Bell Labs calls for universities to vie for US$100k prize

10 Jul 2014

Bell Labs has pledged a US$100,000 donation to universities or colleges whose students have an innovative idea to ‘change the game’ in ICT as part of the annual Bell Labs Prize competition and is urging Irish institutions to take part.

Bell Labs will offer a US$100,000 donation to the accredited university or institution of higher learning in which the overall winner of the Bell Labs Prize is enrolled at the time of his or her application.

The donation will be directed to a selected professor of the university or institution whose areas of research and study are foundational to the subject matter of the winning application.

In May, Bell Labs introduced the Bell Labs Prize, a competition that will give any researcher, in participating countries around the globe, the opportunity to collaborate with world-renowned Bell Labs researchers.

The Bell Labs Prize winners will take home cash awards worth as much as $100,000, and the chance to further develop their ideas at Bell Labs.

The call for entries closes on 15 July and the competition will be judged by a global panel of industry luminaries, university professors and major corporations.


“We are excited by tremendous interest shown so far in the Bell Labs Prize and the quality of the applications that we are seeing,” said Marcus Weldon, president of Bell Labs and CTO of Alcatel-Lucent.

“So we have decided to further enhance the impact on the next generation of innovators and recognise the larger research community with an additional award for the originating university that sponsored the work of the winning applicant.

“This, together with our expansion of Bell Labs with new antenna sites in research ‘hotbeds’ is all part of our continuing reconnection of Bell Labs to the next great generation of innovators.”

In addition to unveiling the Bell Labs Prize, in recent months Bell Labs also unveiled its plans to open at least three new ‘antenna’ locations. These are designed to be smaller and more nimble research spaces that are actively engaged in the global Bell Labs network.

In May, Bell Labs announced the first location, an office led by Danny Raz, a prominent Israeli computer scientist near Tel-Aviv, Israel, with a specific focus on cloud networking research. This team is working closely with Alcatel-Lucent’s CloudBand team to undertake cutting-edge research into how to provide highly distributed, heterogeneous cloud services with guaranteed security, reliability and performance.

Later this month, Bell Labs will open a new location in Europe to expand its collaboration with leading universities and technology innovators in another technology domain.

John Kennedy is a journalist who served as editor of Silicon Republic for 17 years