Following the tradition of many colleagues in the past I applied for the Fifth International Summer School on Computer Supported Cooperative Work (CSCW) in Como on my journey to a PhD. Filled with the knowledge of several icons of CSCW, including Dave Randall, Kjeld Schmidt, Ina Wagner, Nina Boulus-Rødje, Claus Bossen, Carla Simone, Antonella de Angeli and Luigina Ciolfi, learning, discussing, working became a lasting experience burned into my memory.
Being dragged out of the routine work of project administration, operational work like conducting interviews, taking notes, and developing software, and being thrown into a multicultural “get-together” of researchers all around Europe has shown me why we are here again. The Summer School pointed into the direction of what my initial goal was in applying for a position at the University of Siegen: Getting a PhD
I can always take a look back at the experiences in Como to get back on track and focus on my goal
Now, nearly 3 months later and being back to routine work, I can always take a look back at the experiences in Como to get back on track and focus on my goal. Even more, because the lectures helped a lot in understanding a grown field like CSCW: Kjeld Schmidt did a great job in explaining where CSCW came from, insights and conclusion in project work and what one can say about findings by Dave Randall made me reflect on my projects and, last but not least, how messy fieldwork might become and how we as researchers can act in the field by Nina Boulus-Rødje presented interesting insight in her own work and might act as a role model function for young researchers to follow (just to name some of all of the exciting lectures).
A huge part was of course the exchange with other PhD candidates, talking about their projects, just having dinner in the evening, or taking a ride with the funicular. I am thankful for the opportunity to participate in such events on such amazing places and meeting such interesting people. I encourage every young researcher to grab the opportunity and be part of your community.