The training concept

SAWtrain brings together leading groups from Europe, Asia, and North America, working on surface acoustic waves (SAWs) on semiconductor and related nanostructures. Together, a new challenging and stimulating network for training PhD students has been created.

The synergy resulting from combined expertise promotes research excellence and provides early stage researchers (ESRs) with training opportunities far superior to those offered in normal PhD programmes thus equipping them with the right combination of research-related and transferable competences. Through international, interdisciplinary, and intersectoral mobility in combination with an innovation-oriented mind-set, the students are given enhanced career perspectives in both the academic and non-academic sectors.

The research training is implemented by partnerships of universities, research institutions and infrastructures, non-academic actors, and SMEs, from different countries across Europe and beyond. The research activities are carried out with secondments (internships) at different academic and non-academic hosts to cover state-of-the-art research in the interdisciplinary areas of basic physics, materials, technology, and device concepts related to SAWs.

The coordinated training also contains topical courses, schools, conferences, and workshops and be complemented by measures to develop key competences and skills, fostering the future career plan of the young researchers. In particular, strong emphasis is put on transferable skills such as entrepreneurship, management and financing of research activities and programmes, management of intellectual property rights, other methods of exploiting research results, ethical aspects, communication, standardisation and societal outreach. 

The ESRs are following a structured PhD programme established on an individual basis by a personal career development plan (PCDP). The PCDP defines the ESR supervision arrangement (including mandatory co-supervision from advisors from different institutions as well as non-academic mentorship), the research programme (and the associated secondments), as well as the extra training measures to develop the ESR key competences and skills. The training process is continuously monitored and evaluated.