This entry is part 10 of 11 in the series New life

Chapter 10. March 2017 – Networking in Scotland



Millport marine field station – Scotland



March marked the beginning of a new journey. I was heading to Scotland where I took a course on food webs and their analysis using the programming language R (which I truly love).
If some of you want to get into this programming language and do not know where to start, I can write a little tutorial. Let me know in comments.
The course was organized by Dr. Oliver Hooker and his PR-Statistics organization. He regularly organizes course sessions and invites guests such as the brilliant ecologist and Professor Pierre Legendre.
Although I already had a fairly broad education in networks’ analysis, I was able to interact with other students from different countries working on networks as well. My knowledge and education about this topic was greatly broadened.
Pr Statistics - Food web - Millport field station - Scotland

The students and the staff (Dr Oliver Hooker and Dr Marco Scotti)

Mill port field station – Scotland

Credits: Dr Oliver Hooker – PR-Statistics



I think this kind of course fits in a perfect framework for PhD students. On the one hand, you’re expanding your network. On the other hand, you get new ideas and you spend a good time.
In addition, the setting of the Millport Marine Station is relaxing. A small island lost a few hours from Glasgow. The course might be short and intense but I never felt overwhelmed.  If you are lucky, you might even see seals chasing in the water. What asking more for biologists and ecologists?

Largs - Scotland - Pierre Olivier - Ocean Fact
Cumbrae Slip - Scotland - Credits: Pierre Olivier - Ocean Fact

On the left: Largs (on the over riverside of Cumbrae Slip, in front of Millport) – Scotland

On the right: The ferry of Cumbrae – Scotland

Credits: Pierre Olivier – Ocean Fact


The interaction with my peers has given me confidence. They went through the same doubts that I am facing now. We discussed and merged our ideas  and it built something even greater. Our interactions have given answers to so many questions. I am delighted with my stay and ready to tackle new challenges that may come up during my PhD. But for now, I’m still stuck in the lab. I recruited and trained a bachelor student but there’s still work to do.

Millport marine station - Scotland - Credits: Pierre Olivier - Ocean Fact

Watching the sunset from Millport – Scotland

Credits: Pierre Olivier – Ocean Fact


This was the second time I went to Scotland and it is really one of my favorites. Have you ever been to Scotland? Where did you go?

Now the traditional local music.

Belle and Sebastian – I want the world to stop

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Pierre PhD student - CEO Ocean Fact
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