Large turnout for NeIC 2015
Building on the success of the inaugural conference in 2013, the 2015 version of the Nordic e-Infrastructure Conference attracted more than 180 scientists, experts, and decision makers.
The event was hosted by CSC - IT Center for Science, and took place May 5–8 at the Swedish-Finnish Cultural Centre, Hanasaari, in Espoo, Finland.
During the first two days, attendees were offered a wide variety of workshops to participate in. Among them sessions on e-infrastructures for environmental research, sensitive data, coding, data security, user support, and bioethics.
The two subsequent days were dedicated to the conference track, with sessions on e-Infrastructures for extreme research data factories, services for sensitive data, software as an infrastructure, services for climate and environmental research, and the future Nordic e-infrastructure ecosystem.
In her welcoming talk, Dr Riitta Maijala, Director of the Science Policy Section of Finland’s Department of Higher Education and Science Policy, likened scientists to musicians and highlighted the rapid changes that globalization and digitalization bring about for the science community. In a global market for services and skills, the Nordic countries need the best services and best skills to be available to them. Dr Maijala highlighted the importance of open science and research and announced that this could be one of the focus areas of Finland’s presidency of the Nordic Council of Ministers in 2016.
Among other high-profile speakers, Dr Paul Messina of the Argonne Leadership Computing Facility (ALCF), laid out his views on current trends in High Performance Computing, echoing Dr Maijala’s views on the importance of openness in science.
Alison Kennedy, Executive Director of the High Performance Computing and Data centre at the University of Edinburgh, provided a Scottish, British and international perspective on e-infrastructures.
The first conference day ended with Daniel Reed‘s talk on the fusion of big data and High Performance Computing. Coming from a background of high-level positions in the corporate world as well as government and academia, Mr Reed argued that the scientific computing world and commercial big data have a lot to learn from each other.
The conference concluded with a discussion of the future of the Nordic e-infrastructure system, in a session chaired by the Head of the Swedish Research Council, Sven Stafström. Dr Robert Pennington’s presentation of the findings in his report, Cognitus: A Science Case for High Performance Computing in the Nordic Region, served as an introduction to the lively panel debate.
If you missed the conference, or would like to recap, recordings of the talks are available on the conference site.