Annual PhD students' meeting 2021: PhD - how am I doing?

2 & 3 September 2021

Organizers: Estelle Bruni (University of Neuchâtel), Clément Duckert (University of Neuchâtel), Sarah Semeraro (University of Neuchâtel)

NB covid: in agreement with the organizers, this event will be held either onsite (in Neuchâtel) or online. You may then register without fear of cancellation!



  • Thursday afternoon 13h-17h30 : scientific part, mandatory for first timers and open to all other members of the program
  • Friday 8h45-16h : optional and open to all other members of the program

Detailed program TBA soon!


Description & Theme : PhD - how am I doing?

Pursuing a PhD is a challenge that is both highly stimulating and rewarding: we put lots of effort into becoming autonomous scientists recognized by our peers while also developing other aspects of our life and skills.

But a PhD can also be emotionally and physically straining, sometimes to a point where the excitement of research is eclipsed by grief and exhaustion.

Periods of turbulence are to be expected during a PhD, especially during a pandemic. However, much of it can be managed with the right mindset and the right tools.

This meeting will be held over two days:

  • The first half-day will be dedicated to the scientific part with talks and posters during which you will be able to present your work and engage with your colleagues. 

  • During the second day dedicated to our mental welfare, we will explore the tools available to keep a positive mindset during PhD and take care of ourselves during this exciting, but also often challenging adventure. A round table will be organized with a coach to address different questions on mental health and self-confidence during the PhD.



  • Students socialization and getting to know about the wide variety of research projects being carried out in our doctoral program!
  • Get to know about tools and strategies for keeping a good mental health and self-confidence during the PhD.
  • To discuss together and share about the PhD experience within our doctoral program in a friendly and safe environment.

The annual meeting at a glance:

ALL first year Ph.D. students (or first time participants!) have to present their project with a poster and a 1 minute flash talk.

Do you want to be considered for a short talk (both with or without poster presentation)? Mention it during the registration process. The organisers will inform you if your abstract has been selected for a short talk.

Your attendance is most welcome even without a poster/talk. So, come and join us!

This years’ meeting will comprise:

  • opening talk by the director of the doctoral program Professor Sergio Rasmann
  • 15 minutes talks by PhD students
  • flash talks and poster presentations by PhD students
  • invited speaker talks and round table
  • collective lunch
  • "Apèro"! For this, participants are cordially invited to bring something to share :)



Abstract submission is mandatory if you are presenting a poster and/or a talk.

Abstracts (max 300 words) have to be submitted before the deadline (see below).

Please register through the link below and then use the provided link in the confirmation email to upload your abstract.

Include the title of your contribution and the authors with their affiliations.


All participants can bring their own A0-format poster. It will be displayed from the morning to the end of the event.

Mandatory for first year students and first-timers.

Flash talks

Dedicated exclusively to the first-timers, for whom it is mandatory, a 1 minute oral presentation (1 slide!) to introduce your research and research interests and to promote your poster.

Please come with your slide ready (PDF format) on a USB flash drive to the registration desk, we will collect all the slides.

15min talks

All participants can apply for an oral presentation. It should resume your research project, or a part of it, within 12 minutes of talk plus 3 minutes for questions.

If your abstract has been selected, the organisers will let you know at what time your presentation will take place.

Attendance only

All members and aficionados of the doctoral program, alumni and post-docs of the University of Neuchâtel are welcome to join this event.

Online registration is mandatory.

General information

Date : 2 & 3 September 2021

Schedule :

  • Thursday afternoon 13h-17h30 : scientific part, mandatory for first timers and open to all other members of the program
  • Friday 8h45-16h : optional and open to all other members of the program

Venue: University of Neuchâtel, Faculté des sciences - or online

ECTS : 0.5 for poster or 1.0 for oral presentation (Scientific activities) - Only if it is your first time presenting a poster, or presenting a talk, at this event.

Evaluation : Full attendance and active participation

Information : Please contact the organizers or the doctoral program coordinator

Registration fee : Free for PhD students members of the Interuniversity doctoral program in Organismal biology, lunch and coffee breaks are offered; CHF 15 for other participants (including lunch and coffee break).

Travel expenses : For participants of the Interuniversity doctoral program in organismal biology (DP-biol ): see reimbursement conditions

Make sure you sign the presence list upon arrival!


  • The annual meeting is highly recommended to all the participants of the doctoral program (it is free!)
  • For organizational matters, online registration is mandatory.
  • It is open to external participants (registration fee CHF 15 to be paid at the registration desk - including lunch and coffee break) but, until July 31, priority is given to members of our doctoral program.
  • For registration for the second day of the meeting, priority is given to those who also register for the first day. Maximum number of participants for the second day: 30.


  • June 15 : registration deadline for PhD students that have/would like to present a poster/talk. You will still be allowed to cancel your registration until July 31 if you can no longer attend.
  • July 31 : submission deadline of abstract (max 300 words).
  • July 31 : registration deadline for PhD students who only want to attend the meeting without presenting (attendance only).


Registration: through the web only: opening soon!

Please note the cancellation policy (CHF 50).