On 14 April at the Palais des Nations in Geneva, the delegates from 56 member countries and a jury of experts voted for the final winner of the United Nations "UNECE Ideas for Change Award”
At the official ceremony the project Jellyfish Barge developed by the Pnat spin-off leaded by the Georgofilo fellow Stefano Mancuso received 2nd place in the UNECE Ideas for Change Award. Delegates from 56 Member States, together with the International Expert Jury, voted for the best proposals. In addition, the team was awarded a prestigious mentorship opportunity with I3P, the Innovative Enterprise Incubator of Politecnico di Torino (Italy). I3P is one of the main Italian incubators for science and technology-based projects and one of the best at the European level. Thanks to this opportunity, the team will work in close collaboration with business and marketing mentors to expand the presence of the project on the market and to attract the attention of future investors. Jellyfish Barge is a prototype of a floating greenhouse that grows vegetables without using soil,desalinizing sea water, and using solar energy, thus forming a totally autonomous module for the production of vegetables
The JellyFish Barge had been selected by the United Nations Economic Commission for Europe out of 150 proposals from 25 countries.
Besides Professor Mancuso’s project, the finalists were: AEInnova from Spain, Breezometer from Israel, Improved Photovoltaic System -PVT from Armenia, and MEGA from Moldavia.
Stefano Mancuso is the director of International Laboratory of Plant Neurobiology (LINV). Through funding from the Ente Cassa di Risparmio di Firenze, his research group has started up the innovative Pnat, which created a prototype that will be one of the projects presented by the Regione Toscana at Expo 2015.