Summer Schools

EpiDiverse Summer School 1: Plant ecological epigenetics and epigenomics – Wageningen, Netherlands (June 2018)

The school aimed to establish a common knowledge base in ecological epigenetics concepts for students from all three disciplines and to inspire students to tackle big questions in plant ecological epigenetics and epigenomics. Training in this school provided the foundation for the ESRs to internalize the multi-disciplinary EpiDiverse research agenda. In addition, workshops were given to help the students to successfully manage their PhD projects.

Concepts in ecological epigenetics. Speculated roles of epigenetic variation in ecology and evolution, as hypothesized in recent literature. 1, 2, 3: sources of epigenetic variation. Epigenetic variation that is under genetic control (3) or that arises spontaneously as transgenerationally stable epimutations (2) has the potential to contribute to selection responses. Environmentally induced epigenetic variation (1) , which can have a genetic basis, has the potential to contribute to phenotypic plasticity, both within and across generations

EpiDiverse Summer School 2: Bioinformatics for genome and epigenome analysis – Leipzig, Germany (2019)

This Summer School was an extended hands-on bioinformatics bootcamp. The school aimed to provide an understanding and hands-on experience in Next-Generation Sequencing data analysis with a special focus on bisulfite sequencing and is co-organized by the bioinformatics groups within EpiDiverse that developed and benchmarked DNA methylation analysis pipelines. This school made analysis approaches available to all ESRs and train the ESRs on the concepts and the practical use of the centralized EpiDiverse high-performance cluster; and enable ESRs to independently use best-practices bisulfite sequencing analysis pipelines and data archiving protocols.

EpiDiverse Summer School 3: Advanced analysis and integration of -omic and ecological data – Marburg, Germany (2020)

During this Summer School the ESRs got specialized training in methods for downstream analyses that combined (epi)genetic, environmental, and geographic information to draw ecological insights. These skills were essential for understanding the (epi)genomic responses to ecological variation but they also provide a sound basis for creative use, integration and interpretation of large data in general, which strengthens career opportunities beyond academia in the open data and internet-based economy.

EpiDiverse Summer School 3 is organized as part of the Black Forest Summer School series. 
--- UPDATE: due Due to the COVID-19 situation this summer school is turned into an online event ---

EpiDiverse Summer School 4: Translating and communicating science – Udine, Italy (2021)

This school emphasized transferable skills: science communication and entrepreneurship. There was a science communication workshop. Further the ESRs worked jointly on contributing information from their projects to the EpiDiverse online learning portal. A second focus was on entrepreneurship where partners and beneficiaries will provide insights into careers in life science companies and experiences with founding of a start-up company will be shared with the ESRs. The ESRs were introduced to commercial exploitation of genetic resources in Fragaria and Populus by representatives of commercial companies.

Scientific conference – Seville, Spain (2021)

To mark the end of the EpiDiverse programme an open scientific conference on plant ecological epigenetics and epigenomics was organized Seville in 2021. At this conference, ESRs presented their results with the broader scientific community and transfer knowledge on epigenetic diversity to stakeholders from biodiversity management and conservation.