In Japanese, the word ‘do’ means quite literally ‘way’, in the sense of ‘way of doing things’ or ‘philosophy’ (like in JuDo, ‘the way of Gentleness’). Here I try to summarize my Science-do, or my way of thinking Science.
Learning. Studying new topics is my main drive and motivation for doing Science. I do my best to explore new concepts and read about new ideas and theories to be a good scientist and a better human being. The more I know, the better I am. Quoting Bruce Lee: ‘All type of knowledge eventually means self-knowledge.’.
Building bridges. I think that applying ideas from one field to another is what makes Science exciting. Interdisciplinarity is not just a fancy word for grant application but an effective way of thinking. I try to dig deep into a few topics and become an expert in those few fields, but I try never to forget to keep an open mind.
Cooperation over competition. I do my best to share my code, data, and ideas. I try not to be shy and to talk and discuss my scientific opinions with everyone, to thoroughly analyze my thoughts and convictions to change and improve them at any time. Learning from others as much as possible, and in turn, try to share my expertise (if any!). To do this, it helps to keep in mind that papers are the results of our work, not our goal.
It’s a journey, dare and have fun. Often we fail big time, sometimes we tremendously succeed. Success sets the stones of our career, failure teaches us some valuable lessons. Like in the poem of Constantine Cavafy, I try not to be afraid of setting out for my Ithaca, knowing that eventually the ultimate prize is each moment of the journey itself.
Inclusion, and the great value of diversity. Sometime given for granted, inclusion can be often overlooked. My best efforts are directed to create a safe space, where everyone feels welcome to speak up, join, participate and feel valued, irrespective of religion, gender, sexual orientation, ethnicity. Diversity and inclusion are powerful keys for our future!