by Tommaso Dorigo
As a coordinator of the outreach work package of the INSIGHTS EU ITN, I welcome you to this blog! To address the chance that you casually come by, I feel I need to explain from the outset what a EU ITN is, and what we are in particular.
The European Commission has a program called Horizon2020 within which several initiatives have been funded to foster research, innovation, and training to improve our society. In particular one of these initiatives is called “Marie Curie Actions”. Within these actions the ITN (for “innovative training networks”) is a scheme where networks of European institutes who collaborate for research in a number of different areas receive funding if they lay down a complete program of training of young researchers.
The researchers, who must be at an “early stage” (thus dubbed ESRs), typically pick up a PhD by being hired by the network, but in so doing they receive advanced training in innovative ways. Innovations may involve the cooperation with industries, their sharing their research time within multiple institutes, or their working at interdisciplinary topics. These fellows, who are usually hired for three years (while the ITN has a life span of four years), spend their time hopping from a training event to a workshop to a conference, and in the meantime do their research. These are busy young guys!
Now, what is Insights? I guess that would be too much to discuss for a post zero – I am confident that the program of our ITN will be disclosed in detail in future posts. For now, I may mention that there are ten beneficiary nodes in the network, plus several partners. We have already hired nine ESRs, and three more will follow. Some of them will work at physics research by becoming members of the ATLAS and CMS collaborations at the CERN Large Hadron Collider, to do particle physics searches and measurements. Other will participate in other experiments. All of them, however, will receive advanced training in statistical methods, including machine learning.
I expect our newly-hired ESRs to start blogging regularly in this site, and provide a cut-away view of what it means to be a young PhD student working at the forefront of physics and statistics research. So, I hope you will stay tuned and encourage our fellows to let us know what they are up to!