Fruitful partnership between CITRIS and Innovation Center Denmark

 

All Danish visitors from 2010 during a CITRIS-DASTI workshop in October 2010, with prof. Ed Arens from Center for The Built Environment

Have you noticed? Danes are starting to flock the UC Berkeley campus. This is due to a new partnership between CITRIS and Innovation Center Denmark. The partnership involves joint conferences and workshops as well as Visiting Scholarships at CITRIS. With Sutardja Dai Hall headquarters being fully operational, there is now space to engage companies and other universities more deeply in collaboration and technology transfer.

In 2011, CITRIS will host 8 visitors from Denmark, and by the end of the year, a total of 23 Danish researchers will have been visiting scholars over the past two years. In the above photo are all of the Danish visitors from 2010 during a CITRIS-DASTI workshop in October 2010, with Professor Ed Arens from Center for The Built Environment.

Amongst these are two Danish Ph.D. students, Martin Lykke Rytter Jensen and Hans Martin Maersk-Moeller, who are pursuing their doctorates in software engineering. Martin and Hans Martin recently worked with their host, UC Berkeley professor David Culler, on the LoCal project, which aims to investigate Information Age approaches for managing society’s most limited resource: energy. Essentially, the LoCal Energy Network is “a cyber overlay on the energy distribution system”. The partnership has also resulted in a successful joint application for $25M to research, develop and implement the smart grid of tomorrow.

A previous Danish researcher in the program, Monika Frontczak, spent time at the Center for the Built Environment (CBE) at UC Berkeley. She noted that her “research stay at CBE was highly profitable and fruitful for [her] Ph.D. studies. The stay at CBE was also a great personal experience. I learnt working and communicating with people from different cultures, which will ease the future cooperation in the international scientific environment.”Another visitor at CBE, Associate Professor Jørn Toftum from the Technical University of Denmark, had such a successful visit that he has now built a partnership with his hosts, who will visit him in Denmark to work on a new collaborative project.

Danish visiting scholars who are currently at CITRIS include:
•    Lelai Zhou, who is studying with UC Berkeley professor Ken Goldberg
•    Bjørn Grønbæk, who is working with UCSC engineering professors Sri Kurniawan and Roberto Manduchi
•    Lasse Juel Larsen, who works with UC Berkeley professor Greg Niemeyer
•    Roberto Rodes, who is in the lab of UC Berkeley professor Connie Chang-Hasnain.

To learn more about the program:
Lars B. Nielsen
Research and technology attaché at Innovation Center Denmark
lbn@innovationcenterdenmark.com / +1 650 353 8879

Stanford Researcher Appointed Honorary Doctor at Aalborg University

We are happy to announce that our good friend Renate Fruchter, Director of the Problem Based Learning Lab at Stanford University has been appointed Honorary Doctor at Aalborg University. This nomination is a consolidation of a long and successful collaboration between Renate’s Center and Danish universities.

Danish Participation in Global Teamwork Project
Right now three Danish students from Aalborg University and The Technical University of Denmark are participating in this year’s Global Teamwork Project, an interdisciplinary building project between the fields of architecture, engineering and building, orchestrated by Renate’s lab at Stanford. The project gathers students from all over the world to collaborate in interdisciplinary teams and across up to 10 timezones on solving current building problems for real clients. So far the reactions from the Danish students have been very positive; in particular they highlighted the value of using new web-based technologies in the teamwork and the smooth integration of business aspects in the process.

Close Collaboration
The Stanford Problem Based Learning Lab was founded by Renate Fruchter in 1993 and supports collaborative, cross-disciplinary, geographically distributed teamwork and learning.

Within the field of problem based learning Denmark plays an important role as well. Aalborg University has 35 years’ experiences in educating students through the use of problem based learning strategies and the collaboration between the two centers goes way back; a funny fact is that the first study trip of  the PBL lab at Stanford University was an inspirational visit to Aalborg University.

Almost 20 years have passed but once again Renate Fruchter will visit Aalborg University. This time is for the official appointment of her honorary professorate on April 7th. The goal is that this nomination will lead to even more exciting research projects between Denmark and California. The new partners have ambitious goals and they already managed to secure funding from our home institution DASTI to collaborate on a project on teaching problem based learning to a social media generation. This project is kicked off in May at Stanford.

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