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Andrew Bastawrous 

Dr Andrew Bastawrous is an eye surgeon, public health doctor and Co-founder of Peek. Peek is a social enterprise bringing eye care services to some of the world's most challenging locations. Bastawrous is a research fellow at the International Centre for Eye Health. In 2011, he was awarded a Medical Research Council (MRC) and Fight for Sight Fellowship to undertake the first longitudinal population-based study (follow-up study) of eye disease in Africa and the challenges he faced inspired the idea of a smartphone-based ophthalmic tool. Andrew was awarded the MRC Max Perutz Science writing Award in 2012 and was a 2016 Rolex Awards for Enterprise laureate.

Ann Makosinski

Ann Makosinski is currently a second year English Literature student at University of British Columbia. She is the inventor of “Hollow Flashlight”, a flashlight that uses the heat from the human hand to light. Her invention has been recognized with several awards including the Canada-Wide Science Fair and the Google Science Fair in 2013 along with several awards at the 2014 Intel International Science and Engineering Fair.  She also created the eDrink, a mug that converts heat from the hot drink into an electric current to charge phones. In 2014, she was named one of TIME magazine’s 30 Under 30 and in 2017, she was named one of Forbes 30 under 30.

Art Jameel

Art Jameel is a not-for-profit organisation that supports artists and creative communities. Current initiatives include running heritage institutes and restoration programmes, plus a broad range of arts and educational initiatives for all ages. The organisation’s programmes foster the role of the arts in building open, connected communities; at a time of flux and dramatic societal shifts, this role is understood as more crucial than ever.

Art Jameel’s model is collaborative: major institutional partners include the Victoria & Albert Museum, the Prince’s School of Traditional Arts and the Metropolitan Museum of Art; locally, the organisation works with individuals and organisations to develop innovative programming that embraces both ancient and new technologies, and encourages entrepreneurship and the development of cultural networks. 

Brian James

Brian James works at KAUST Health, Safety and Environment. He has been bird watching for the past 30 years. He worked as a teacher in Tanzania and soon started to take a keen interest in identifying the birds there. Since then he has watched birds throughout the world and has a life list of around 5200 species.

Brian came to KAUST when it first opened and worked as a teacher in the Primary School until 2016 when he retired. He is now working for the HSE department as the Biodiversity Coordinator.

His blog  reports on the birds seen at KAUST, He regularly organises Guided Bird Walks for community members and visitors. He has travelled widely within Saudi Arabia watching birds and recorded almost 400 species within the country.

Carlos Duarte

Professor Carlos M. Duarte holds the Tarek Ahmed JuffaliChair in Marine Biology with the Red Sea Research Center (RSRC) at KAUST. Duarte received his Ph.D. from McGill University, Canada, in 1987. His research focuses on understanding the effects of global change, including climate change as well as other global-scale impacts of human activity, in marine ecosystems, which he has studied across the world. Duarte has conducted over 15 polar expeditions in Antarctica and the Arctic.

Carolina Eyck

German-Sorbian musician and composer Carolina Eyck is one of the world’s foremost Theremin virtuoso. As a soloist and chamber musician she has given concerts worldwide and collaborated with several artists. In 2012, Carolina played the Theremin solo at the world premiere of the two symphonies “Mesopotamia” and “Universe” by Fazil Say. The composer Kalevi Aho dedicated a Theremin concert to Carolina.  Together with the pianist and composer Christopher Tarnow, she is forming a duo since 2013. In 2016 Carolina Eyck and American Contemporary Music Ensemble (ACME) released the "Fantasias for Theremin and String Quartet", composed by her.

She has conducted workshops, lectures and master classes worldwide. In 2006, she published the first extensive Theremin method book entitled “The Art of Playing the Theremin”. Since 2010 she is the artistic director of the Theremin Summer Academy in Colmar (France) and the Theremin Spring Academy in Leipzig (since 2013).

Deanna LaCoste

Deanna Lacoste is Assistant Professor of Mechanical Engineering at KAUST.

Professor Lacoste‘s research interests are in plasma-assisted combustion and flame dynamics, with special emphasis on control of thermoacoustic instabilities by non-equilibrium plasma discharges. She is also interested in detonation and development of optical diagnostics for combustion and electrical discharges.

Dominique Sciamma

Dominique Sciamma is the Managing Director at Strate School of Design in France since 2013 and holds two Master Degree; in Computer Sciences and in Mathematics.

After an eclectic and thorough career within international companies, Dominique started working for Strate in 2002 by creating its Multimedia Department. Prior to this, he participated in the production of CD-ROMs and video games, Corporate websites, or Communication comics. As a software designer, he is the author of Rexpublisher (1999), a CMS tool. He has also created XILOG (1986); the first AI language marketed by Bull, the French Computer systems flagship company.

Also, Dominique created and directed the economics newspaper La Tribune’s digital strategy as its Electronic Edition Director, defined EDS France’s Multimedia strategy, and created a consultancy team devoted to “very complex” problems solving. As an expert in AI, he spent 2 years in Singapore between 1989 and 1991, where he headed the Bull Far East AI Department.

Jesper Tegner

Jesper Tegner is a Professor in Bioscience and Computer Science at KAUST and an Adjunct Chaired Strategic Professor of Computational Medicine at Karolinska Institutet. He obtained the rank of chaired full professor 4.5 years after his PhD. He holds three separate undergraduate degrees with majors in MedSchool, Mathematics, and Philosophy respectively. Next he did two years postgraduate education in pure and applied mathematics, while doing an experimental Ph.D./M.D. degree in Medicine. He was a Visiting Scientist as a Wennergren and Alfred P Sloan Fellow (USA, 1998-2001) while holding a position as an Assistant Professor of Computer Science 1998-2002 at Royal Institute of Technology.

John Tannaci

John Tannaci, Director, KAUST Research Operations


Julian Bleecker

Julian Bleecker is a designer, technologist and researcher at the Near Future Laboratory. He investigates emerging social practices and networked interaction rituals. His focus is on hands-on design, physical construction, prototyping, observation, prop-making and designed science fictions as a way to raise questions, tune in weak signals, reveal hidden insights and yield innovations that lead to design that makes the world a more habitable, playful place.


Marie-Laure Boulot

Marie-Laure Boulot is the Enrichment Office director at King Abdullah University of Science and Technology (KAUST). She sets strategies, oversees program development and positions KAUST's enrichment programs in Saudi Arabia and in the international landscape. She graduated from Paris Dauphine University where she studied finances and marketing. Marie-Laure joined KAUST as a founding staff member in 2009. Starting with the inaugural 2010 Winter Enrichment Program, Marie-Laure has successfully spearheaded the development and expansion of the University's enrichment programs that expand the minds of not only students but also faculty, staff and community members and in-Kingdom guests.

Sam Cannarozzi

Educated in the art scene in the United States but especially in France and in Europe, Sam Cannarozzi fell in love with storytelling thirty years ago during the Festival “Storytellers of the World” organised by the House of the Cultures of the World from Paris. He then immersed himself in this artistic practise by inventing his own gestural, visual, plastic and of course oral lyrics.

He has given these creations everywhere in France, in ten or so European countries as well as in West Africa (Mali, Senegal, Burkina Faso, Niger, Ivory Coast), from festival to cultural centre, from museum to library… If there is a constant theme in these performances, it is an opening towards all countries, all cultures, and a complete and sensory approach to story.

Samuel West

Dr. Samuel West is a licensed clinical psychologist. He received his PhD in Organizational Psychology from Lund University, Sweden with his dissertation entitled “Playing at Work: Organizational Play as a Facilitator of Creativity”. He works at SUPERLAB, which aims at developing and refining products, services and organizations through research. West is popular for his talk: Learning from failure: lessons from the Museum of Failure. He also conducts workshops that focus on improving the ability to learn from failure and on building a climate of psychological safety among teams necessary for innovation.

Sigurdur Thoroddsen

Sigurdur Thoroddsen is Professor of Mechanical Engineering at KAUST.

Professor Thoroddsen's research work has appeared in 95 journal publications and over 60 proceedings, reports and abstracts. His work is in the area of experimental fluid mechanics, focusing on the use of ultra-high-speed video imaging to study the dynamics of free-surface flows and Tomo-PIV studies in turbulence. This includes the coalescence and breakup of drops and bubbles, splashing and spray formation, as well as the dynamics of fine jets of relevance to inkjet printers.

He is also interested in coating flows, the dynamics of granular media, laser-produced cavitation dynamics and the spinning of nanofibers from electrified drops.


Wendy Murphy

Wendy Marcinkus Murphy, Ph.D. is an Associate Professor of Management at Babson College where she teaches organizational behavior for undergraduates and managing talent in the MBA program. Her research is at the intersection of careers, mentoring, and work-life issues, with particular attention to nontraditional developmental relationships and learning.

Murphy has published her work in a range of journals, such as Human Resource Management, Gender in Management, Journal of Management, and the Journal of Vocational Behavior, among others. Her book with Dr. Kathy Kram, Strategic Relationships at Work: Creating Your Circle of Mentors, Sponsors, and Peers for Success in Business and Life, bridges mentoring scholarship and practice. In 2014, she was recognized by Poets & Quants as one of the “40 Most Outstanding B-School Profs Under 40 in the World.”