29. June, 2018
We are excited to invite you to join this year’s annual conference of NORBIS, the national research school in bioinformatics, biostatistics and systems biology. Our fourth conference takes place in alpine surroundings at Voss, along the train track between Oslo and Bergen, on October 17-19. Join us there for great talks by international experts and PhD candidates, poster sessions, team building activities and an opportunity to build your network and hang out with a great gang of people sharing many of your interests.
The conference is open for everyone. We cover travel and accommodation costs for all PhD students, and master students and post docs can apply for support. We also want to encourage supervisors and other researchers to join our conference, both to facilitate discussion across several levels of experience, to inspire our students, and to increase your own national network.
Read more and register here by September 10!
18. June, 2018
Do you carry an idea for a course or a workshop within the fields of bioinformatics, biostatistics or systems biology? Want to invite international experts to give lectures at this event? Once again it is time for NORBIS to ask you to propose a course or a workshop to be organised with financial and administrative support from us. We welcome brand new ideas, as well as adaptations of already existing courses and workshops.
Our financial support will cover travel related expenses for invited and internal lecturers as well as participating student members, for both courses and workshops. For courses, we will in addition give a flat sum of 60 000 NOK per course to the responsible department, to compensate time spent preparing and teaching the course. Our administrative support may help during both planning and execution of the course or the workshop, and will ease the process of making a course available across institutions.
Please visit this page to get an overview of the activities that we already offer, and to read our guidelines.
Our members currently have the following topics on their wish list (among many other!):
– proteomics analysis (statistics and bioinformatics)
– basic and advanced statistics on molecular data (in high demand!)
– high dimensional data analysis
– evolutionary genomics
– network biology
– machine learning
– clinical NGS analysis
– open source data
You are of course free to propose other topics within the scope of NORBIS.
We aim for our courses to be organized in a biannual fashion. We therefore encourage organisers of previous NORBIS courses to apply with an updated proposal, and to kindly add a summary of the participation and evaluation from the last round, as well as a note describing any updates and changes.
Please read more and register your proposal here: by September 28 2018.
12. June, 2018
We are happy to again offer you the opportunity to attend a Nature Masterclass workshop on scientific writing, in Fredrikstad September 6-7. The training is delivered by two senior editors from the Nature Publishing Group (Nature Biotechnology and Nature Communications), who will teach you how to get the most out of the writing process, to understand the editorial processes and how to work with them, and to know what it takes to get published in top-ranked journals.
This workshop is organised as a collaboration with the national research schools ForBio, IBA, NFIF and DEEP. NORBIS has a limited number of places at this workshop, and will prioritise senior PhD students already in the process of preparing a manuscript. In the submission form, you will be asked to upload an abstract for the paper you plan to work on during the workshop. We will select those of you whom are most likely to benefit from this workshop.
Read more and register here by August 1.
7. May, 2018
We are happy to announce that registration now is open for this year’s NORBIS summer school, ‘Robust and reproducible practices in bioinformatics programming‘, which takes place in Oslo, August 6-10. Please read more and register here, by June 20.
24. April, 2018
We are happy to announce that NORBIS will have a number of seats available for our members at the course in ‘Machine Learning in Medical Bioinformatics’, organised by our Swedish collaborators MedBioInfo.se in Linköping, Sweden, June 11-15. NORBIS members may apply for a seat and a travel grant to attend the course, please read more here.
11. April, 2018
Post-docs working in fields related to those of NORBIS may now sign up as post-doc members and enjoy the benefits of prioritised access to, and the possibility to apply for funding to join, NORBIS courses and workshops. In return, NORBIS expects post-docs to agree to list your project and areas of expertise in a database at the NORBIS web page, and to thereby pose as potential mentors and advisors for our PhD student members.
Read more and apply for membership here!
4. April, 2018
We are happy to announce that the NORBIS board has awarded a total of 275 000 NOK, to support the research exchange of five NORBIS PhD students during 2018. Each student will receive funding corresponding to the NORBIS international travel grant guidelines, which may be found here.
The five successful students are as follows:
||Memorial University of Newfoundland
|| 4 months, Sept 2018 – Jan 2019
||Edinburgh Genomics, University of Edinburgh
||3 months, Nov 2018 -Jan 2019
||École polytechnique fédérale de Lausanne (EPFL)
||6 months, June – Nov 2018
||London School of Hygiene & Tropical Medicine,
||4 months, July – Oct 2018
||Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory
||6 months, July 2018-Jan 2019
We wish you all good luck, and look forward to reading your reports when you return!
12. March, 2018
by Vasundra Touré, NTNU
I had the chance to do my international exchange in Paris for 6months where I visited two research groups: Pr. Emmanuel Barillot’s group at Institut Curie and Pr. Denis Thieffry’s group at ENS Paris. Both have common domains of interest with my group. With the approval of my supervisor, I did this research stay in the first year of my PhD to help me comfort the structure of my research project. Plus, while still be at the beginning of my PhD, I was flexible to add new insights or new areas to explore in my project.
For me, it has been a good experience. You get to see how the different groups work and you benefit from the richness of skills of each group. I learned a lot about certain topics that I didn’t know anything about (e.g, computation of trap spaces to find stable states for boolean models) and also got feedbacks regarding my own project from an external point of view (e.g, representation of causality statements and ways to extract them from existing repositories). I also had the opportunity to help people in the groups with certain topics that I was familiar with. So, I was happy to return the favor! I attended the groups meetings where I got to know about projects of the teams and, lab seminars that involved more people from the department with topics that were sometimes completely different to what I am doing, but still interesting to listen to.
During this research stay, I have been able to attend several meetings and workshops relevant for my project (e.g, GREEKC, Curation Workshop on Molecular and Causal Interaction, COMBINE) which helped me to put on track one part of my PhD project and for which I am currently writing a paper.
Besides work, I enjoyed my time in Paris. Most of my family and friends are there, so it was refreshing to spend some time with them. And Paris is a beautiful city.
Thank you NORBIS for funding this research stay. I would also like to thank both groups that hosted me. This has been resourceful for my PhD, which is definitely on tracks now! A couple of ideas emerged from this research stay, some work done, some work still in progress. One month after my stay, I am still working on some of the tasks started during my stay abroad and this gave to my group new perspectives to study as well!
22. January, 2018
Newcastle International Centre for Life, Newcastle University
by Miriam Gjerdevik, University of Bergen
I visited Heather J. Cordell, Professor of Statistical Genetics, and her research group at Newcastle University, Institute of Genetic Medicine, from September 2017 to December 2017.
Heather Cordell is a world-leading researcher within the development and application of statistical methodology to genetic studies of complex diseases. We have several research interests in common, in particular statistical analyses involving case-parent trios. The purpose of my research exchange was to expand my international network and establish a connection and collaboration with Cordell and her group.
I started working on my third PhD paper in the beginning of my research stay. With excellent supervising from both my main supervisor, Håkon Gjessing, and Cordell, I managed to write a decent first draft of the paper during my three-month stay. The input from Cordell has improved the quality of my paper, and the collaboration has been very fruitful. During my exchange, I had regular phone meetings with my supervisor. This was an excellent way of keeping in touch and discussing my ongoing research.
I was warmly welcomed by Cordell and her group. Within the office, the group organized fortnightly informal seminars where we could share new thoughts and ideas for research. Moreover, the group met for dinner and institution drinks after work, which made it easy to get to know everyone and to socialise in the evenings. I also joined the group for a one-day conference in Edinburgh, which further expanded my international network.
My stay in Newcastle has been very successful! I have developed new ideas for research and increased my knowledge of complex trait research. Moreover, I have met several new colleagues and friends, with whom I hope to cooperate throughout my career.
I truly enjoyed each and every day at the Institute of Genetic Medicine in Newcastle! I am very grateful for receiving this opportunity, and I would like to thank Gjessing and Cordell for all their help in making this international exchange possible, as well as the National research school in bioinformatics, biostatistics and systems biology (NORBIS) and the University of Bergen for the necessary funding.
Prior to my research stay, there was quite a lot of paperwork to complete (applications for funding, occasional student application, NAV, insurances, etc.). In addition, there were practical concerns such as finding an apartment. I recommend starting the paperwork as early as possible, as it took longer than expected. Moreover, I regret not going for a longer period of time. I would encourage others to apply for a six-month exchange if possible.
12. January, 2018
CSIC – Estación Experimental de Aula Dei (EEAD), Zaragoza, Spain
by Teshome Mulugeta, NMBU
I am so grateful to NORBIS that I was given the opportunity to travel to EEAD-CSIC, Zaragoza, Spain as a visiting PhD student. It was a useful experience to me to work and talk with several outstanding people. My visit to EEAD-CSIC was arranged and supervised by Dr. Bruno Contreras-Moreira. The primary goal of my visit was to spend time doing research related to my PhD with relevant professionals.
Upon arrival at EEAD-CSIC, I presented my PhD projects. We had a very productive discussion and I got useful feedback from relevant EEAD-CSIC research groups. We started by outlining the activities to perform during my stay at EEAD-CSIC. During my stay at EEAD-CSIC, I learned new proven approaches and methods to annotate transcription factors and their binding sites, to analyse expression based cis-regulatory motifs and to develop comparative database for orthology to be used for phylogenetic de novo regulatory motif discovery. The knowledge and experience i gained from EEAD-CSIC visit helped me to move my PhD projects forward.
My presence at EEAD-CSIC provided me an opportunity to be invited to participate in one of the European Cooperation in Science and Technology (COST) action in Gene Regulation Ensemble Effort for the Knowledge Commons (GREEKC) which was held in Lisbon, Portugal. The main goal of the workshop was to get a first hand hack-a-thon training from GREEKC resources and experts in gene regulation. The workshop helped me to assess the state of the art in gene regulatory process and its subsequent use in computational biology. I got the opportunity to discuss my PhD projects with trainers and trainee. I was active in the discussions and I believe my participation had a significant contribution in defining action points and future improvements at the end.
My visit to EEAD-CSIC helped me to expand my professional network both in Spain and internationally especially at the GREEKC event that i participated in Lisbon. I met extraordinary professionals and experts in my PhD study area and had established a strong network with them. I am now active member of Gene Regulation Ensemble Effort for the Knowledge Commons (GREEKC http://greekc.org/) and will participate their annual workshops and trainings in the future.
Adventures and holidays
Zaragoza is located in northeastern Spain, Aragon region. I was fortunate to be in Zaragoza where the Pilar Festival (Las Fiestas del Pilar) is celebrated on the 12th of October. During the official celebration week, there comes wide variety of events like concerts, parades, flowers and theatre. It was amazing festival that brought people from every corner of Spain.
People show devotion to the Virgin del Pilar by leaving flowers
I had also the opportunity to revel in the incredible mountain scenery of the Pyrenees Spain arranged by EEAD-CSIC work colleagues. The experience was a truly engaging and captivating which has left me awestruck.
Hiking to the Pyrenees
In general, my visit was a very fruitful and enriching experience. I am grateful to NORBIS for providing this opportunity. I would also like to thank Dr. Bruno for the hospitality and assistance during my stay in Spain. I also would like to thank my supervisors Prof. Dag Inge Våge, Associate Prof. Simen Rød Sandve, Dr. Torfinn Nome and Prof. Torgeir R. Hvidsten. Thanks for EEAD-CSIC colleagues and staff for their kindness and warm welcome.
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