BLAST Summer School 2023 – Applications Open!

June 1, 2023

Calling all ECRs!

Following the roaring success of our 2022 Summer School at the University of Oxford, the BLAST network is offering another ECR-focused Summer School to discuss the Tools & Technologies in Ageing Research.

The BLAST network is one of 11 Interdisciplinary Ageing Across the Life Course networks with the aim of transforming ageing research in the UK and integrating expertise and knowledge across disciplines to make research more collaborative, efficient and effective.

Specifically the BLAST network aims to establish a multidisciplinary network of researchers to increase knowledge of fundamental mechanisms of biological ageing that impact on lifespan and healthspan, to identify ageing biology biomarkers suitable for clinical and research use, and to promote implementation of these findings through translation into policy and practice to improve health in later life. This network will break down barriers between traditional academic disciplines, and between different sectors, to drive advances at the boundaries between fields.

Ageing research covers a range of approaches, from fundamental to translational, from experimental to observational, from using cell culture and model organism, to assessing human populations. The BLAST Summer School 2023 aims to provide ECRs with an introduction to the various tools & technologies open to the field to better enable common understanding, networking, and ultimately collaboration to provide more effective solutions to enhancing the healthspan.


Who can take part?

The BLAST Summer School is aimed for UK-based Early Career Researchers (ECRs) interested in Ageing Research from a wide range of disciplines, who would like to learn about the different approaches of biogerontological research and collaborating in an interdisciplinary manner.

ECR includes PhD Students, Research associates and assistants, people within 3 years of their first independent research role such as fellows or lecturers.

To be eligible to take part in the Summer School, you need to be a member of the BLAST Network. If you are not already a member, you can join the network for free via this link.

BLAST Summer School 2022 participants can apply again for this year’s School if they wish, however priority will be given to those who have previously not attended.


Date & location:

The Summer School starts at 11 am BST on July 3rd and closes at 12:30 pm BST on July 6th 2023.

The Summer School takes place within the School of Biological Sciences at Queen’s University Belfast (QUB). We have a limited amount of funding available (see below) to cover accommodation and travel expenses within the UK.


Available funding:

Accommodation is provided from July 3rd afternoon to July 6th morning at Elms Village, QUB, a 10-15 minute walk from the School of Biological Sciences. Further, funding is available to reimburse a portion of travel expenses within the UK (regulations apply, see below) up to ~£100 for each participant.

Food will be provided from lunch on July 3rd to dinner on July 5th (inclusive), and delegates are provided with utensils in shared kitchens for additional meal preparation (e.g. breakfast). Refreshments will be available throughout the Summer School.


How to apply?

If you would like to take part in the BLAST Summer School 2023, please join the network via the link above. Once you are a member, please register your interest via this form prior to the deadline.

Application Deadline: Midnight on June 19th

Please note: We are limited in the number of participants we can fund, so please register as soon as possible to secure your place. You will be notified following the deadline whether your registration was successful.


Preliminary programme:
The 3.5 day Summer School will involve educational sessions from regional and national experts, practical workshops for the development of skills in relevant IT technologies, and plenty of networking opportunities. You can find the preliminary programme of the Summer School below, however please note that this is still subject to change:

SS23_Draft Programme


Travel reimbursement information:

  • Only public transport is eligible for reimbursement (taxi fares can only be submitted if public transport is not available)
  • Only economy flights are eligible for reimbursement
  • Accommodation outside of the period of the summer school cannot be reimbursed
  • Any arrangements for accompanying family/partners cannot be reimbursed

Although accommodation is not arranged for Sunday July 2nd, if needed, private bookings at Elms Village, QUB can be made via their site for ~£45 / night.


I have questions!

If you have questions, please contact the BLAST email with any queries and a member of the team will get back to you (