Verbund.NRW Writing Retreat in Jülich
In the week from 9 to 13 October, the Verbund.NRW research fellows had the opportunity to intensively work on the writing process of their dissertation. In the beautiful surroundings of Haus Overbach in Jülich, the writing week offered a great opportunity to deal intensively with writing academic texts away from the hectic everyday life at university and away from private activities and to receive feedback from colleagues while exchanging experiences.
There were several hours per day to work on the writing projects in a structured way - the PhD students could try out and optimise different writing routines and learn how important concentrated work phases without distractions but also breaks are for progress.
At the end of the week, the PhD students came a lot closer to their individual goals, were able to produce text, structure it, gain more clarity about their data and what they would like to focus on.
It was also a week of mutual support, as the programme offered time for reflection, be it in the stand-up meeting in the morning, in the daily reflection in the afternoon or in the scheduled time for peer review and collegial consultation. It became clear that similar challenges are often faced, and solutions could be found for many hurdles. There was also a block for day-to-day business, for urgent tasks and emails that cannot wait until the next week - so that everyone could focus entirely on their goals in the remaining time.
Our doctoral students were happy to put their idea, which came up at the end of last year, into practice and about this fantastic opportunity to make good progress on their way to their PhDs.