Julien Nembrini


  • Since January 2007: Researcher at the Laboratory of Media and Design at EPFL
  • Since January 2005: Post-Doc researcher at the Swarm-Intelligent Systems Group at EPFL
  • 2000-2005: PhD Student at the Intelligent and Autonomous Systems Lab
    (now Bristol Robotics Lab) University of the West of England, Bristol
    PhD Thesis: Minimalist Coherent Swarming of Wireless Networked Autonomous Mobile Robots
  • 1995-2000: Diploma in Mathematics, University of Geneva

Topics of Interest

Interested in the potential of the unsupervised multitude, I study the possibilities of swarm intelligence to outperform centralised coordination schemes. More particularly, I investigate the use of communication between individuals to induce meaningful group behaviours. In this research, emphasis is put on the development of algorithms and systems that are simple, robust and scalable.


User-driven distributed control of collective assembly using mobile, networked miniature robots
3D self-assembling algorithms for square balloons (SAILS)



Assessing the gap between a normative and a reality-based model of building LCA

D. Vuarnoz; E. Hoxha; J. Nembrini; T. Jusselme; S. Cozza 

Journal Of Building Engineering. 2020-09-01. Vol. 31, p. 101454. DOI : 10.1016/j.jobe.2020.101454.


A smart luminaire in an office environment: impact on light distribution, user interactions and comfort

J. Nembrini; J. Kämpf; M. Pappinutto; D. Lalanne 

2019. DOI : 10.1088/1742-6596/1343/1/012164.


Code and its image: the functions of text and visualisation in a code-based design studio

M. Meagher; J. Huang; N. Zuelzke; T. Patt; G. Labelle et al. 

Digital Creativity. 2015. Vol. 26, num. 2, p. 92-109. DOI : 10.1080/14626268.2015.1045620.


Parametric scripting for early design performance simulation

J. Nembrini; S. Samberger; G. Labelle 

Energy And Buildings. 2014. Vol. 68, num. part C, p. 786-798. DOI : 10.1016/j.enbuild.2013.09.044.


Flexible beam in R3 under large overall motions and Asynchronous Variational Integrators

F. Demoures; F. Gay-Balmaz; J. Nembrini; T. Ratiu; Y. Weinand 

2011. IABSE-IASS Symposium 2011, London, Great-Britain, September 20-23, 2011.


Organiseur typologique

T. Favre-Bulle; S. Potier 


AVI as a mechanical tool for studying thin-shells based on Kirchhoff-Love constraints

F. Demoures; J. Nembrini; T. Ratiu; Y. Weinand 

6th Annual Structured Integrators Workshop, University of California, San Diego, USA, April 26-27, 2010.

AVI as a Mechanical Tool for Studying Dynamic and Static Euler-Bernoulli Beam Structures

F. Demoures; J. Nembrini; T. S. Ratiu; Y. Weinand 

2010. 1st EPFL Doctoral Conference in Mechanics, Advances in Modern Aspects of Mechanics, Lausanne, February 19, 2010. p. 69-72.

SensorTune: a Mobile Auditory Interface for DIY Wireless Sensor Networks

E. Costanza; J. Panchard; G. Zufferey; J. Nembrini; J. Freudiger et al. 

2010. ACM CHI2010, Atlanta, GA, USA, April 2010. p. 2317–2326. DOI : 10.1145/1753326.1753675.



J. Huang; N. Zuelzke; G. Labelle; J. Nembrini 

2009. 9th international festival for architecture and media, Florence,

Asynchronous variational integrators as a mechanical tool for dimensioning thin-shell structures

F. Demoures; T. Ratiu; Y. Weinand; J. s. Nembrini 

The Fifth Annual Structured Integrators Workshop California Institute of Technology, Control and Dynamical Systems, Pasadena, USA, May 5-15, 2009.


Assembly of Configurations in a Networked Robotic System: A Case Study on a Reconfigurable Interactive Table Lamp

C. M. Cianci; J. Nembrini; A. Prorok; A. Martinoli 

2008. IEEE Swarm Intelligence Symposium, St. Louis, Missouri, USA, September 21-23, 2008. p. 1–7. DOI : 10.1109/SIS.2008.4668318.


Robotique en essaim: récents résultats et directions futures

J. Nembrini; A. Martinoli 

2007. Journées Nationales de la Recherche en Robotique 2007, Obernai, France, October, 2007.


Safety in Numbers: Fault Tolerance in Robot Swarms

A. F. T. Winfield; J. Nembrini 

International Journal on Modelling Identification and Control. 2006. Vol. 1, num. 1, p. 30-37.


[VOILES|SAILS], Self-Assembling Intelligent Lighter-than-air Structures

N. Reeves; E. Poncet; J. Nembrini; A. Martinoli 

2005. Eight International Conference on Generative Art, Milano, December. p. 297-311.


Minimalist Coherent Swarming of Wireless Networked Autonomous Mobile Robots

J. Nembrini; A. F. T. Winfield; C. Melhuish 

2002. Simulation of Adaptive Behaviour SAB’02, Edimburgh, 2002. p. 273-382.