Call 2019

Selected projects

Developing Human Rights Benchmarks for the Financial Service Industry –Testing indicators from an Australian project in Switzerland

Business and Economics

Financial service providers face a range of stakeholder expectations regarding their social responsibilities including, increasingly, the impacts their actions have on people’s basic human rights, such a privacy, non-discrimination and economic security. Developing human rights benchmarks specific to the financial service industry provides an opportunity to change culture and practices within financial services by providing an objective proxy of human rights performance.

This collaboration will explore the potential for extending the Financial Services Human Rights Benchmark (FSHRB) developed at the Sydney Law School by Dr. Kym Sheehan and Prof. David Kinley into Europe. Together with Dr. Dorothée Baumann-Pauly (Geneva Center for Business and Human Rights) we plan to review, refine, and then test the current benchmark methodology on a sample of financial services entities listed on the SIX Swiss Stock Exchange.

projects
Participants
David Kinley
University of Sydney
Dorothee Baumannn-Pauly
University of Geneva

Developing Shared Evaluation Frameworks for Digital Innovation in Culturally-Effective, Patient-Oriented Healthcare Translation and Communication: Australia and Switzerland

Digital Studies
Health
Languages

Effective health translation and communication strategies among multicultural populations lie at the heart of efforts to combat physical and mental diseases in multicultural societies like Australia and Switzerland. There is a persistent lack of standardised criteria and benchmarks for the development and evaluation of healthcare and medical translation resources and computerised translation systems. The lack of international standards and guidelines have impeded the effective adoption and implementation of health translation resources and technologies in healthcare research and clinical settings. Our project represents a first attempt to tackle this persistent, costly issue, which has become increasingly urgent in multicultural Australia and the refugee crisis in European countries like Switzerland. A key component of this project is to explore opportunities of the joint development of healthcare translation resources and communication technologies for Australian aboriginal communities.

projects
Participants
Meng Ji
University of Sydney
Pierrete Bouillon
University of Geneva

Novel stochastic numerical methods for complex multiscale dynamical systems with applications in microbiology

Mathematics

The opportunistic pathogen bacteria Pseudomonas aeruginosa is a major cause of nosocomial infections and is responsible for dramatic complications in immunocompromised people. A dramatic side effect of the bacteria defense against metals, such as Zinc, is a resistance of the bacteria to antibiotics, as discovered and studied by the group of investigator Perron at UNIGE. Indeed, Zinc is an element commonly present in the environment as a pollutant, in medical devices (catheters) in certain human secretions or during phagocytosis. Understanding this phenomenon with a mathematical model of bacteria behavior in patients is a great challenge, which will help the design of efficient medical treatments and dosages against this pathogen.

Despite multiscale stochastic differential equations naturally arising as mathematical models, their efficient and reliable numerical study remains an open problem and it represents a key target of this project.

projects
Participants
Georg Gottwald
University of Sydney
Gilles Vilmart
University of Geneva

Out-of-sample prediction estimation to accurately predict response to immunotherapy drugs in metastatic melanoma

Statistics
Medicine

Anti-PD1 based immunotherapy has revolutionised cancer treatment in recent years. These drugs have been approved for many cancer types, and are now front-line treatment for metastatic melanoma, which has the highest response rate of any cancer type. Despite this, approximately half of metastatic melanoma patients fail to respond to therapy. In addition these treatments are expensive and can cause toxicity. Valid and accurate assessment of immunotherapy response prediction is essential for clinical decision making but has still remained a serious challenge.

This project aims to take comprehensive approach where both clinicopathological features, and, genomics expression variables are explored simultaneously to derive the most accurate prediction of response to immunotherapy treatment. The data analytics methods that will be used (with potential methodology extension) will deal with the “large p, small n” challenge that necessarily also induce computational complexity.

projects
Participants
Serigne Lo
University of Sydney
Maria-Pia Victoria-Feser
University of Geneva

Toward a more robust and comprehensive energy performance certificate to promote building sustainability

Earth and Environment

Improving building performance is key tackling the challenges of climate change, considering that they account for 40% of the global energy consumption. Sustainability labels and Energy Performance Certificate (EPC), notably CECB (CH) and NatHERS (AU), aim to address this. However, EPCs certify the design and rely on simulations and assumptions regarding the buildings’ construction and operation.

Previous studies highlighted the gap between expectations set by energy labels and reality, reflected in higher energy bills and environmental impacts, driven particularly by modelling uncertainty in indoor temperature and ventilation rate. More research is needed to understand how to integrate these into EPC processes. The project aims to understand the impacts of indoor temperature and ventilation rate through a complementary approach using big data analysis and experiments with human participants. These two perspectives will enable the identification of improvements to the EPC methodology.

projects
Participants
Arianna Brambilla
University of Sydney
Prof. Martin Patel
University of Geneva