Over 100 people from 19 countries gain HPC skills at 5th International HPC Summer School


A total of 80 graduate students and post-docs—25% percent of them women—representing 28 nationalities and 5 continents were selected from more than five hundred applicants from educational and research institutions in Canada, Europe, Japan, and the United States to attend the Fifth Annual International Summer School on HPC Challenges in Computational Sciences, held 1-6 June 2014, at The Budapest University of Technology and Economics in Budapest, Hungary.

The summer school was jointly sponsored by the European Union Seventh Framework Program’s Partnership for Advanced Computing in Europe Implementation Phase project (PRACE-3IP), the U.S. National Science Foundation’s Extreme Science and Engineering Discovery Environment (XSEDE), Japan’s RIKEN Advanced Institute for Computational Science (RIKEN AICS), and Compute/Calcul Canada. Leading Canadian, European, Japanese and United States computational scientists and high-performance computing technologists offered instruction and advice on a variety of topics, including:

  • Access to European, U.S., Japanese, and Canadian cyber-infrastructure
  • HPC challenges in disciplines such as biophysics, materials science, chemistry, earth sciences, engineering, astro- and plasma physics
  • HPC programming proficiencies
  • Performance analysis and profiling
  • Algorithmic approaches and numerical libraries
  • Data-intensive computing
  • Scientific visualization

In addition to promoting knowledge of high-performance computing and its applications, by bringing together participants and presenters from 19 countries, the workshop also encourages international collaborations and friendships. The multi-disciplinarity of computational sciences together with important HPC aspects from computer science and the strong interactions of between mentors and mentees from all over the world contribute to the uniqueness of this annual HPC summer school.

Below are a few quotes from the participant evaluations:

“The program uniquely matches together the right set of instructors with the participants that will most likely benefit from the interaction.”

“The program was very well organized, and the mentoring aspects of it in particular worked impressively well, with well-defined activities and sufficient time devoted for that purpose. I think follow-ups with the students would show that this summer school has had a positive long-lasting effect on their careers, as well as on their mentoring of others throughout their careers.”

“It is unique in bringing together students world-wide from many different computational science areas with HPC needs and offering a wide range of presentations and tutorials covering many HPC related fields.”

“The time actually dedicated to hands-on exercises really reinforces learnings. So many other trainings are more pure lecture-style. It’s very easy for material in that style to not actually be learned. The hands-on time was key.”

“I found the cross-disciplinary and international nature of this program to be extremely valuable.”

This was the fifth in an ongoing series of summer schools, this year jointly organized by Compute/Calcul Canada, PRACE, RIKEN, and XSEDE. Planning has begun for the sixth summer school, to be held during the summer of 2015 in North America.

Additional information about the event is available at: http://summerschool.niif.hu.

About Compute/Calcul Canada:
Compute Canada / Calcul Canada (CC) provides Canadian researchers with a national platform for advanced computing. Working with research institutions and regional organizations across the country, CC provides a wide range of computing and data resources, services, and expertise to advance scientific knowledge and innovation across multiple disciplines and sectors. For more information, see www.computecanada.ca

About PRACE:
The Partnership for Advanced Computing in Europe (PRACE) is an international non-profit association with its seat in Brussels. The PRACE Research Infrastructure provides a persistent world-class high performance computing service for scientists and researchers from academia and industry in Europe. The computer systems and their operations accessible through PRACE are provided by 4 PRACE members (BSC representing Spain, CINECA representing Italy, GCS representing Germany and GENCI representing France). The Implementation Phase of PRACE receives funding from the EU’s Seventh Framework Programme (FP7/2007-2013) under grant agreements RI-283493 and RI-312763. For more information, see www.prace-ri.eu

RIKEN is one of Japan’s largest research organizations with institutes and centers in locations throughout Japan. The Advanced Institute for Computational Science (AICS) strives to create an international center of excellence dedicated to generating world-leading results through the use of its world-class supercomputer ”K computer.” It serves as the core of the “innovative high-performance computer infrastructure” project promoted by the Ministry of Education, Culture, Sports, Science and Technology. http://www.aics.riken.jp/en/

About XSEDE:
The Extreme Science and Engineering Discovery Environment (XSEDE) is the most advanced, powerful, and robust collection of integrated digital resources and services in the world. It is a single virtual system that scientists can use to interactively share computing resources, data, and expertise. XSEDE accelerates scientific discovery by enhancing the productivity of researchers, engineers, and scholars by deepening and extending the use of XSEDE’s ecosystem of advanced digital services and by advancing and sustaining the XSEDE advanced digital infrastructure. XSEDE is a five-year, $121-million project and is supported by the National Science Foundation. For more information, see www.xsede.org.


Compute Canada:
Jonathan Ferland
Compute Canada / Calcul Canada

Mitsuhisa Sato

Scott Lathrop NCSA,
University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign, United States

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