Berlin | Oxford Summer School on open, transparent, and reproducible research in the life sciences

on Open, transparent, and reproducible research in the life sciences

Background

Transparency and reproducibility of research methods and results are important hallmarks of high-quality science. In the last few years, many novel web-based tools and technologies have emerged that allow for a comprehensive representation of the scientific process that goes far beyond descriptions of research methods and results as found in traditional journal articles. These novel tools and technologies have the potential to revolutionize the way research methods and results are communicated and facilitate scientific collaboration and sharing of research data and ideas in an unprecedented manner. However, using these novel tools and technologies in a qualified and responsible manner requires knowledge and skills that is usually not part of a life science curriculum. To close this gap, we offer a four-day summer school to guide early career researchers (PhD students and postdocs) towards an open, transparent, and reproducible research workflow. These topics will be embedded in a more general curriculum on research ethics and stakeholder involvement.

Program

The four-day summer school will consist of a series of lectures that cover the following topics:

  • Preregistration and registered reports, biases in research
  • Open Data, data management plans, and meta-data
  • Reproducible workflows
  • Statistics and reproducibility
  • Bioethics of reproducible research
  • Citizen science and patient involvement

The lectures will be complemented by interactive workshops that participants can choose based on their scientific field and preferences:

  • Reproducible Neuroimaging (BIDS format, COBIDAS guidelines, and data protection)
  • Gender issues in biomedical research
  • Preclinical animal research (ARRIVE guidelines and experimental design)
  • Clinical data reporting (CONSORT guidelines)
  • Software version control using Git and Github
  • Creative commons software licensing
  • Simulating experimental data
  • Meta-research
  • Publication systems - From submission to peer review including open access
  • Reporting of null results (wording and ethics)
  • Improving publication figures
  • and others.

Beyond the lectures and workshops, participants will work, under supervision of the lecturers, on their own projects to increase reproducibility and openness in their current or upcoming research project.

Application

Interested participants should send a letter of motivation (300 words), a project outline (300 words) and a short CV. The letter of motivation should contain a brief statement how the applicant has applied or intends to apply open science practices in their current work, if any other courses were attended, and what particular challenges were encountered in their work that this summer school addresses. The project outline should give a brief overview of the upcoming or recently started research project. Applicants with projects from the full spectrum of life sciences are encouraged to apply. If applicants are accepted into the summer school, we require a signed form of the applicant’s supervisor that ensures the support of transparent and reproducible practices for the envisioned project.

Applications should be in a single pdf and adhere to the file format: FIRSTNAME_LASTNAME_APPLICATIONSUMMERSCHOOL.pdf

The application deadline is 1st of July 2018 at midday (Berlin time).
Candidates will be notified of the outcome by mid July 2018.

Costs

The course is free to attend. Participants need to arrange their own travel and accommodation. We are able to fund travel costs for a limited number of applicants with up to 500 Euro if applicants cannot cover the travel costs from their own funding. Please state in your letter of motivation if you would like to apply for funding.

Venue

The course will take place in the center of Berlin at the QUEST Center for Transforming Biomedical Research at the Berlin Institute of Health.