Nicole Vouilloz was born and raised in Bulle, Switzerland. She did her studies in molecular biology at the University of Basel, finishing her diploma in 1994. She then worked several years in fundamental research, first at the Biocentre in Basel, then at the University of Cambridge UK, before joining the Zoology Institute of the UNIBAS and the Friedrich Miescher Institute in Basel, and finally the University of Fribourg. In 2003, she switched her focus from research to the interaction between science and society, and worked for the next 3 years in a public office preparing decision-making bases for Parliament and the Federal Council, the Centre for Technology Assessment TA-Swiss in Bern. Since June 2006, she is administrator/chief operating officer of the Centre for Integrative Genomics at the UNIL, taking care with the centre’s director of all matters involving the organization of the department, including finances, human resources, communication, internal services etc.