HIDA prepares scientists for a data-heavy future of research
Digitalization and new methods such as machine learning, data mining and big data are fundamentally changing the work of most scientists. In almost all research areas, they deal with ever larger and more complex amounts of data. For scientists, data science is a key to unlocking the discoveries in this data and to cutting-edge research. They increasingly need special qualifications in data sciences.
The Helmholtz Information & Data Science Academy (HIDA) offers doctoral students and post-docs attractive opportunities to obtain the necessary training and continuing education in a wide variety of methods and to become part of a community-wide data science network.
Data Science Schools and other training opportunities
As an umbrella organization, HIDA connects and serves as the roof to six newly founded data science research schools. In these schools doctoral students deepen their knowledge in data science methods and learn to combine knowledge from the six Helmholtz research areas – energy, earth and environment, health, aeronautics, space and transport, matter, and information – with data science methods.
In addition, HIDA collects, combines and publishes existing training offers from all Helmholtz centers and schools, offers its own data science training courses for doctoral students and postdocs and, as a central forum and innovation hub, facilitates the exchange of data science expertise between all Helmholtz centers and research areas.
Outstanding experts from all the Helmholtz Centers come together in this think tank and promote pioneering research through innovative projects and initiatives.
HIDA was developed by the Helmholtz Incubator Information and Data Science, which was founded in 2016. Helmholtz initiated the Helmholtz Information & Data Science Incubator in order to network and strengthen the Association’s expertise and enormous stores of data. It pools the Association’s diverse expertise in the pioneering field of Information & Data Science. The Incubator fleshes out the concrete aspects of the Helmholtz digitalization strategy, brings creative minds from every area of the Association into contact with each other on a regular basis, lays the foundation for innovative interdisciplinary networks, and identifies topic areas and technologies of the future.
New perspectives for gaining knowledge and information
The Helmholtz Association’s broad spectrum of activities ranging from big data analytics, supercomputing, the entire data lifecycle and software development, right up to artificial intelligence and robotics means that it is in an excellent position in the field of processing and analyzing large and complex quantities of data. Diverse possibilities arise in individual disciplines, as well as through their interaction. For science and research, the enormous amounts of data open up entirely new perspectives for gaining knowledge and information.
Each Center delegates top-level scientists to the Incubator; these scientists represent an enormous range of specializations covering a wide array of innovative skill sets. They are supported by recognized experts from research enterprises, renowned research institutes, and various consultancy companies.
Over a period of three years, more than 200 scientists and twenty advisors from research enterprises and research institutes have participated in more than 35 workshops and working group meetings. This has allowed a series of Information & Data Science research projects to be initiated, which cross the traditional boundaries between disciplines and research fields: Two rounds of calls for applications in 2017 and 2019 resulted in a diverse range of innovative research projects being initiated and receiving over 40 million euros in funding.
A vibrant network for completely new solutions
At the suggestion of the Incubator, the Association Directors identified five topic areas that are of particular strategic importance for all Research Centers. These have been implemented as high-tech platforms since September 2018 and create a vibrant network that is constantly developing brand new solutions to meet the challenges of cutting-edge research.
The Incubator’s combined activities make up the Helmholtz Information & Data Science Framework which has reached a total of over 50 million euros in funding per year. Helmholtz is thus resolutely pursuing its objectives of further developing the strengths of the Association, bringing its ambitious digitalization strategy to life, ensuring that German science maintains its leading position on an international scale and offering points of reference in a highly attractive topic area for national and international partners.
In addition to HIDA, the Incubator has initiated four other platforms:
The Berlin HIDA office is part of the Helmholtz Head Office in Berlin-Mitte and is in the process of establishing a space for an education and training program and conferences on Information and Data Science. The HIDA office supports all questions regarding basic and continuing Information & Data Science training.
Urban, open, and accessible – the Berlin HIDA office facilitates exchange and networking regarding Information & Data Science throughout Helmholtz.