Background and history

Background and history of the retreat

Since 2004 the Lemanic Neuroscience community gathers once a year for a retreat, a meeting bringing together PIs, postdocs and PhD candidates from all neuroscience labs in Geneva, Lausanne and Fribourg. The meeting used to be primarily organized as a graduate student activity of the LN Doctoral School of the Universities of Lausanne and Geneva, and the EDNE candidates at the EPFL. The then-called Lemanic Neuroscience Annual Meeting (LNAM) took place every year in the mountains of Les Diablerets following the summer break, and lasted one and a half day.

Since 2004, the neuroscience community around the Lake of Geneva (and beyond) grew a lot; many new research entities were founded and PI’s attracted to the Lemanic area. To accommodate the growing neuroscience network, the NeuroLéman Network was established, the annual retreat changed its format in 2019, and became the Annual Meeting of the NeuroLéman Network and Doctoral Schools (NLN) spanning 2.5d in order to foster more extensive interactions between junior and senior scientists around the Lake of Geneva (and beyond). While the first meeting day is meant for discussions among NeuroLéman PI’s, the following days are dedicated to a common scientific and social program for PhD candidates and PI’s. Every year, the meeting program is organized by a team from one of the institutions associated with the NeuroLéman Network. With talks by national and international speakers, lively discussions, short talks and poster presentations of PhD candidates, science is of course the core purpose of the meeting, but the meetings also leave time for social activities and finding symbioses with peers so far not known.

After a successful first NLN edition, unfortunately Covid kicked in, and the meetings in 2020 and 2021 became short-cut versions … (Parts of the) NeuroLéman Network could meet in person at Campus Biotech in September 2020, and in a more extended online meeting in Gathertown in May 2021 we could meet and discuss with the help of our small avatars.