Network-wide Training

Past events

Kick-off Meeting

2nd April 2019, Cardiff

The MUSIQ project officially started on 1st April 2019 and kicked-off in Cardiff, UK on the 2nd April 2019 when for the first time, all project partners came together for the kick-off meeting. Although the kick-off does not count as a training event for the ESRs as these had not been recruited at this stage, the meeting played an important role in getting all partners on the same page to efficiently and effectively start the project.

Read our news text on the kick-off meeting

1st MUSIQ Week

9-14th December 2019

  • 1st Network symposium (CNRS)

The 1st Week School took place in Marseille, France from 9-14 December 2019 and brought together the MUSIQ partners and the ESRs for the first time to discuss developing the next-generation optical microscopy exploiting quantum coherent nonlinear phenomena. The program consisted of different networking and training elements starting off with a two day symposium where all PIs presented their research and activities within the MUSIQ project. The ESRs also each had the opportunity to present themselves and their individual ESR projects and had organised posters related to their research which helped all participants to receive a detailed overview of how each person will be contributing to the project.

The second element of the 1st MUSIQ week was dedicated to the training of the ESRs. Over the next four days the ESRs received the first sessions of the multi-disciplinary training programme that specifically addresses the scientific, technical and career development challenges associated with MUSIQ’s vision of developing the next-generation optical microscopy exploiting quantum coherent nonlinear phenomena. These topics included the 1st School on Molecular nonlinear optics held by CNRS and two transferable skills trainings on time project management for scientists and on gender equality held by Hertz.

1st School “Molecular nonlinear optics” (CNRS)

The MUSIQ schools are specifically designed for MUSIQ, with the aim to train the ESRs in fundamental concepts and practical knowledge important to this research programme. The 1st MUSIQ scientific school was embedded within the first MUSIQ week organised and hosted by CNRS in France. The school was based on “Molecular nonlinear optics” and a total of eight lectures were given around this topic:

  • Basic Introduction to ultrafast optics I – Giulio Cerullo (POLIMI)
  • Basic Introduction to vibrational spectroscopy – Andreas Zumbusch (UKON)
  • Nanophotonics – Niek van Hulst (ICFO)
  • Basic Introduction to ultrafast optics II – Giulio Cerullo (POLIMI)
  • Coherent Raman microscopy (applications) – Paola Borri (CU)
  • Coherent Raman processes I – Hervé Rigneault (CNRS)
  • Coherent Raman processes II – Hervé Rigneault (CNRS)
  • Molecular nonlinear imaging and microscopy – Sopphie Brasselet (CNRS)

Time Project management for scientists (Hertz)

The time management module delivered by the MUSIQ Partner “Hertz, Training and Coaching for Scientists” aimed to demonstrate the difference between time management for one week and long-term time management, as applied to a scientific doctoral project. As part of the one day module, the ESRs learned to analyse the time they spend in a day and in a week in various ways, and gain insight into their strengths and where improvements can be made. The module shows how a considerable part of the research project can be planned in advance with each ESRs developing a plan for their own project using the specially developed software ‘project management for PhDs’. The module aimed to help the ESRs learn how to: Set specific goals, determine their optimal working rhythm, make a weekly planning schedule, apply the rules of project management, and make a planning schedule for research.

Gender equality (Hertz)

The first of two half-day training session dedicated to gender equality was organised as part of the 1st MUSIQ Week. The training was delivered in the form of discussions aimed at raising the awareness of conscious and unconscious biasing and debates on subjects such as “the dark side of positive discrimination strategies”, “equal gender participation in an unequal world: is this realistic?”, “the truths and the myths of raising a family while competing in research” and was led by experienced staff from our MUSIQ partner “Hertz, Training and Coaching for Scientists”.

2nd MUSIQ Week

May 2020

The 2nd MUSIQ week was originally planned to be a face-to-face event in June 2020.  Due to the impact of the coronavirus pandemic, the school was organised online and held earlier to keep the ESRs engaged during the period where access to the various research labs was restricted.

2nd School “Nano-Plasmonics and applications” (ICFO)

MUSIQ partner, ICFO, organised the programme on “Nano-Plasmonics and applications” in six half day sessions and lecture topics related to the subject.

  • Diffraction limited fluorescence micros-copy and super-resolution approaches – Maria Garcia-Parajo (ICFO)
  • Introduction to nanoplasmonics – Niek van Hulst (ICFO)
  • Nanofabrication and integration approaches towards Neuroplasmonics – Francesco de Angelis (Istituto Italiano di Tecnologia)
  • Nanoplasmonics & single molecules using DNA origamis – Guillermo Acuña (Université de Fribourg)
  • Plasmonic based fluorescence enhancement & FRET manipulation – Jerome Wenger (Fresnel Institute)
  • Nanoplasmonics for ultra-sensitive detection & living cell applications – Maria Garcia-Parajo (ICFO)

Effective research presentation incl. blogging skills for scientists (Hertz)

This intensive course took holding a presentation for an international scientific conference as starting point; the ESRs were trained to effectively present their research by giving a  short 5-7 minutes presentation. After the session, feedback was provided on clarity and conciseness, captivating introduction and powerful conclusions, structure, enthusiasm, body language, contact with the audience, effective PowerPoint slides. To provide more tailored learning and feed back the 15 ESRs were split into 4 groups with each group individually taking part in the intensive online half day course.  The online training course was provided by our MUSIQ Partner “Hertz, Training and Coaching for Scientists”.

3rd MUSIQ Week

April 2020, January 2021, June 2021

The COVID-19 pandemic restricted the movement of people which affected many, including our Early Stage Researchers who would be required to travel for their research and training, a key aspect in European Training Networks (ETNs). To find a way for the the MUSIQ ESRs to work together and to manage their “mobility” the MUSIQ training plan was adapted to better meet the ESRs’ training requirements during the pandemic and to keep every one engaged. The various modules in the 3rd MUSIQ week were held as individual online session at different time points in April 2020, January 2021 and May 2021.

2nd Network symposium “Covid can’t stop the MUSIQ ” (GSK)


3rd MUSIQ School “Ultrafast optical spectroscopy ” (POLIMI)


The 3rd School originally planned for December 2020 was also moved forward to April 2020 to keep the ESRs motivated and engaged during the pandemic and to train them on ultrafast optical spectroscopy and related topics which are of high relevance for all ESRs research. The event was organised virtually by POLIMI and consisted of 6 half-day sessions.

  • Introduction to Ultrafast Optics and Spectroscopy – Giulio Cerullo (POLIMI)
  • Second- and Third-order Non-Linear Optics – Cristian Manzoni (POLIMI)
  • Multi-dimensional Spectroscopy – Margherita Maiuri (POLIMI)
  • Exercises of Non-linear Optics and Ultra-fast Spectroscopy – Rocio
  • Borrego-Varillas (CNR-IFN)
  • Coherent Optical Spectroscopy of Nanostructures – Wolfgang Langbein (CU)
  • Ultrafast Plasmonics – Daniele Brida (LU)

Innovation, IP and Entrepreneurship (GSK)

The transferable skills training on Innovation, IP and Entrepreneurship will be held in June 2021.

Planned events

Continuous Training Activities

  • MUSIQ Journal Club (Cardiff)
  • ESR Web forum (Cardiff)
  • Seminar Series (All Beneficiaries)

4th MUSIQ Week

September 2021

  • 4th School “Advanced optical microscopy in the life sciences” (Cardiff)
  • Career orientation and planning for scientists (Hertz)
  • Gender equality (Hertz)

5th MUSIQ Week

May 2022

  • 3rd Network symposium (GSK)
  • Imaging meets Quantum — Cluster day (GSK, accelCH)
  • Communicating science to the wider public (SMS)


March 2023

  • Management and task-coordination
  • Closing Network symposium
  • Open Science debate