We are very pleased to report that the 1st ESRS Sleep Science School, organized by Pierre-Hervé Luppi and Philippe Peigneux on behalf of the ESRS, was a great success! The topic of the school was focused on “Neural Networks in Sleep”, and gathered for 4 days 39 early career scientists (ranging from Master to Postdoctoral levels) and 8 international sleep experts.
The meeting was held in the south of France (Frejus) at the Villa Clythia (see picture), a property from the French scientific agency (CNRS). We were lucky with a beautiful and sunny weather that made breaks highly enjoyable in between intellectually stimulating activities.
The scientific programme was definitely proactive and aimed at a maximal involvement of participants. It was distributed as follows: 1) faculty lectures (90 min) aimed at presenting the state of the art, opportunities and limitations in a specific domain; 2) oral presentations of the current work of each participant (12 min/person), in parallel with printed posters available for discussions for the whole week; 3) debate sessions (one formal about sleep and plasticity, moderated by Anita Lüthi; the other in the form of an after-dinner table game about reproducibility problems in research, directed by Victor Spoormaker); and last but not least the development and presentation (in small groups) of a postdoctoral level grant proposal, with the support of the faculty. The week ended up with a dance party after the attribution of the best poster, the best talk, and the best grant proposal awards, democratically voted both by students and faculty. The recipients of the awards and a photo-reportage of the week can be found on the ESRS website.
We have been truly impressed by the level of scientific excellence and the enthusiasm of all participants to this school, and by their creativity in their work and project construction, and we thank the ESRS Scientific Committee for their careful selection. We also thank for their contribution the faculty members Patricia Bonnavion, Alain Destexhe, Hans-Peter Landolt, Pierre-Hervé Luppi, Anita Lüthi, Philippe Peigneux, Victor Spoormaker and Vlad Vyazovskiy who made this event a true success!
We sincerely hope that the ESRS board will continue to support the organization of thematic schools aimed at gathering early career sleep scientists around different fundamental topics, allowing them to gain knowledge, share their work and experience, meet experienced researchers, develop opportunities and create novel networks of excellence.
Pierre-Hervé Luppi and Philippe Peigneux,
Organizers of the School on behalf of the ESRS