Young and promising researchers from 100 countries gathered in the town of Lindau on the banks of Lake Constance in southern Germany. For six days, the young talents were given the opportunity to talk to previous Nobel laureates, listen to lectures, participate in discussions and network with other young researchers in physiology/medicine.
Networking and mingling with new acquaintances is at least as important at a conference. The two PhD students come from the Department of Biomedical and Clinical Sciences (BKV). Damon Frampton, PhD student in Sara Liin's research group, conducts research on ion channels and electrophysiology. He saw the interactive elements of the conference as the most rewarding.
“I really liked the more interactive sessions, especially ´Open Exchanges`, where just young researchers and Nobel laureates sat in a room and had lively and fascinating discussions. There were lots of interesting discussions about science and diplomacy. For example, how to work to strengthen scientific links between countries to reduce the risk of conflict.”
Lotta Velin, PhD student at the Centre for Teaching & Research in Disaster Medicine and Traumatology (KMC), conducts research in global health. She got to reflect on questions that she would not normally consider.
“I think the best thing about the conference was the opportunity to reflect on wider issues related to one’s research career. What kind of researcher do I want to be? How can you be a responsible researcher? How can we approach major social issues as researchers? Through various seminars and Q&A sessions with Nobel laureates, as well as in discussions with other young researchers with different backgrounds and research interests, there was plenty of room for reflection on these important topics that I would otherwise not stop to think about.”
What have you taken home to Sweden?
“It’s hard to put it into words, but I feel much healthier in some way. Intellectually refreshed, if you can say that. I feel a new motivation and a new drive. I know what I want, and I feel ready to take the steps to get there,” says Damon Frampton.
Lotta Velin agrees and adds:
“I’m taking home many new ideas and lots of wise advice! One specific piece of advice that I’ve taken with me is the importance of having fun as a researcher. It became clear during the week that there is not a ´right way` to approach research, but all the Nobel laureates shared a great passion for what they do and have let this guide them throughout their careers.”
What three words best describe what you have experienced in Lindau?
“Their slogan: ´Educate. Inspire. Connect.`It's quite fitting,” says Damon Frampton.
“Drive, playfulness, openness. I think these are key words that permeated the view of research during the week,” says Lotta Velin.
About the conference
The Nobel conference, the Lindau Nobel Laureate Meeting, is an annual scientific conference held in Lindau, Germany, since 1951. The aim is to bring together Nobel laureates and young researchers to promote scientific exchange between different generations, cultures and disciplines. You can read more about the event on their website: www.lindau-nobel.org