Fostering the next generation of scientists

by Birgit Trogisch
Research Cooperation Manager (Brain Products)

In the academic world, many institutes strive to host Marie Curie Initial Training Networks (ITN) in order to improve the education of early-stage researchers (ESR) and make research careers more attractive to young people. We are confronted with an upcoming shortage of academics, especially in the MINT subjects (mathematics, informatics, natural sciences and technology). Therefore, it becomes essential for our future to foster the scientific qualifications of today’s students.

For two years now Brain Products has been supporting the European action research project titled “Improving understanding and methodologies in early development”, which is coordinated by the University of Lancaster (UK). According to the program, we invited the ESR to participate in a workshop held in Munich so they could familiarize themselves with EEG data processing and analysis. This event took place from March 24 until March 25, 2014. The entitled PhD students from all network partners, i.e. Birkbeck College/University of London (UK), Tobii Technology (Sweden), Stichting Katholieke Universiteit Nijmegen (Netherlands), Uppsala Universitet (Sweden), and the company Qualisys AB (Sweden), traveled to Bavaria in order to learn more about event-related potentials (ERP) and electroencephalography. Because of the different levels of knowledge, we offered two simultaneous courses – for beginners and for those who had already gained some experience.

In addition, all the ESR presented their particular project results, which then could be discussed in the group. A highlight was the talk of our invited speaker, Prof. Blind from Berlin University of Technology, who holds the chair of the Department of Innovation Economics. He underlined the importance of Intellectual Property Rights (IPR) for prospective research not only in industry, but also at universities. The social gathering in the evening was the final point to strengthen the relationships between the young European researchers.

Fostering the next generation of scientists

Brain Products was glad to seize this opportunity, which was funded by the European Commission, and join forces in the interdisciplinary education of the next generation of scientists in the field of psychology. We wish all of them much success in their career!