European Master in Biological and Chemical Engineering for a Sustainable Bioeconomy

Bioceb Summer school in Estonia, June 28th – July 2nd 2021

The First Bioceb Summer school took place in Estonia from June 28th to July 2nd 2021. Organized by Tallinn University of Technology in coordination with the Bioceb Consortium, the Summer school marked the end of the academic year for the 24 Bioceb students. The programme consisted in lectures and workshops, site visits, presentation of the Green Line Projects as well as cultural events. It was also the opportunity for the students to meet again after their Second semester at TalTech or AgroParisTech.

No less than 10 lecturers and invited professors from different countries (Estonia, United-Kingdom, India, Germany, Thailand, …) intervened during the Summer school, thus reflecting the international dimension of the Bioceb programme. They brought complementary highlights on different aspects of the Bioeconomy with a focus on sustainable and green chemistry. Key messages were delivered such as the need to talk about “greener chemistry” rather than “green chemistry”, to use organic waste but also to exploit plant physiologic mechanisms (metal accumulation, defense against insects, etc...) and diversity of marine resources. These topics led to stimulated discussions between the students and the speakers. A particular emphasis was also made on the economic aspects of the Bioeconomy in order to give the students the keys to carry out their professional plans. They were encouraged to stop thinking about traditional value chains but to favour synergies between different sectors. They learned that “breakthroughs are a result of fundamental understanding” and that “future managers need to have the potential to learn”.

The students visited different industrial sites and companies such as CombiWood and Estonian Cell (a Bioceb associated partner) as well as Tartu University Institute of Technology’s laboratories and TalTech’s Laboratory of Polymer Chemistry and Technology. On Thursday, the students enjoyed a nice traditional Estonian meal at the Viking village next Saula and then visited the Rakvere Castle. A good way to know more about Estonian History and traditions!

Another high point of the event was the meeting with Bioceb associated partners connected online from all over the world. Dr. Andrew John Hunt from Khon Kaen University moderated a workshop entitled “Elemental sustainability” and three other partners (Arterra Bioscience, Suez Canal University and INRAE) presented their activities during a dedicated session. Their presentations exemplified the value brought by associated partners in the Bioceb programme. Indeed, the 19 Bioceb associated partners are core actors of the training through the lectures they provide to the students, their involvement in the Green Line Projects, and all the opportunities they offer to help the students achieve their future career plans (internship, PhD thesis, entrepreneurship).

Friday afternoon was dedicated to the Green Line Projects presentation through a poster session. Each group prepared a poster summarizing the major advances brought during the academic year and the perspectives for the semester to come. Thanks to flash presentations they made online, the students could have real expert discussions with some GLP supervisors and invited Professors. A special thank to Professor Nicholas Gathergood from University of Lincoln who actively took part in the discussions all along the afternoon and trained the students to critical scientific analysis.

At the end of the presentations, a price was awarded to the best poster by a jury of Green Line Projects supervisors. The winner this year was GLP group 3 working on the combined selection of biomass and pretreatment for the sustainable production of fermentable sugars.

A warm thank you to all the participants of the Summer school and to Tallinn University of Technology for its organization. The students will now take some holidays and some of them will perform an internship during the Summer. In September, they will all continue their study track, either at AgroParisTech, Aalto University or University of Liège.

Find the detailed program of the 2021 Summer school:

Students’s Green Line Projects poster presentations are available here.
Bioceb students in front of Tallinn University of Technology
Visiting the company CombiWood at Helme
Hybrid lectures online and onsite
Associated partners session (presentation of Arterra Bioscience by F. Apone)
Lunch at the Viking village
Visiting Rakvere Castle
Canoo trip in Viikingite küla

- Updated July 2023 -