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SDG Impact Awards

For the first time, the Faculty of Business, Economics and Informatics honored scholarly work at the Bachelor's, Master's, and Doctoral levels that contributes science to the achievement of the UN Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs)* and thus has an impact on society, the environment, and the economy. The awards were presented at the Faculty's graduation ceremony of 2022.

Impressions of the award night 
Nominations 2022/23

AWARDED THESES 2022

PhD level: «Finance in the Climate Crisis: Preferences, Policies», and Prospects by Stefano Ramelli

Presidential elections of Trump and Biden, climate strikes and the launch of a label for low-carbon investment funds – many different political and social events have occurred in recent years. In his doctoral thesis, Stefano Ramelli examined, how financial markets react to these events in the short and long term in the context of the climate crisis.

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Using data from 3,000 publicly traded U.S. companies, he analyzed the impact of Donald Trump‘s election and his announcement to withdraw from the Paris Climate Agreement. Surprisingly, Ramelli was able to show how long-term oriented institutional investors anticipated even at that point a later shift towards a more ambitious climate policy. Consequently, already in the aftermath of the Trump election, they invested in climate-responsible stocks. After the election of Joe Biden and his pledge to support a Green New Deal, that decision proved particularly wise. Using data from 27 European

countries, Stefano Ramelli furthermore highlighted the effects of climate strikes on investors and worked out that environmental behavior has a significant impact on firm value. Finally, he analyzed the introduction of a low-carbon mutual fund label. Mutual funds receiving that label indeed received positive responses from the market. At the same time, Ramelli showed that these funds are less diversified and therefore potentially riskier.

 

 

 

Master's level

Stefano Ramelli

With his outstanding dissertation «Finance in the Climate Crisis: Preferences, Policies, and Prospects», Stefano Ramelli is making a crucial contribution to the implementation of the Sustainable Development Goals SDG 7 «Affordable and Clean Energy» and SDG 13 «Climate Action».

Bachelor's level

Stefano Ramelli

With his outstanding dissertation «Finance in the Climate Crisis: Preferences, Policies, and Prospects», Stefano Ramelli is making a crucial contribution to the implementation of the Sustainable Development Goals SDG 7 «Affordable and Clean Energy» and SDG 13 «Climate Action».

Master's level: «Automated counting and allocation of pollen in the hive» by Anna Jancso

Honeybees are one of the most important pollinators in our world and are therefore vital to biodiversity and economy. Over the past decades, bee populations have been dwindling. Although many causes are known, the exact impact of each cause is still unclear. In her Master’s thesis, Anna Jancso contributes to the study of bee populations by enabling automatic recognition of the types of pollen brought in by bees.

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Using video camera, image recognition, machine learning and data integration, she developed a system for counting pollen and an algorithm for matching it with the regionally occurring plants, which makes it possible to determine the pollen and its origin. Thereby, she managed to observe bees in their working process and classify pollen without interfering with the complex life in the hive.

The thesis was written within the framework of the BeeLivingSensor project, – a transdisciplinary endeavor operated by the University of Zurich, ETH Zurich and beekeepers – which aims to shed light on this complex issue through automated, non-invasive collection of data on bees. Thus, the goal of the work was to integrate two pollen metrics into the web-based platform that serve as indicators of biodiversity and bee health: pollen count and pollen floral diversity. For the first metric, a fully scalable end-to-end pollen tracking system was developed using existing computer vision solutions. For the second metric, an algorithm was developed to match plants blooming in a given area at a given time.

Bachelor's level: «Designing Technology for People Affected by Forced Marriage» by Nimra Ahmed

What would an app need to do in order to help women who find themselves in a situation of forced marriage? Through a Human-Computer Interaction design process, Bachelor graduate Nimra Ahmed developed the prototype of an app that offers help and information to those affected and supports the work of a national help organization.

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For her thesis research, Ahmed collaborated with the Swiss Competence Center Against Forced Marriage (CoCFM), a non-profit organization that provides support, resources, and assistance to people in Switzerland who are affected by or at risk of forced marriage situations to investigate the causes, contexts, and consequences of forced marriage in Switzerland.

The goal of the thesis was to develop – in collaboration with the CoCFM – applications that would  support the organization’s outreach, communication, and assistance for women affected by forced marriage, particularly women trying to prevent, or escape forced marriages, or women who had left forced marriages and feared retaliation by their spouses, families, or communities. The transition to independence requires support in many forms from the CoCFM including counseling and emotional support, practical advice on leaving a forced marriage (e.g., what documents to take), and the arrangement of a safe living situation upon leaving. This support is especially challenging as many of the women in these circumstances have been dependent on their families and have had their freedoms restricted their entire lives, including having their communications and mobile devices monitored.

Based on her research, Ahmed identified several stages of the process of leaving a forced marriage situation that could potentially be supported with technology, as well as key requirements for any technological applications to maintain the safety of the users while addressing their primary needs.

The research presents several prototype technologies to address a variety of challenges faced by CoCFM staff and women attempting to leave forced marriages. Through an iterative Human-Computer Interaction design process, Ahmed collected feedback on the technology concepts from the CoCFM to refine the technology designs to better suit the needs of the women affected by forced marriages and the CoCFM itself.

 

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AWARD WINNERS AND NOMINEES AT A GLANCE

PhD level

Stefano

 

Stefano Ramelli

With his outstanding dissertation «Finance in the Climate Crisis: Preferences, Policies, and Prospects», Stefano Ramelli is making a crucial contribution to the implementation of the Sustainable Development Goals SDG 7 «Affordable and Clean Energy» and SDG 13 «Climate Action».

Nominees (German only)


Nominierte

Andrea

                                             

Andrea Bublitz

Mit ihrer hervorragenden Dissertation mit dem Titel «The miscalibration of online news knowledge: Why consumers feel better informed than they objectively are» leistet Andrea Bublitz einen entscheidenden Beitrag für die Umsetzung der Nachhaltigkeitsziele SDG 4 «Hochwertige Bildung» und SDG 12 «Nachhaltige/r Konsum und Produktion».

Gazi

 

Gazi Kabas

Mit seiner hervorragenden Dissertation mit dem Titel «Essays on Household Finance and Empirical Banking» leistet Gazi Kabas einen entscheidenden Beitrag für die Umsetzung der Nachhaltigkeitsziele SDG 1 «Keine Armut», SDG 3 «Gesundheit und Wohlergehen» und SDG 8 «Menschenwürdige Arbeit und Wirtschaftswachstum».

Elisa

 

Elisa Macchi

Mit ihrer hervorragenden Dissertation mit dem Titel «Essays in Development Economics and Political Economy» leistet Elisa Macchi einen entscheidenden Beitrag für die Umsetzung der Nachhaltigkeitsziele SDG 1 «Keine Armut», SDG 3 «Gesundheit und Wohlergehen» und SDG 10 «Weniger Ungleichheit».

Damiano

 

Damiano Pregaldini

Mit seiner hervorragenden Dissertation mit dem Titel «Diversity, Educational Production, and Labor Market Outcomes» leistet Damiano Pregaldini einen entscheidenden Beitrag für die Nachhaltigkeitsziele SDG 4 «Hochwertige Bildung», SDG 5 «Geschlechtergleichheit» und SDG 8 «Menschenwürdige Arbeit und Wirtschaftswachstum».

Dora

 

Dóra Zsuzsanna Simon

Mit ihrer hervorragenden Dissertation mit dem Titel «Essays on Consumption, International Trade, and the Environment» leistet Dóra Zsuzsanna Simon einen entscheidenden Beitrag für die Umsetzung der Nachhaltigkeitsziele SDG 12 «Verantwortungsvoller Konsum und Produktion» und SDG 13 «Massnahmen zum Klimaschutz».

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Master's level

Anna

 

Anna Jancso

With her outstanding Master's thesis entitled «Automated Non-Invasive Integration of Pollen Metrics into the BeeLivingSensor Platform», Anna Jancso makes a crucial contribution to the implementation of the Sustainable Development Goals SDG 2 «No Hunger» and SDG 15 «Live on Land».

Nominees (German only)

Bok

                                             

Bok Min Choi

Mit ihrer hervorragenden Masterarbeit mit dem Titel «How effective can ‘Sustainable Banking’ be?» leistet Bok Min Choi einen entscheidenden Beitrag für die Umsetzung der Nachhaltigkeitsziele SDG 8 «Menschenwürdige Arbeit und Wirtschaftswachstum» und SDG 13 «Massnahmen zum Klimaschutz».

Vincent

 

Vincent Huber

Mit seiner hervorragenden Masterarbeit mit dem Titel «Developing Corporate Cultures in Start-Ups» leistet Vincent Huber einen entscheidenden Beitrag für die Umsetzung der Nachhaltigkeitsziele SDG 8 «Menschenwürdige Arbeit und Wirtschaftswachstum» und SDG 9 «Industrie, Innovation und Infrastruktur».

Lara

 

Lara Ming

Mit ihrer hervorragenden Masterarbeit mit dem Titel «From Lab to Market: Identifying the Customer and Finding a Problem/Solution Fit in a Technology Startup» leistet Lara Ming einen entscheidenden Beitrag für die Umsetzung der Nachhaltigkeitsziele SDG 3 «Gesundheit und Wohlergehen» und SDG 9 «Industrie, Innovation und Infrastruktur». 

Salomé Wittwer

 

Salomé Wittwer

Mit ihrer hervorragenden Masterarbeit mit dem Titel «Can participatory surveillance complement traditional disease detection – a COVID-19 data comparison in Brazil» leistet Salomé Wittwer einen entscheidenden Beitrag für die Umsetzung der Nachhaltigkeitsziele SDG 3 «Gesundheit und Wohlergehen», SDG 11 «Nachhaltige Städte und Gemeinden» und SDG 17 «Partnerschaften zur Erreichung der Ziele».

Bachelor's level

Nimra

                                             

Nimra Ahmed

With her outstanding bachelor thesis entitled «Designing Technology for People Affected by Forced Marriage in Switzerland», Nimra Ahmed makes a crucial contribution to the implementation of the Sustainable Development Goal SDG 5 «Gender Equality».

Nominees (German only)

Chris

 

Christian Aeberhard

Mit seiner hervorragenden Bachelorarbeit mit dem Titel «Checklists in code review: Do checklists improve secure code reviews?» leistet Christian Aeberhard einen entscheidenden Beitrag für die Umsetzung der Nachhaltigkeitsziele SDG 3 «Gesundheit und Wohlergehen» und SDG 9 «Industrie, Innovation und Infrastruktur».

Lari

 

Larissa Marina Brunold

Mit ihrer hervorragenden Bachelorarbeit mit dem Titel «Sustainable consumer behavior: Energy efficiency in the construction sector» leistet Larissa Marina Brunold einen entscheidenden Beitrag für die Umsetzung der Nachhaltigkeitsziele SDG 11 «Nachhaltige Städte und Gemeinden» und SDG 12 «Nachhaltige/r Konsum und Produktion».

Gilles

 

Gilles Eckert

Mit seiner hervorragenden Bachelorarbeit mit dem Titel «Berichterstattung über die digitale Transformation bei Schweizer Unternehmen» leistet Gilles Eckert einen entscheidenden Beitrag für die Umsetzung des Nachhaltigkeitsziels SDG 9 «Industrie, Innovation und Infrastruktur».

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AWARD FOR SPECIAL COMMITMENT ALONGSIDE STUDIES

With the Award for Special Commitment, the Faculty of Business, Economics and Informatics UZH recognizes students of all levels who distinguish themselves through their achievements, commitment or innovation alongside their studies.

Winner

Michelle

 

Michelle Jacob

In 2020 and 2021, she was president of the Fachverein Oekonomie and also served on the board of the events department. Thanks to her extraordinary commitment, there were panel discussions with professors and experts, the teaching prize «Golden Sponge» was awarded and the speed dating «Oec Connect» could take place. She was also involved in the organization of the Freshman Day and the Assessment Survivor Event. With her always positive mentality, she made the daily study routine of many students more exciting and varied and stood up for the interests of the students.

 

Nominees (German only)

Dave

                                             

David Graf

Über mehrere Semester wirkte er im Vorstand der Abteilung «Unipolitik» im Fachverein Oekonomie und stand als Studienvertreter in ständigem Austausch mit der Fakultät. Dabei engagierte er sich in zahlreichen Sitzungen für die Interessen der Studierenden und brachte ausserordentlich wertvolle Inputs ein. Als Präsident der Fraktion Fachverein Oekonomie war er im Rat des Verbands der Studierenden der Universität Zürich (VSUZH) erfolgreich auf hochschulpolitischer Ebene tätig und es gelang ihm, diese wichtige Schnittstelle mit viel Weitsicht im Interesse der Studierenden zu nutzen.

 

Alexandra

 

Alexandra Victoria Schubert

Als Mittelbauvertreterin im Bereich Volkswirtschaft setzte sie sich nicht nur äusserst nahbar und wirkungsvoll für die Doktorierenden in den entsprechenden Gremien ein, sondern initiierte auch wesentliche Grundlagen für die Informationsvermittlung, die direkte Kommunikation und die Zusammenarbeit unter der Doktorierenden und Studierenden. So initiierte sie insbesondere den Aufbau eines «Wikis» für Doktorandinnen und Doktoranden, einen regelmässigen Newsletter mit Veranstaltungen des Fachbereichs und bot mit ihren «Office Hours» eine gefragte Anlaufstelle für Anliegen rund ums Doktorat.

 

 


* About the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs)

The 17 Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) with their 169 sub-goals are the core of the 2030 Agenda, taking into account the economic, social and environmental dimensions of sustainable development in a balanced way and bringing together poverty reduction and sustainable development in one agenda for the first time.

 

The Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) are to be achieved globally and by all UN member states by 2030. This means that all states are equally called upon to solve the world's pressing challenges together. Switzerland is also called upon to implement the goals nationally. Incentives are also to be created so that non-state actors increasingly make an active contribution to sustainable development.

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