Nokia announces its 2016 Bell Labs Prize winners


Nokia announces the winners of its third annual Bell Labs Prize, all of whom demonstrated game-changing ideas in the fields of science, technology, engineering or mathematics.

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  • Top innovators demonstrate 'Future X' technology ideas to improve the human experience
  • Winners to earn up to $175,000 in cash prizes and an opportunity to collaborate with world-renowned Nokia Bell Labs researchers

This year's Prize competition attracted more than 250 proposals from 41 countries, which described innovations in Future X network, system, platform or device technologies that have the potential to be an order of magnitude (10x) better than the state of the art today.

Proposals were narrowed down to seven teams of finalists who presented their ideas to a group of industry luminaries in the final judging event last week.

The top three prize winners:

  • First place prize ($100,000) was awarded to the team of Sungwon Chung, Research Associate; Hossein Hashemi, Professor; and Hooman Abediasl, PhD candidate; all with the Department of Electrical Engineering, University of Southern California, for their Large-Scale Plasmonic Optical Phased Array - an architectural innovation for nanodevices.        
  • Second place prize ($50,000) was awarded to Elad Hazan, Professor of Computer Science at Princeton University, for Linear Learning for Deep Insight.
  • Third place prize ($25,000) was awarded to the team of Apostolos Georgiadis, Associate Professor at Heriot-Watt University, Edinburgh, Scotland; Emmanouil Tentzeris, Ken Byers Professor at the School of Electrical & Computer Engineering, Georgia Tech; and George Goussetis, Professor at Heriot-Watt University, for their 3D/Inkjet Printed Millimeter Wave Systems.

Marcus Weldon, President of Nokia Bell Labs & CTO, said: "We are delighted to recognize this year's Prize winners and their brilliant ideas. The winners embody the essence of Bell Labs and the Bell Labs Prize - solving the great challenges facing humankind in the coming 10 years, with disruptive solutions that 'think differently.'

"We received an impressive variety of innovative proposals - from machine learning and computing technologies, to breakthroughs in optics, to new kinds of integrated circuits and component technologies, and novel wireless networking techniques and approaches. We look forward to collaborating with these leading innovators to help turn these ideas into reality."


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Research activities at Bell Labs Cambridge currently focus on materials science, pervasive systems, and computational social science.

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