TRUSS holds network-wide meetings approximately every 6 months. During these meetings, ESRs have an opportunity to practise their communication skills, and to receive academic and/or industrial training. More specifically, TRUSS runs postgraduate schools in the form of training weeks, which deliver intensive, highly focused modules in the 1st semester of the University calendar. This structure is deliberate, to enhance further a sense of collective learning, collegiality, and co-operation, with the longer term goal of potential collaborations being established among the ESRs, enhancing the network as a whole. Many such short courses are also offered to researchers from outside the network to broaden the impact of the training programme beyond the recruited ESRs. The venue for this training will change each year. The proposed structure for a typical training week offered to all ESRs is shown in the figure above and the contents are as follows:
- In years 1 and 2, it reviews the main formats of reliability analysis and provides an introduction to the general subject of assessment of structural safety in the research projects under investigation.
- In year 3, it provides business and entrepreneurship skills including Intellectual Property, Ethics and Exploitation.
Specialist modules allow ESRs to gather an understanding of structural, material and load modelling/monitoring/testing which is essential for updating load and resistance models, assessing structural safety and complete their independent research program. The structuring of the TRUSS research into two strands allows an element of group training within each. Contents are built in consultation with Doctoral Studies Panels.
These sessions are specifically designed to promote communication, creativity and entrepreneurial skills in academic researchers (including grant proposal writing, presentation skills and how to communicate ideas within industry).
Research seminars are interactive sessions that prepare the researchers to present their own work at other national and international events.
Innovation Workshop (including teamwork)
- In years 1 and 2, each group is given a real case study proposed by industry beneficiaries and they must present an oral and written solution. Each case study is presented to colleagues and experts from industry and academia in an interruptible forum.
- In year 3, the innovation workshop is imparted by TCD-UCD Innovation Academy.