Impact of TALENT
The TALENT training network strives toward an innovative way of teaching advanced graduate courses. There are several aspects that we believe may make an impact in the way graduate courses are organized.
First of all, we are aiming at building a network that will develop and share advanced knowledge between research laboratories and Universities worldwide. At many Universities such advanced courses in a specific field may be missing. Parts of the reason for the lack of such a training possibility is the fact that many research groups are small and fragmented. The network aims at filling this gap.
It will develop a coherent curriculum that will provide the platform for a cross-cutting theory for understanding and building nuclei from the ground up. It will also link modern theoretical approaches with experimental studies oriented at measuring specific nuclear properties and observables. These goals will be reached by preparing and delivering series of lectures, commissioned from the best teachers and specialists in low-energy nuclear theory. The resulting material will be collected in the form of WEB-based courses, new books, and other educational resources that use modern technologies. No such coherent material is available. Its development will allow more specialized and dispersed University groups to profit from top-class expertise.
The final aim is that these courses can aid in building a broad and well- structured curriculum for graduate students in Nuclear Physics, with an emphasis on the science pursued at new facilities. For small university groups, which cannot offer a broad enough spectrum in advanced research-based courses, this represents a great service to the community.
Since such a structured program does not exist in other parts of the world either, the outcome of our network can serve as a guideline for other countries as well.
The courses, originally nine in total but with room for expansion, cover fundamental aspects of basic research in low-energy nuclear physics, of great interest for both theorists and experimentalists. All courses are taught with an emphasis on current research problems.
The students will be exposed to possible research projects during the various courses and will get training in presenting scientific results both orally and in the form of scientific reports. Every course is, in its last week, accompanied by a one-week workshop or school, where the students meet leading international experts. These experts will present state of the art research based on the various themes presented during the actual course. The students will also present their own research topics. The discussions following from these presentations aim at giving the students a broader view of a given field and act as seeds to new research directions. As such, the courses aim at enlarging the students visions of their fields and point to new research possibilities. By maturing new ideas, the hope is that this aspect may strengthen the career paths of the participants.
The advanced training network in low-energy nuclear theory will equip students with a broad background in methods and techniques that can easily be transferred into other domains. Students will not only gain knowledge in advanced low-energy nuclear physics but also in modelling complicated systems and advanced, high performance computing.
The characteristic feature of this initiative is training in multi-scale nuclear physics. This knowledge is crucial not only for a basic understanding of complicated quantum many-body systems, such as atomic nuclei, but also for further development of knowledge-oriented industry; from materials science to biological systems.
Furthermore, an important aspect of this training is the link between theoretical methods and high-performance computing. This aspect is crucial for the knowledge based industry and enhances the competence of our students. The connection between our courses and possible partners from the private sector that are involved in high-performance computing gives our training an added value we feel is strongly missing in standard graduate educations.