Fun Fact: The First Danish Astronaut in Space

When Danish Astronaut, Andreas Mogensen, takes flight on September 2 as second in charge on the European Space Agency vessel, Soyuz TMA-18M, he will be the first Dane in Space.

According to plan, Andreas’ mission on the International Space Station (ISS) will last for ten days, during which he will be busy applying new technology and conducting experiments connected to several European research projects in different fields ranging from electronics to biology. Andreas will also be the subject of research himself, as some of the research projects are looking into the effects of spending time in space by running tests with the aid of health sensors (for more on the interesting subject of health related technology, take a look at Henrik’s piece on wearable devices).

While Andreas is at ISS, two small Danish satellites (CubeSats) will be launched from the station. One of them was created at Aalborg University and will be tracking ships. The other, which was made by the Danish company GomSpace, can pick up flight signals and in that way enhance air traffic safety.

All of Denmark is following the mission closely, and students across the country are working on projects in relation to this great space adventure. Space exploration is an important driver of new technology, knowledge and innovative solutions, and it is a valuable opportunity for Denmark to be a part of it.

Have a safe flight, Andreas!

More information about Andreas Mogensen and the iriss mission can be found here.

ICDK launches unique offer for Denmark’s best medicine students!

Young scientist in white uniform working in laboratory

Young scientist in white uniform working in laboratory

Who doesn’t have a semester filled with lab coats, pipettes, statistical explorations, and a world-class scientific environment on the top of their wish-list? Well, probably not the majority, but for some of the top talented Danish med students, the wish might now come true.

Clinical research training for rising stars in the life sciences received a significant boost earlier this month, with the start of the Lundbeck Foundation Clinical Research Fellowship Program—a partnership between leading medical centers in Denmark and the US and Innovation Center Denmark.

Based on an established mentorship model, the program gives Danish medical students international exposure, comprehensive clinical research training, and a highly supportive infrastructure to launch their career in medical research.

Statistics, tutoring, and lab work

One of the only programs of its kind worldwide offering formalized clinical research training for Danish medical students, the collaboration brings students from prominent medical schools (University of Copenhagen, Aarhus University, Aalborg University, and the University of Southern Denmark) to San Francisco, where they are closely mentored by internationally recognized clinical researchers at the finest Med Schools in the Bay Area.

Renowned for extensive patient registries, cohorts, and population-based studies, the participating Danish institutions are ideal partners to help further advance the three California centers’ broad portfolio of cutting edge basic and clinical research.

During the program, each fellow completes one or more closely mentored clinical research projects and receives small-group teaching in research ethics, clinical study design, biostatistics, epidemiology, research presentation, and manuscript writing, and submits a first-author manuscript to a peer-reviewed journal.

More from ICDK: US Educators want Danish collaboration.

Few programs of this kind exist with a validated program infrastructure and mentor program that allows the students to ‘hit the ground running’.

While the Danish students benefit from working in an international setting, mentors in Denmark and California medical centers are inspired by the passion and new ideas that students bring to their work. Often, the fellows help form valuable, lasting global collaborations, as evidenced by international grant applications to the National Institutes of Health and European Union funding agencies.

It is expected that the first 6-10 of the stellar Danish students will be in the Bay Area top Med Schools from the summer of 2015 following a rigorous applications process.

Read more about the program here [in Danish].

What the smartest people in the world talk about

AAAS

The scientific highlight of the year, the annual AAAS conference brought together the smartest and most prominent researchers from the US as well as representatives from all 7 continents.

From Africa to Antarctic, Brazil to Boston, UK to Ukraine, scientists from all over the world were gathered last weekend in San Jose, California, for one of the biggest scientific conferences in the world.

Hosted annually by the American Association for the Advancement of Science [simply AAAS or triple-A S], the 2015 version was held in the Southern part of Silicon Valley, surrounded by hi-tech giants and innovative start-ups. Though the area would suggest a meeting focused more on the applications of science, the AAAS is also the brand behind the Science magazine, pointing more towards a meeting concerning the newest investigations of natural science and basic research.

It was thus an open question, what would turn out to be the hot topic of the meeting, but as everywhere else, Big Data ended up winning that price.

Big data on everybody’s lips

The overall theme of conference was Innovations, information, and imaging. The first components leaned more towards the things surrounding science, as the trend seems to be at such meetings, than towards science itself; policy, education, security, communication, careers.

The way natural science was brought into the meeting – perhaps rather inelegant – was through the imaging-part. Covering everything from climate change visualization, the 25th birthday of the Hubble telescope, to 3D-reconstructions used in archaeology, the focal repeated point of the seminars seemed clearer and clearer, as the weekend progressed.

Every result be it in physics, anthropology, medicine, or linguistics, was backed and based on huge data sets processed on computers, using either general statistics or special programs or visualization tools to find patterns in the Big Data.

American Association for the Advancement of Science Conference 2015

The future is duo-disciplinary

As with the scientific seminars, the ones concerning policies and education also could not stop emphasizing the importance of scientists, students, institutions being able to harvest the insights available from data.

In recent years, the one-most used adjective to describe the future within the education system and the professional sector is multidisciplinary. The question is though, if it should not instead be duo-disciplinary? An understanding of numbers, computers, and visualization could benefit most research fields, and would enable the sociologist, the biologist, the historian, and the doctor to create those wanted Big Data analyses within his group.

Dedicated Big Data groups that are being created in both Danish and US institutions will definitely be worth a lot for companies and universities. However, if data science did not only cross over to other academic disciplines on a consultancy basis, but was instead used on building general data literacy, way more new insights would be discovered. Entire new sub-fields might even emerge, when researchers start digging into their traditional fields from outside the box.

P.S. And if you wondered about the 7 continents: yes – Antarctic was represented with the measures on the Cosmic Microwave Background performed at a South Pole research facility.

Interested in doing research or study in Europe?

Come hear about the possibilities for doing research and study in Europe at the Destination Europe event, which will take place on February 12th 2015 in San José, California, USA. Read more about the conference.

Horizon-2020-logo

The event hosts a series of speakers including Innovation Centre Denmark’s Mikkel Skovborg. Our Research & Technology Attaché will talk about the possibilities of doing research and study in Denmark and elaborate on the possibilities for research collaboration under Horizon 2020 – the world’s largest R&D initiative of $100 billion.

Register for the conference.

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