4th PhD Summer School: from Big Data to research ethics

ECIU | 2019-09-06

Half-hundred doctoral students from 28 institutions in 16 countries took part in the 4th International PhD Summer School in Trakai, organised by Kaunas University of Technology (KTU) and ECIU partners. During the five-day event, distinguished academics, scientists and professionals from different fields were sharing their expertise on scientific publishing, big data, research ethics and other knowledge crucial for the successful career of every researcher.

The main focus of this year’s event was intellectual property. The speakers were exploring policy and practice of research publishing, the road of an idea towards a patent, the ethical challenges in the research, including personal data protection. Big Data topic, which is crucial in nowadays society, was one of the main themes of the 4th International PhD Summer School programme.

“While designing the programme of the annual PhD Summer School we are choosing the topics, which correspond to the global tendencies and are voiced by the doctoral students as important. Big data, research ethics – these are the topics, which cannot be separated from the current context. However, the main aim of our School remains the same – to develop the much-needed soft skills of PhD students. Also, the seminars, where researchers of the very different fields meet, allow developing interdisciplinarity and provide excellent networking possibilities. Often, new unexpected projects can be born”, said Leonas Balaševičius, KTU Vice-Rector for Research and Innovation during the opening of the 4th International PhD Summer School.

Every day of the programme was dedicated to a different topic. Scientific writing was introduced by Frank Witlox from Ghent University, Big Data as a resource for scientific research was introduced by Ari Visa from Tempere University, Enrico Luzzatto from European Patent Academy was talking about patenting and Hallward Fossheim from the University of Bergen was exploring the topic of responsibility and ethics in research.

“We are organising the International PhD School for the fourth time and every year we are attracting great interest from the students across the globe. This year students from 28 institutions in 16 countries participated in the event, which demonstrates that the development of the soft skills and the possibility of connecting with colleagues from different institutions and fields of science is very important to everyone”, said Reda Žilėnaitė, Head of Kaunas University of Technology Doctoral School.

According to the doctoral students who participated in the 4th International PhD School in Trakai, the programme of the Summer School was very interesting and relevant to the current issues in the global science community.

“I am in the last year of my doctoral studies, and in a way, I am sad that this was the first time I was introduced to these important topics. To be honest, I am a bit jealous to the students who have the opportunity to get this knowledge and skills in the earlier stage of their studies”, said Jie Ma from the University Rovira i Virgili, in Catalonia, Spain.

KTU organises the International PhD Summer School together with the partners – the University of Stavanger (Norway), University of Aveiro (Portugal) and the European Consortium of Innovative Universities (ECIU). The group of ECIU Doctoral Schools was founded in 2018; its main focus is the development of cooperation initiatives in the field of doctoral studies. KTU is a member of the Consortium since January 2016. It is the only Lithuanian university among the ECIU members.

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