Water, Ice and the Origin of Life in the Universe
Third Nordic-Hawaii Summer School
Iceland, 1 - 13 July 2015


The programme of the summer course can be downloaded as an .xls file here.

The summer school "Water, ice and the Origin of Life in the Universe", which will be held in Iceland from 1 to 13 July 2015, aims to give participants a thorough high-level introduction into the role of water in the evolution of life in the cosmos, starting from formation of water molecules in space and ending with evolution of the first organisms. It will bring together students and researchers from a multitude of different science branches, making it a truly multidisciplinary event. It is co-organised by the Nordic Network of Astrobiology, the University of Hawai'i at Manoa, the NASA Astrobiology Institute, the European Astrobiology Campus and the EU COST Action "Origins and Evolution of Life on Earth and in the Universe". Field studies on the colonisation of lava fields and glaciers will complement the lectures. The programme of the summer school comprises:

  • lectures by internationally leading scientists covering a broad range of subjects in astrobiology
  • investigation of colonisation of volcanic rocks and glaciers with in situ life detection techniques
  • excursions to geologically and biologically interesting sites (lava caves, new lava fields)
  • 2 poster sessions for students and early career scientists

A multitude of highly merited researchers have agreed to teach at the course (see the Programme page for details. The deadline for application is 15 March 2015 23:59:00 UTC.

The programme of the summer course can be downloaded as an .xls file here. Please also refer to the Programme webpage.

Fees and refunds
There are no fees charged for the course. But for students based in different countries different rules apply:

Selected students based in the US will get free accommodation, meals and excursions, but will have to find funding for their travel on their own.

Selected participants from other countries will, however have to fund their own travel, accommodation and meals. These participants will be charged a package rate, will be about EUR 1700,- (roughly USD 2000,-).

This course package fee covers

  • Accommodation in shared quadruple or double bedrooms with en-suite facilities from 30 June 2015 evening to 14 July 2015 morning
  • Breakfasts, Coffee breaks, lunches and dinners from 30 June 2015 evening to 14 July 2015 morning.
  • Excursions as specified in the programme
  • Transfer between the course venues
  • Farewell dinner
  • Course material

Bursaries are available for around 20 European Ph. D. students and early career scientists (up to 8 years after their first Ph. D.). Selected participants located in countries taking part in the the EU COST Action "Origins and Evolution of Life on Earth and in the Universe" (this covers most European Countries) will get a flat refund of around EUR 1100,-. The list of these countries can be inspected here. As of 1 January 2015 this includes: Austria, Belgium, Bulgaria, Croatia, Czech Republic, Denmark, Estonia, Finland, France, Germany, Greece, Hungary, Iceland, Ireland, Israel, Italy, Latvia, Lithuania, Netherlands, Norway, Poland, Purtugal, Romania, Serbia, Slovakia, Slovenia, Spain, Sweden, Switzerland, UK. Herein it is the country of the institution that the applicant is affiliated to, not the applicant's nationality that counts (i.e. an Australian applicant studying at a Swedish university would be eligible, a Swedish post-doc working at a Brazilian University would not). For participants located in Iceland, however, special rules of refund apply (please contact the organisers for details). The selection of the applicants to be funded will be made by the organisers after the deadline. Accepted participants will be informed about refund formalities after 15 March 2015. Please note that they will only get refunded after the course.

Unfortunately, there will be no funds available for participants from other countries. They can also apply, but will have to find the financial means for attending on their own. If you fall into that category and want to apply for alternative funding from other sources, we strongly recommend you to do so well before the application deadline. It might be too late to ask for funds after the decision of the evaluation committee.

Venue and Access
Please refer to the Venue and Access webpages for all information

The deadline for application is 20 March 2015 23:59:00 UTC. Please refer to the Application webpage for application procedures. Successful applicants will be notified in the first 2 weeks of April.

For all enquiries please contact the course organiser, Wolf Geppert, preferably by e-mail: wgeppert@hotmail.com or phone (++46-8-55378649). Please also refer to the practical infos and the other information webpages. Most necessary information is likely to be found there.

Velkomin til Íslands !

Sampling at lava field Glacier excursion Sampling at hot springs