2023 VSS Workshop for PhD Students and Postdocs

Strategies for Funding your Research Ideas Around the Globe

Saturday, May 20, 12:45 – 2:15 pm, Sabal/Sawgrass

Moderator: Krystel Huxlin, University of Rochester, USA
Panelists: Reuben Rideaux, University of Sydney; Martin Rolfs, Humboldt-Universität zu Berlin; Miriam Spering, University of British Columbia;

Success in obtaining grant funding for your research ideas is a hallmark of success in academia, and increasingly, in private industry. This workshop features panelists who will provide perspectives on strategies to attain funding success. Topics will include: what constitutes a fundable research idea, opportunities and strategies for developing grantsmanship as a graduate student or postdoc – including those pertinent to diversity, how granting opportunities differ in different countries, how grants are evaluated by granting agencies, and best practices for reacting and responding to grant evaluations in a manner that ultimately leads to funding success.

Reuben Rideaux

University of Sydney

Reuben Rideaux is an ARC DECRA Fellow at the University of Sydney, and an Honorary Senior Research Fellow at the Queensland Brain Institute. Prior to this, he was a Leverhulme Early Career Fellow at the University of Cambridge and a PhD student at the Australian National University. He combines computational modelling, neuroimaging, and psychophysics to study perception and cognition. He has a particular interest in developing new methods for understanding brain function, such as bio-inspired explainable AI, high resolution functional MR spectroscopy, and neural decoding. He leads the ECR subcommittee of the Australian Cognitive Neuroscience Society, and regularly speaks about his work to research groups, clinicians, and the media. In addition to supervision of graduate and postgraduate students, he enjoys participating in public outreach activities aimed at communicating the importance sensory and cognitive neuroscience research to the public, e.g., Cambridge BrainFest, and encouraging school students consider a career in neuroscience research, e.g., BrainBee.

Martin Rolfs

Humboldt-Universität zu Berlin

Martin Rolfs heads the Active Perception and Cognition lab at the Department of Psychology at Humboldt-Universität zu Berlin. He obtained his PhD from the University of Potsdam in 2007, for which he received the Heinz Heckhausen Award, and was a postdoc at Université Paris Descartes and a Marie Curie fellow at New York University and Aix-Marseille Université. In 2012, he established a junior research group at the Bernstein Center for Computational Neuroscience before, he was appointed Heisenberg Professor at Humboldt-Universität zu Berlin in 2018. His research is funded by the German Research foundation (DFG) and the European Research Council (ERC), and he is a core PI at Berlin’s Cluster of Excellence Science of Intelligence. 

Miriam Spering

University of British Columbia

Miriam Spering is Associate Professor in Ophthalmology & Visual Sciences at the University of British Columbia (UBC). She also is Director of the Graduate Program in Neuroscience and Associate Dean of Graduate and Postdoctoral Education in UBC’s Faculty of Medicine. Before moving to Canada, Spering completed her undergraduate (Univ Heidelberg, Diploma in Psychology) and graduate education (Univ Giessen, PhD in Psychology) in Germany and postdoctoral training in the US (NYU, Psychology & Neuroscience). Spering has a notable record of scientific achievements in the vision sciences, with a research focus on eye movements, perception-action interrelations, multisensory integration, and disorders of the sensorimotor system. The recipient of many awards for research and mentorship, she has broad experience in senior academic and research leadership roles, advancing graduate training, interdisciplinarity, and wellbeing, equity, diversity, and inclusivity. Spering is funded by several of the major Canadian funding agencies, and has extensive experience mentoring students to obtain their own fellowship and grant funding.

Krystel Huxlin

University of Rochester

Krystel Huxlin is the James V. Aquavella Professor of Ophthalmology and Associate Chair for Research at the University of Rochester (UR)’s Flaum Eye Institute. She also serves as the Associate Director of UR’s Center for Visual Science and co-Director of its Training program. She is a member of the Neuroscience Graduate Program Executive Committee, and an Ombudsperson for graduate students and postdocs at the UR Medical Center. Huxlin earned her bachelors (1991) and doctorate (1994) degrees in Neuroscience at the University of Sydney, Australia. She was an Australian NHMRC C.J. Martin postdoctoral fellow at UR before joining its Ophthalmology faculty (1999). Her work seeks to understand how visual functions can be restored after damage to the visual system, as well as to characterize the properties of, and mechanisms underlying different forms of vision restoration. She holds 10 patents, was the inaugural President of the Rochester SFN Chapter, is an editor at eLife and Journal of Vision, and a member of the VSS Board of Directors.