum Technologies, National University of Singapore, SINGAPORE. Joseph researches the use of quantum mechanics to enhance the security of networked computation.
10. Pulkit Jaiswal, Founder & CEO, Swarmx, SINGAPORE. Pulkit is recognized for his work in the field of unmanned aerial vehicles or drones. He founded a company, SwarmX, which aims to build fully autonomous drone systems.

The 10 honourees will give elevator pitches about their work at EmTech Asia which will be held 26-27 January 2016 in Singapore. These pitches typically result in further publicity for their work, along with investment opportunities, as those that attend EmTech represent a wide cross section of the business, research and technology communities.

The 10 also automatically qualify for consideration on the global MIT Technology Review magazine '35 Innovators Under 35 List' (TR35). MIT Technology Review will showcase these 35 innovators in the September/October 2016 issue. (Ref In 2015, two of the Asia-Pacific honourees, Benjamin Tee and Rikky Muller made it into the global list.

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Illka Gobius


M: +65 9769 8370



  1. Media are welcome to register attendance to EmTech Asia by applying for accreditation
  2. IMAGES and Biographies: Low resolution images and biographies/synopses of the finalists may be downloaded at the website. Refer to for more information.
  3. The MIT Technology Review’s TR35 nominations were judged this year by the following jury panel:
  • Wong Chia Woan, Director, Research Administration, Institute of Materials Research and Engineering, Agency for Science Technology and Research (A*STAR)
  • Benjamin Tee, Singapore-Stanford Global Biodesign Innovation Fellow, Agency for Science Technology and Research (A*STAR)
  • Juliana Chan, Editor-In-Chief, Asian Scientist Magazine
  • Rikky Muller, CTO and Cofounder, Cortera Neurotechnologies
  • Beh Kian Teik, International Director, Economic Development Board
  • Calvin Chu, Partner, Eden Strategy Institute
  • Stephen Wise, Director, Elixir Services
  • Bernard Nee, Assistant Chief Executive, Energy Market Authority
  • Vincent Soh, Specialist - Energy Planning, Energy Market Authority
  • Glen Francis, CIO, Global Logistic Properties
  • Vinnie Lauria, Founding Partner, Golden Gate Ventures
  • Parin Mehta, Head of Business Development and Strategic Partnerships, Google
  • Brian Bergstein, Deputy Editor, MIT Technology Review
  • Mohan Kankanhalli, Vice Provost (Graduate Education) & Professor, School of Computing, National University of Singapore
  • Chester Drum, Assistant Professor, Department of Medicine, Yong Loo Lin School of Medicine, National University of Singapore
  • Martin Dunn, Associate Provost, Research, Singapore University of Technology & Design (SUTD)
  • Puneet Pushkarna, General Partner, Solmark
  • Dash Dhakshinamoorthy, Founder,
  • Bill Liu, Chairman & Managing Partner, Stream Global Pte Ltd
  • Anton Middelberg, Pro Vice-Chancellor (Research and International), The University of Queensland
  • Tan Bien Kiat, Founder / Managing Director, Titan Capital
  • Chua Kee Lock, Group President & CEO, Vertex Venture Holdings Ltd

About TR35

Since 1999, MIT Technology Review has identified the top young innovators under the age of 35 who receive the TR35 Award at EmTech. TR35 nominees are recognized annually for their contribution in transforming the nature of technology in industries such as biotechnology, energy, medicine, computing, transportation and the web. Past global TR35 winners include Facebook’s Mark Zuckerberg, Google’s Sergey Brin and Larry Page, Tumblr’s David Karp and Spotify’s Daniel Ek among others.

About EmTech Asia

EmTech Asia is where technology, business, and culture converge. It is the showcase for emerging technologies with the greatest potential to change our lives. It is an access point to the most innovative people and companies in the world. Most of all, it is a place of inspiration — an opportunity to glimpse the future and begin to understand the technologies that matter and how they will change the face of business and drive the new global economy.

EmTech Asia is organized by MIT Technology Review and Koelnmesse. The host partner is the Infocomm Development Authority of Singapore (iDA). The event is supported by the Singapore-MIT Alliance for Research and Technology (SMART) and MIT Sloan Executive Education. Sponsors include L’Oréal, MIT Professional Education and The Stakeholder Company; CNBC is the official broadcast partner.

About MIT Technology Review

MIT Technology Review (, which is wholly owned by MIT, creates award-winning technology-related editorial content on a variety of platforms for an audience of millions of business leaders, innovators, and thought leaders, in six languages and in 147 countries. At readers access daily news and analysis, and the award-winning MIT Technology Review magazine has set the standard for technology publications since 1899. In addition to producing engaging live events, the company manages the global entrepreneurial organization MIT Enterprise Forum.


David Sweeney

T: +1 617-475-8018

About Koelnmesse

Koelnmesse Pte Ltd is one of the world's largest trade fair companies. Its more than 70 trade fairs and exhibitions have the broadest international scope in the industry, as 60 percent of the exhibitors and 40 percent of the visitors come from outside Germany. The Koelnmesse events include the leading global trade fairs for 25 sectors, such as Imm cologne, Anuga, IDS, INTERMOT, Interzum Cologne, Photokina, 

Gamescom and the International Hardware Fair Cologne. Koelnmesse is MIT Technology Review’s local partner for EmTech Asia, EmTech Hong Kong and TR35 Asia.

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