Integrated Science Lab, Icelab, seeks to be a hub for communication and collaboration in the life sciences at Umeå University. We take a modelling approach for causal understanding and connect researchers from different backgrounds.
IceLab is an interdisciplinary hub working to break down the traditional boundaries between different scientific disciplines. When researchers with wide-ranging backgrounds, questions and ways of thinking are brought together, they may come up with innovative ideas if conditions are favourable for generating outside-the-box thinking. To create the most favourable conditions, IceLab and its approximately 20 scientists, from fields as diverse as mathematics, physics, ecology, biology and computer science, actively promote various events and activities where researchers from different disciplines meet to identify and discuss connections and synergies between their research projects.
IceLab Camp, for example, provides an opportunity for young scientists from diverse scientific backgrounds to propose new research questions and to more fully develop their analyses through interdisciplinary methods. Another example is IceLab Lunch Pitches, where researchers present open problems to a broad audience with the goal of collaborating on new analytical approaches and creative solutions. Other examples include interdisciplinary book clubs, journal clubs, research lunches, workshops and innovative conference activities. Each activity stimulates creativity and increases the chances for new collaborations and research ideas.