Georges Giralt PhD Award

for the best PhD thesis in Europe

The Georges Giralt PhD Award is an annual award given by EURON for the best PhD thesis in Europe. The aim is to encourage high-quality work amongst young researchers in their first research period. The prize consists of a diploma and, in addition, the authors of all short-listed theses are offered an opportunity to publish their thesis as a monograph with Springer.

The PhD award is named the Georges Giralt PhD Award in recognition of the significant efforts made by Georges Giralt (LAAS) to set up and stimulate a European community in robotics during multiple decennia and starting from the 1970s.

To be eligible for the award, the thesis must not only be of high quality but also have been defended during the period mentioned in the yearly Call. Students who have been awarded a PhD degree within that time period can submit their thesis for consideration, if the PhD granting institute is a member of EURON. A panel of senior EURON researchers reviews the submissions and selects a winner. The Award is presented during the yearly European Robotics Forum.

The jury of this event consists of the following members: Sarthak Misra, Geert De Cubber, Fabio Bonsignorio, Krzysztof Kozlowski, Paolo Rocco, Catalin Buiu, Giuseppina Gini, Jose A. Castellanos, Daniele Nardi, Alessandro Saffiotti, Aydan Erkmen, Jorge Dias, Angel P. del Pobil, Gerhard Kraetzschmar, and Herman Bruyninckx.

Twelfth PhD Award (to be awarded on March 20, 2013)

The Call for the 2013 Georges Giralt PhD Award resulted in 37 submissions. After two review rounds, three finalists have been selected, and are invited to present a summary of their PhD work on the upcoming European Robotics Forum in Lyon, on March 20, 2013.
12. Jens Kober Learning Motor Skills: From Algorithms to Robot Experiments
18. Grégory Mermoud Design, Modeling and Optimization of Stochastic Reactive Distributed Robotic Systems
22. Amit Kumar Pandey Towards Socially Intelligent Robots in Human Centered Environment
1. Rosario Aragues Distributed Algorithms on Robotic Networks for Coordination in Perception Tasks
2. Dominik Belter Gait control of the six-legged robot on a rough terrain using computational intelligence learning and optimization methods
3. Matteo Bianchi On the Role of Haptic Synergies in Modeling the Sense of Touch and in Designing Artificial Haptic Systems
4. Danilo De Lorenzo Force sensing and display in robotic driven needles for minimally invasive surgery
5. Fabrizio Flacco Modeling and Control of Robots with Compliant Actuation
6. Álvaro Castro González Bio-inspired Decision Making System for an Autonomous Social Robot. The role of fear
7. Markus Grebenstein Approaching human performance. the functionality driven Awiwi robot hand
8. Matej Hoffmann From locomotion to cognition: Bridging the gap between reactive and cognitive behavior in a quadruped robot
9. Jovana Jovic Towards a functional assistance in transfer and posture of paraplegics using FES: from simulations to experiments
10. Kostas Karakasiliotis Legged locomotion with spinal undulations
11. Laurent Kneip Real-Time Scalable Structure from Motion: From Fundamental Geometric Vision to Collaborative Mapping
13. Stéphanie Lefèvre Risk Estimation at Road Intersections for Connected Vehicle Safety Applications
14. Zhibin, Li Walking Pattern Generation and Stabilization Control for a Compliant Humanoid Robot
15. Claudio Loconsole Advances in human-machine interaction for Upper Limb Rehabilitation and Basic Life Support training
16. Elmar Mair Efficient and Robust Pose Estimation Based on Inertial and Visual Sensing
17. Eduardo Ianez Martinez Interfaces basadas en se�ales EEG y EOG para control de robots (Interfaces based on EEG and EOG signals to control robots)
19. Eduardo Montijano Distributed Consensus in Multi-robot Systems with Visual Perception
20. Erol Ozgur From Lines to Dynamics of Parallel Robots
21. Dimitra Panagou Viability Control for Nonholonomic Systems. Application to the Compensation of Disturbances for Underwater Robotic Vehicles
23. Paolo Pierro Stabilizer Architecture for Humanoid Robots Collaborating With Humans
24. Johan Philips Holonic task execution control of multi-mobile-robot systems
25. Nicolas Rojas Distance-Based Formulations for the Position Analysis of Kinematic Chains
26. Serena Ruggeri Performance improvement techniques for industrial robots in advanced applications
27. Lorenzo Sabattini Nonlinear Control Strategies for Cooperative Control of Multi-Robot Systems
28. Erik Schuitema Reinforcement Learning on autonomous humanoid robots
29. Andrea Simonetto Distributed Estimation and Control for Robotic Networks
30. Jan Steckel Array processing for in-air sonar systems : drawing inspirations from biology for the construction and application of robust in-air sonar systems
31. Paolo Stegagno Mutual localization from anonymous measurements in multi-robot systems
32. Todor Stoyanov Reliable Autonomous Navigation in Semi-Structured Environments using the Three-Dimensional Normal Distributions Transform (3D-NDT)
33. Niko Suenderhauf Robust Optimization for Simultaneous Localization and Mapping
34. Ahmet Fatih Tabak Computational and microhydrodynamic modeling and experiments with bio-inspired swimming robots in cylindrical channels
35. Aimee van Wynsberghe Designing Robots With Care: creating an ethical framework for the future design and implementation of care robots
36. Stephan Weiss Vision Based Navigation for Micro Helicopters
37. Andrea Zanchettin Human-centric behaviour of redundant manipulators under kinematic control

Eleventh PhD Award (awarded on March 6, 2012)

The Call for the 2012 Georges Giralt PhD Award resulted in 35 submissions. After two review rounds the first four candidates were selected as finalists, presenting a summary of their PhD work on the upcoming European Robotics Forum in Odense, on March 6, 2012. Sami Haddadin was eventually awarded the 2012 Georges Giralt PhD Award.

19.Christian David Remy Optimal Exploitation of Natural Dynamics in Legged Locomotion
7.Sami Haddadin Towards Safe Robots: Approaching Asimov’s 1st Law
32.Calogero Oddo A BioRobotic approach towards Artificial Touch
23.Juergen Sturm Approaches to Probabilistic Model Learning for Mobile Manipulation Robots

1.Ramón González Sánchez Contributions to Modelling and Control of Mobile Robots in Off-Road Conditions
2.Cesar Dario Cadena Lerma Efficient Simultaneous Localisation And Mapping in Large and Complex Environments
3.Alexander Schmitz A Distributed Tactile System for Humanoid Robot Hands
4.Júlia Borràs Sol Singularity-Invariant Leg Rearrangements in Stewart-Gough Platforms
5.Cristina Urdiales Collaborative assistive robot for mobility enhancement (CARMEN)
6.Matteo Laffranchi Development of an Anthropomorphic Manipulator powered by novel Variable Impedance Actuators
8.Michel Franken Control of haptic interaction: an energy-based approach
9.Paulo André Nobre Rosa Multiple-Model Adaptive Control of Uncertain LPV Systems
10.Ester Martínez Martín Computer Vision Methods for Robot Tasks: Motion Detection, Depth Estimation and Tracking
11.Tamás Haidegger Theory and Method to Enhance Computer-Integrated Surgical Systems
12.Bruno Vilhena Adorno Two-arm Manipulation: From Manipulators to Enhanced Human-Robot Collaboration
13.Armagan Elibol Efficient Topology Estimation for Large Scale Optical Mapping
14.Jesús Capitán Fernández Decentralized Cooperation for Active Perception with Multiple Robots
15.Héctor Manuel Becerra Fermín Unifying vision and control for mobile robots
16.Pedro Xavier Miranda La Hera Underactuated Mechanical Systems: Contributions to trajectory planning, analysis, and control
17.Luis Puig Omnidirectional multi-view systems: calibration, features and 3D information
18.Juan Antonio Corrales Ramón Safe Human-Robot Interaction based on Multi-Sensor Fusion and Dexterous Manipulation Planning
20.Moritz Tenorth Knowledge Processing for Autonomous Robots
21.Alexander Huentemann Probabilistic human-robot navigation - Plan Recognition, User Modelling and Shared Control for Robotic Wheelchairs
22.Felipe Belo Isn’t Appearance Enough?
24.Paolo Salaris From Optimal Synthesis to Optimal Visual Servoing for Autonomous Vehicles
25.Lars Dalgaard Rational System-level Design Methodology for Autonomous Robotic Systems
26.Jeannette Bohg Multi-Modal Scene Understanding for Robotic Grasping
27.Javier Romero From Human to Robot Grasping
28.Kristoffer Sjöö Functional understanding of space
29.Slawomir Grzonka Mapping, State Estimation, and Navigation for Quadrotors and Human-Worn Sensor Systems
30.Wilm Decré Optimization-Based Robot Programming with Application to Human-Robot Interaction
31.Szymon Kostrzewski A Robotic System for Cervical Spine Surgery
33.Markus Rickert Efficient Motion Planning for Intuitive Task Execution in Modular Manipulation Systems
34.Nicola Vitiello The neuro-robotics paradigm
35.Andrzej Pronobis Semantic Mapping with Mobile Robots

Tenth PhD Award (awarded on April 7, 2011)

The Call closed on December 31, 2010, and we received 31 submissions. The first three in the list below have been selected by the European Education and Training Board as the finalists, and they presented their work on the European Robotics Forum. The winner was Mario Prats. Congratulations to all finalists!
Mario Prats Robot Physical Interaction through the combination of Vision, Tactile and Force Feedback. Applications to Assistive Robotics
Radu Bogdan Rusu Semantic 3D Object Maps for Everyday Manipulation in Human Living Environments
Michaël Van Damme Towards Safe Control of a Compliant Manipulator Powered by Pneumatic Muscles
Cyril Joly Contributions aux méthodes de localisation et cartographie simultanées par vision omnidirectionnelle
Brahim Tamadazte Vision 3D et Commande par asservissements visuels pour la micromanipulation et le micro-assemblage de MEMS. Application à l’automatisation d’une station de micro-assemblage
Gonçalo de Freitas Santos Neto Planning, Learning and Control Under Uncertainty Based on Discrete Event Systems and Reinforcement Learning
Jody A. Saglia Development of a high performance ankle rehabilitation robot
Ruben Smits Robot Skills: Design of a constraint-based methodology and software support
Luciano Spinello Scene understanding for mobile robots
Germano Manuel Correia dos Santos Veiga On the orchestration of operations in flexible manufacturing
Jan Faigl Multi-goal path planning for cooperative sensing
Thomas Thüer Mobility evaluation of wheeled all-terrain robots. Metrics and application
Gian Diego Tipaldi Looking Inside for Mapping the Outside: Introspective Simultaneous Localization and Mapping
Antonio Franchi Decentralized Methods for Cooperative Task Execution inMulti-robot Systems
Martin Friedmann Simulation of Autonomous Robot Teams with Adaptable Levels of Abstraction
Nicola Greggio Unsupervised Object Segmentation, Representation, and Tracking for Humanoid Robots
Micha Hersch Adaptive Sensorimotor Peripersonal Space Representation and Motor Learning for a Humanoid Robot
Antidio Viguria Jiménez Market-based distributed task allocation methodologies applied to multi-robot exploration
Jesús Iván Maza Alcañiz Distributed Architecture for the Cooperation of Multiple Unmanned Aerial Vehicles in Civil Applications
Liang Ju A Novel Amphibian Locomotion for Autonomous Surface Vehicle in Environment Monitoring Application
Uwe Mettin Principles for Planning and Analyzing Motions of Underactuated Mechanical Systems and Redundant Manipulators
Rogério de Almeida Richa Robust 3D Motion Tracking for Robotic-Assisted Beating Heart Surgery
Adriano Fagiolini Boolean Consensus and Intrusion Detection for Secure Distributed Robotics
Pedro Tiago Martins Batista Sensor-based Navigation and Control of Autonomous Vehicles
Hugo Filipe Costelha de Castro Robotic Tasks Modelling and Analysis Based on Discrete Event Systems
Javier Civera Real-Time EKF-Based Structure from Motion
Tinne De Laet Rigorously Bayesian Multitarget Tracking and Localization
Manuel Béjar Domínguez Methodology and Techniques for designing control systems of autonomous helicopters
Nevio Dubbini Left invertibility of I/O quantized systems IFS, number theory, cryptography, algorithms
Jose Luis Blanco Claraco Contributions to Localization, Mapping and Navigation in Mobile Robotics
Lazaros Nalpantidis Study and Implementation of Stereo Vision Systems for Robotic Applications

Ninth PhD Award (awarded on March 11, 2010)

The 2010 Georges Giralt PhD Award was won by Ludovic Righetti from EPFL, with a thesis entitled Control of Legged Locomotion using Dynamical Systems: Design Methods and Adaptive Frequency Oscillators.
The other finalists were Eris Chinellato, Angelika Peer, Christian Plagemann, and Davide Scaramuzza.

Eight PhD Award (awarded on April 7, 2009)

The three finalists that presented their PhD on the
Annual Meeting in Leuven are:

  • Eric Demeester, Katholieke Universiteit Leuven
    User-adapted plan recognition and shared control for wheelchair driver assistance under uncertainty
  • Alejandro-Dizan Vasquez-Govea, Institut National Polytechnique de Grenoble
    Incremental Learning for Motion Prediction of Pedestrians and Vehicles
  • Bram Vanderborght, Vrije Universiteit Brussel
    Dynamic stabilisation of the biped Lucy powered by actuators with controllable stiffness

And the winner was... Alejandro-Dizan Vasquez-Govea!

Seventh PhD Award (awarded on March 28, 2008)

Two prizes were awarded in 2008, one for a Core Robotics thesis and one for a more applied, Technology Transfer, thesis.
Eduardo Rocon

to the Technology Transfer winner: ^

Eduardo Rocón of the Instituto de Automática Industrial, Spain; for his thesis "Active reduction of pathological tremor of superior limbs by means of robotic exoskeletons.

Congratulations also to the two runners-up:

Matthijs T. J. Spaan, Universiteit van Amsterdam, The Netherlands: "Approximate planning under uncertainty in partially observable environments"; and
Vincent Duindam, The Netherlands: "Port-Based modeling and control for efficient bipedal walking".
Cyrill Stachniss

to the Core Robotics winner:

Cyrill Stachniss of the University of Freiburg, Germany; for his thesis "Exploration and Mapping with Mobile Robots.

Congratulations also to the two runners-up:

Andreas Nuechter, Rheinische Friedrich-Wilhelms-Universitat Bonn, Germany: "Semantic three dimensional maps for autonomous mobile robots"; and
Samir Bouabdallah, EPFL, Switzerland: "Design and control of quadrotors with application to autonomous flying".


Getting Involved

We hope that you will get involved in many of EURON's activities and encourage others to do so as well.

Attend Meetings

Attending meetings is an excellent way of making contacts and friends within the community. The Annual Meetings are the major instrument for this purpose.


A lot of things are happening all the time in the European robotics community: conferences and workshops are being organised, projects are starting, job offers are announced, etc. The EURON mailing list is the place-to-be for all your communications around these topics.

Webmaster :  Last update :  Sunday 17 February, 2013
 Graphic design :  Maibritt Popp Stuckert Jørgensen Structural design :  Bridget Hallam