Annual eSSENCE multiscale modelling meeting went digital in 2020

Facts and  numbers

The meeting had 599 registered participants from 51 countries. Over 210 academic institutions were represented as well as 78 companies worldwide ranging from large international ones like Johnson Matthey, Dassault Systemes BIOVIA, AstraZeneca, Northvolt AB, Sandvik, BASF SE, Solvay SA, Ansys Granta, Unilever, etc. , to smaller ones such as Thermo-Calc Software AB,, Evonik Industries AG and Materials Design S.A.R.L.  At any point in time during the meeting high attendance was noted (50-60% of registered participants during the first half of the meeting and the attendence continued to be high throughout the meeting). This was the first virtual version of the eSSENCE multiscale modelling meeting (but not the last). In the midst of the spring the meeting was changed to an online meeting, entailing a pile of extra challenges.

Below, the main conference organizers, Professor Kersti Hermansson and Docent Peter Broqvist in the Structural Chemistry Program at Uppsala University, share what kind of decisions and preparations were needed to make the virtual conference happen.

“For good and for bad, we had to re-think most of the normal conference concepts”, they say. “Like what components are necessary, what is not necessary, how does one create a social ambiance in the webinar form, and so on.  All this needed to be planned as we were 2 months into the pandemic and 6 weeks before the meeting!”.

From a conventional conference to a modern webinar

“First of all, we had to decide whether to postpone, skip or pursue the event. After some deliberation we opted for the latter, checked the willingness of the speakers to switch to webinar mode, sent out a new set of announcements to all the forums already contacted, and – most of all –we needed to teach ourselves all the technical bits and pieces needed to run a smooth online meeting, and the functional website to go with it. This was a new and challenging experience to the members of our research group.”

“Overall, our philosophy was to make the on-line conference as similar as possible to an in-real-life meeting. That is, we wanted to include all the same scientific ingredients as in a usual conference: keynote presentations of international and national experts, invited talks, poster session with break-out rooms, panel discussion, + some sparse participants on site to create a meeting atmosphere and where the Zoom presentations could also be followed on big screens”.

Scientific program and a European perspective

The overall focus of the eSSENCE multiscale meeting is methods & model development in connection with multi-scale modelling and the meeting had “Physics-based vs data-driven” as an explicit sub-theme. This theme continues to be of prime interest to the modelling community and here we strive for a balanced mix of the physics-based and data-driven strands of multi-scale modelling. The meeting website is reachable at

Two large new European programmes were also highlighted in the programme. Thus the computational aspects of the large-scale research initiative Battery 2030+ (launched 2020) was the topic of the first key-note lecture, given by Professor Tejs Vegge (Technical U of Denmark). The new European Materials Modelling Council (launched 2019) was highlighted in the invited talk by Dr. Gerhard Goldbeck (executive secretary, Brussels).

“At the same time, and at least as important”, says Kersti, “is the fact that the national attendance was great. The Swedish participation came from eSSENCE, from SeRC (SU, KTH, LiU), from the e-science communities at CTH and GU, as well as from Högskolan in Gävle, Malmö Högskola, Örebro University and the Technical University of Luleå. And as usual eSSENCE@Lund was greatly supportive in the planning, and also took an active part in the implementation.”

Outlook, 2021

An on-line survey was sent out after the meeting. Fig 2 displays the answer distributions for the question “The scientific quality of the event was….” (5 was best). Another question was: “How likely are you to attend our event next year if it were to be held via Zoom?” where 67% gave 5. The question “How likely are you to come to Uppsala in person to attend our event next year?” also gave a high score: 55% gave 5 or 4. For the question “Given both options, which do you prefer?” 52% answered: “in person attendance.”

With the notable success of the conference, the organizers will keep the digital format for 2021, possibly together with in-person attendance. The hybrid approach would allow to combine the best of both forms and provide strong visibility of eSSENCE. Stay tuned for more information

Rapporteur:  Fil lic Ageo Meier de Andrade

(Strucural chemistry, Uppsala University)

SeSE course Autumn 2014

Please see the attached call for participation in the SeSE courses this autumn.

The courses are free for PhD students (in Sweden) and it is possible to get a travel grant of 6000skr.

These courses are so far scheduled:

  • Introduction to high performance computing/PDC summer school, August
  • Matrix Computations in Statistics and with Applications, September, v39
  • Introduction to programming in science and technology, September
  • Computational Python, October, v42
  • Numerical Linear Algebra, October, v42
  • Scientific Visualisation, November 3-21
  • Scientific Software Development Toolbox, December
  • Topics in CFD, December 1-19

Kind regards
Anders Hast
Director of SeSE
ps. Please note that it is possible to register to get news about courses via our subscribe function:

Call for participation: SeSECall2014A.pdf


The bioinformatics community is adopting novel cloud computing technologies to cope with the challenges set forth by complex data integration tasks and NGS data masses. The hackathon will focus on next challenges that cloud adoption poses: massively distributed data processing frameworks such as Hadoop, distributed cloud databases and distributed bioinformatics applications.

The event will continue from topics raised during the previous hackathon in March in Finland where we familiarised ourselves with the relevant questions of Hadoop based data processing and proceeded to benchmark different deployment scenarios, some bioinformatics tools and generic cloud computing tools.

The next steps are: proceeding into bioinformatics specific computational challenges (mapping, variant calling, etc.) and discussing the mechanisms that allow easy deployment of new tools into a cloud platform (CloudBioLinux, VM images, Chef, etc.).

The event is aimed at bioinformaticians and software developers who are using or planning to use Hadoop or similar cloud computing frameworks. It will be organised around practical problem solving and group work.
The event is organized by the EU COST Action SeqAhead (, and kindly sponsored by UPPMAX ( and eSSENCE (
Organisers: Ola Spjuth, Aleksi Kallio, Eija Korpelainen.

Umeå: HPC2N Symposium — Inauguration of Abisko, May 31, 2012

Umeå University, May 31, 2012

High Performance Computing Center North cordially invites you to participate in the inauguration of Abisko, the new HPC2N supercomputer system. The morning program offers a tutorial and the afternoon program includes presentations by scientists using Abisko, state-of-the-art technical and R&D overviews and the formal inauguration of Abisko.

The procurement of Abisko was made possible through a grant from the Swedish National Metacenter VR/SNIC and the support of Umeå University.

Dead-line for registration: May 21 at 12.00.
There is no conference fee but remember that the number of seats for all events are limited, so register as soon as possible.

Most welcome!
Bo Kågström, HPC2N Director
Marianne Sommarin, Chairperson of the HPC2N Board

Links to program and registration form:

8th IEEE International Conference on eScience – CALL FOR WORKSHOPS

8th IEEE International Conference on eScience
October 8-12, 2012
Chicago, IL, USA

The 8th IEEE eScience conference (e-Science 2012), sponsored by the IEEE Computer Society’s Technical Committee for Scalable Computing (TCSC), will be held in Chicago Illinois from 8-12th October 2012. The eScience 2011 conference is designed to bring
together leading international and interdisciplinary research communities, developers, and users of eScience applications and enabling IT technologies. Continue reading

8th IEEE International Conference on eScience – CALL FOR PAPERS

8th IEEE International Conference on eScience
October 8-12, 2012
Chicago, IL, USA

Researchers in all disciplines are increasingly adopting digital tools, techniques and practices, often in communities and projects that span disciplines, laboratories, organizations, and national boundaries. The eScience 2012 conference is designed to bring together leading international and interdisciplinary research communities, developers, and users of eScience applications and enabling IT technologies. The conference serves as a forum to present the results of the latest applications research and product/tool developments and to highlight related activities from around the world. Also, we are now entering the second decade of eScience and the 2012 conference gives an opportunity to take stock of what has been achieved so far and look forward to the challenges and opportunities the next decade will bring. Continue reading

Uppsala: Registration to CSC2012 – This summer in Uppsala

The 35th CERN School of Computing will be held at the Uppsala University, Sweden
from Monday 13th of August to Friday 24th August 2012

Programme highlights
The CERN School of Computing 2011 is organised around 3 thematic themes, each theme comprising lectures and exercises.

  • Do you know how to bridge Grids and Clouds using virtualization technology?
  • Is it possible to simplify LHC physics analysis using virtual machine?
  • How can reliable storage services be built from unreliable hardware?
  • Why are tapes still used in high energy physics data storage?
  • How can I write code for tomorrow’s hardware, today?
  • Do you want to see your software with attacker’s eyes?
  • Can you hack your own code?
  • Do you know what do ‘code injection’ and ‘integer overflow’ have in common?
  • What’s so special about High Energy Physic’s data format?
  • What are the key statistical methods used in physics data analysis?

All the answers at CSC2012 Continue reading