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SAS Network Wide Event II at the time of Covid-19 Pandemic – Online edition

Due to the Covid-19 situation, Network Wide Event 2 was held online through the ZOOM platform. Read about activities, training sessions and a social event organized virtually during this Network Wide Event.

The SAS Network-Wide Event 2 (NWE2) was supposed to take place in beautiful York in the United Kingdom. Unfortunately, due to the Covid-19 situation, this NWE was held online through the ZOOM platform organized by the University of York. Despite the online setup of this event, we managed to learn a lot during the training sessions, to talk with each other in formal and informal ways and to discuss our research progress. Even though time was mostly dedicated to work-related topics, ESRs also interacted in a fun and informal environment during a social event.

Day 1

The first day started with a soft-skill training “Tutorial on Project Management” where plenty of useful tips for PhD management were shared. Afterward, there was another soft-skill training “Developing your goals and taking action every day which would cover setting goals and managing tasks”. The next soft-skill training “Unconscious Bias” was dedicated to the awareness of gender misbalance and related issues in academia.

The last training session at Day 1 was a scientific/technical (S/T) training “Safety cases for Autonomous Systems 1”. This training tackled the current issues and research directions on the development of the ­­­safety cases for the modern autonomous systems.

In between the training sessions, the ESR council was held where all ESRs discussed relevant items regarding the SAS project and research in general. Some of the topics discussed were about best practices for conducting research, secondment issues and improvement of dissemination and visibility of the SAS project.

Day 2

The second day of the NWE 2 started with the S/T training “Safety cases for Autonomous Systems 2” and continued with the S/T training “Safety of Machine Learning in Autonomous Systems”. After these training sessions, the Project Coordinator presented an overall view of the SAS progress report. Afterward, the first group of ESRs gave a presentation regarding their research progress.

Day 3

After the second group of ESRs presented their research at the beginning of the Day 3, the plenary meeting continued with the Supervisory Board council. Three parallel work package sessions were held afterward. These sessions were mostly dedicated to secondment plans, deliverables and milestones within each work package. In the evening, the ESRs organized a social activity where they shared funny stories and some experiences.

Day 4

On the last day of this NWE 2, two S/T training sessions: “Human Factors and Ethics for Autonomous Systems” and “Formal Verification of Autonomous Systems” were held. After these sessions, there was an interactive session between ESRs, communication manager, project manager and research manager on how to improve the SAS communication strategy and to discuss the Podio platform. ESRs provided useful and constructive feedback in this session.

Now, onward to NWE III !


About the Author: Dejana Ugrenovic

Dejana Ugrenovic holds a Bachelor’s and Master’s degree in Electronics and Telecommunications, from the Faculty of Electrical Engineering, University of Banja Luka, Bosnia and Herzegovina. Her master thesis was “IoT wireless sensor networks for medical applications based on 6LoWPAN and CoAP”, while her bachelor thesis was “Aerial image registration”. Before starting her PhD at the KU Leuven, she was working in the IT industry as a Data Scientist and a System Engineer.