Who will join the Designathon Healthy Brain Community?

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The human brain is civilization's most precious resource. The Radboud Campus has contributed significantly to the progress in understanding the organization of the brain and has the potential to make a unique next step forward in this endeavor. The Reinier Post foundation is generously willing to invest up to 10ME in the upcoming five years to establish the Healthy Brain Community; a large cohort that is deeply and longitudinally phenotyped in all relevant cognitive, affective, behavioral and social domains against a background of diverse neural and biological data.

This resource, together with the diverse academic expertise on campus will allow us make a unique leap forward in understanding the human brain within the context it lives in. Moreover, it offers fundamentally new research opportunities for academics from virtually all faculties and it paves a way for new interactions with commercial and public institutions. Finally, it enables a new avenue for public interaction, discussing and experiencing the role neuroscience may or may not play in our society. All these results will increase the impact and visibility of the Radboud University, the Radboudumc and the Max Planck Institute for Psycholinguistics.

Currently, an implementation team from the entire campus is considering how the cohort should look like:
-Who should be investigated - children, adolescents, adults, or elderly from a population-based sample or some other specified sample?
-Which cognitive, affective, behavioral, social, and neural domains should be investigated?
-Which bio samples should be collected?
-How dynamic (repeated, continuously) should measures be taken over what time period?

To allow researchers from all faculties to make use of the data, it is important that the right data will be collected. The set-up of the cohort is open to discussion and input from everyone. We started this process by asking your input, and we received several reactions. These reactions are discussed in the implementation team and helped to steer the process.

The next step in the process is a Designathon that will take place on Friday 30 June and Saturday 1 July. During the Designathon, we will develop concrete ideas for the study design of the Healthy Brain Community by providing first design drafts. This aim will be tackled by ten teams, each developing its own design. The ten different drafts will be used by the implementation team as input for the final design in a subsequent procedure. The final design will be approved by the Healthy Brain steering committee before the implementation is scheduled in year two.

For this Designathon, we are looking for:

  • Up to five individuals from RIHS who can serve as team members. We are looking for enthusiastic researchers with diverse backgrounds and seniority so that the entire RIHS is covered
  • Two or three individuals from RIHS who can serve as mentors to guide the teams. Here we are looking for more senior people who have specific expertise/experience relevant for the cohort study. In the end we will select/invite a smaller number of             mentors, but we need to have a pool from which we can select to get a good spread of expertise.

This is hence your opportunity to contribute to the design of the Health Brain Community! If you are interested to contribute to the Designathon as a team member or a mentor, please inform Loes van der Zanden (Loes.vanderZanden@Radboudumc.nl) before 19 May.

 

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