Karen Scrivener obtained her PhD at Imperial College in 1984. She worked for Lafarge in France for 6 years, before being appointed Professor and Head of the Laboratory of Construction Materials, at EPFL, Switzerland in 2001. In 2003 she founded the research network Nanocem bringing together the leading Industrial companies (Cement and admixtures) with European academic institute to do research on Cementitious Materials. Her research focusses on the understanding the chemistry and microstructure of cement based materials and improving their sustainability. In 2008, she came up with the idea for LC3 cement, this material has the potential to cut CO2 emissions related to cement by more than 400 million tonnes a year. She was made a fellow of the UK Royal Academy of Engineering in 2014.