ICFP Projets bibliographiques 2019

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This is the homepage for the ICFP Projets bibliographiques (library-based project) for the fall/winter semester 2019 in the ICFP master at ENS.

Responsable: Werner KRAUTH mail

Latest updates:

  • 10-13 September 2019: Individual meetings scheduled for week of 16 Sept. Please contact me if you're left out.
  • 31 August 2019: Website set up.


Idea of the library-based projects at ENS

  • Seek out, understand, classify relevant scientific literature on a chosen topic.
  • Enter in contact with an exciting research topic.
  • Enter in contact with a junior or senior professor/researcher at ENS or another accredited institution in the Greater Paris area, see her/him repeatedly.
  • Present the topic both in written form and orally in a scientifically sound and pedagogical manner.
  • Work in a curiosity-driven mode.
  • Learn essential skills.
  • If successful: Gain 6 ECTS.


  • YOU send mail to ME declaring that you're interested. Include in your mail what you are generally interested in, etc.
  • I will organize exchange and individual meetings with any interested student.
  • I may also organize a meeting with the ENS library staff.
  • YOU find a possible supervisor, and an interesting project (Come see me or other Professors if you need suggestions). This process should be finished by Oct. 5, 2019.
  • YOU obtain written consent by ICFP staff (me), by Oct. 12, 2019 that this choice is OK.
  • YOU organize regular meetings or other exchange with your advisor and with me, if necessary.
  • YOU Immediately start reading.
  • YOU send intermediate half-page report by 16 Nov 2019.
  • YOU send in the final report by 08 January 2020 midnight.
  • YOU will defend your project on 21 / 22 / 23 Jan 2020.

DO's and DON'Ts

  • A library-based project is (usually) about reading a few original research papers. Usually, you will have to branch out to other papers, books, etc. Usually, you will discuss with your supervisor, other professors, senior students, etc.
  • Original research papers can have been written anytime in the 19th, 20th or 21st century.
  • Some projects ask you to read and understand papers from different periods, and using different approaches (theoretical, experimental, observational, computational...).
  • A library-based project is normally not about a chapter or so from a text book.
  • A library-based project needs you to connect with your supervisor and (normally) with the ICFP staff (me), on a regular basis.
  • A library-based project is all about overview/context and your ability to synthesize: Besides the papers there is what professors and researchers, and especially your supervisor, tell you about them.
  • A library-based project is difficult, yet very exciting.
  • A library-based project can be the source of much frustration, and of great satisfaction.
  • A library-based project, just as your other courses, may influence your career choices.
  • A library-based project is not a programming assignment (although you might write a little code to understand things).
  • A library-based project is certainly not an internship (stage). This means that, for example, you should not spend three months understanding a single equation, or a single page of an article that are too difficult for you. Try to understand what the equation means: Ask your supervisor. Go beyond the equation! Understand the context!
  • A library-based project is not journalism: You need to understand the scientific questions quite in detail.
  • Plagiarism will not be tolerated, and you cannot do your library-based project with a member of your (extended) family.

Planning (provisional)

  • Sep 3, 2019 - PrĂ©sentation of the project by Kris van Houcke
  • Sep 3 - 13, 2019 - Message of intent (YOU to ME)
  • Sep 13 - October 5, 2019 - Mail exchange/Meetings with ICFP staff/ potential supervisors (YOU and ME)
  • Oct 5, 2019 - Project all set up (mail to ME, hard deadline)
  • Oct 8, 2019 - Acceptance/Rejection of project (ME to YOU)
  • Nov 16, 2019 - One-page intermediate report (YOU to ME)
  • Jan 8, 2020 (midnight) - Due date of report (YOU to ME) - hard deadline
  • Jan 21 / 22 / 23 January 2020 - Oral defense ("soutenance") of the project (YOU to JURY)

Report / Defense (soutenance)

  • The report is limited to 15 pages (including references), in correct English, and in scientific style. You should have it re-read by others.
  • Additionally, you will provide a signed anti-plagiarism declaration. This document will be provided in due time. By this you certify that the report is entirely written by yourself, and that you cited all your sources.
  • The report must contain an introduction, a development, and a conclusion/outlook.
  • The oral presentation lasts 15 min (in English), and it must be comprehensible to ICFP Prof (me) and to the outside expert.
  • There are 10 min of questions. Anything you have written or said is open to scrutiny.
  • Besides the content of the report and the presentation, the jury may ask questions of context.
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