Summer School 2013

„An excellent insight into new approaches in data analysis and modeling“

The Centre for Genomic Regulation (CRG) and were jointly holding this year’s Summer School, which took place from June 9 to 14 in Barcelona, Spain. In an inspiring setting – right next to the beach – 24 participants from all over Europe engrossed themselves in the topic of “Modeling for Systems Biology”. The overall positive feedback from the participants reflects that the course was very well-received. Among them was PhD student Phillip Ihmor, ETHZ (eighth from left in picture) whose expectations were completely fulfilled: “It was a great experience! Teachers, topics and venue were well chosen – even the catering was excellent.”

From theory to application

The main focus of the course was the modeling of networks. It started with an introduction to basic mathematical concepts and Matlab. This was followed by:

  • Dynamical systems theory, networks
  • Stochastic systems
  • Multivariate and multidimensional data analysis
  • Parameter inference, reverse engineering
  • Modeling tissue morphogenesis and signaling

The theoretical concepts, taught by an international team of speakers, were accompanied by a series of hands-on exercises. The aim of these practical sessions was not only to deepen knowledge gained in lectures, but also to ease the transfer of newly gained skills into daily research activities. For Phillip Ihmor this aim was fully achieved: “I gained valuable insight into new approaches in data analysis and modeling and I will definitely apply several of the methods that we discussed to my Interdisciplinary PhD Project.” The daily public talks were also a highlight for the PhD student: “The lecturers presented the perfect case studies for the methods we had just learned during the day and we actually saw the large impact modeling has on today’s biological research.”

Social events and exchange

The program was enriched by social events that provided a good opportunity for networking. According to Phillip Ihmor though, the scientific exchange was sometimes hindered by a communication gap between those with a biological and those with a more mathematical/physical background: “Enabling a truly fruitful exchange required substantial knowledge of the other field, which was not always given.” Nevertheless, the PhD student is convinced, “If another Summer School fits into my research plan, I will definitely attend.” 


Dr. Eavan Dorcey
Scientific Coordinator
Clausiusstr. 45, CLP D 7
CH - 8092 Zurich 
phone +41 44 632 74 23
fax +41 44 632 15 64

Summer School 2013

Organized by:

Supported by:

Past Summer/Autumn Schools
20152014 / 20132011 / 2010