Panel discussion on “Interdisciplinary Research-How to succeed on the highway”

Speaker 1: Monika Cechova

Living in the interdisciplinary valley between algorithms and life*Today’s life-sciences are data-driven and characterized by so-called ‘big data’. Interdisciplinarity is becoming a necessity, and the field of bioinformatics requires intensive training in biology, computer science, and statistics. What is it like to be an interdisciplinary scientist? How to talk to experimentalists? Can one truly become an expert in two (much less more) fields? What are the common advantages and pitfalls to being a bioinformatician? The talk and the discussion will be based on the article 
Ten simple rules for biologists initiating a collaboration with computer scientists (
by Monika Cechova*title inspired by the interview between Pavel Houser and Fatima Cvrčková: “Bioinformatika – na půl cestě mezi algoritmy a životem”

Speaker 2: Bernhard Knapp

Cross-disciplinary collaborations have become an increasingly important part of science. They are seen as key if we are to find solutions to pressing, global-scale societal challenges, including green technologies, sustainable food production, and drug development. The synergistic and skillful combining of different disciplines can achieve insight beyond current borders and thereby generate novel solutions to complex problems. The combination of methods and data from different fields can achieve more than the sum of the individual parts could do alone.
Initiating and successfully maintaining cross-disciplinary collaborations can be challenging but highly rewarding. In this talk I will focus on the specific challenges associated with cross-disciplinary research, from the perspective of the theoretician in particular. Based on “10 simple rules” ( I will describe the key benefits, as well as some possible pitfalls, arising from collaborations between scientists with very different backgrounds.