The Spokesperson of SpaceLife is Prof. Dr. R. Gerzer, director of the DLR Institute of Aerospace Medicine (Figure).
The Coordinator Dr. C. Hellweg is a scientist in the Radiobiology department of the Institute. She coordinates the activities of SpaceLife, including applicants’ selection, curriculum, evaluation and public relations).
The Secretary assists the coordinator in all administrative processes of SpaceLife, organization of the curriculum and support for the doctoral students (visa application, living space).
The thesis Supervisors at the DLR and the partner universities and scientists who conduct courses in the Research School form the SpaceLife Faculty. All faculty members are invited for a kick-off meeting before start of the Research School and for subsequent annual meetings.
During the kick-off meeting in 2009, a Faculty Panel of six members was elected to determine the curriculum of the 2009 SpaceLife Program. The Faculty Panel also forms the Selection Committee during the interview week and assists the Spokesperson and the Coordinator in the selection process.
The doctoral students in SpaceLife will have a scholarship contract with SpaceLife or an employment contract with the DLR or the partner universities. The Doctoral Candidates will enroll at their respective universities and apply for admission to doctoral studies. The doctoral candidate writes, together with the supervisors, a synopsis of the doctoral thesis containing the name of the student, the names and institutions of the Supervisors and of the Mentor, the title and description of the thesis, the designated start of the thesis, and a work plan including milestones, risk assessments and alternatives. University Supervisor's approval of the candidate as doctoral student will then be forwarded by the doctoral student to the SpaceLife Coordinator.
The TAC will be formed as described above. The doctoral students invite their TAC for their thesis presentations in the Students’ Workshop (1st, 4th and 6th semester) and arrange an independent meeting with the TAC during the first month of the thesis to discuss the subject and approach.
The doctoral students elect a Doctoral Spokesperson during the first Students’ Workshop. The Doctoral Spokesperson participates in meetings of the Faculty Panel or the full SpaceLife Faculty. In conflict situations, the Mentor and the Doctoral Spokesperson develop a solution together with the doctoral student and the Supervisors.
SpaceLife can make use of the infrastructure of the Institute of Aerospace Medicine, including the laboratories and meeting rooms of different sizes for the lectures and workshops. The internal communication, which is operated by the Coordinator and the Secretary, will be facilitated by means of an extranet teamsite accessible to all members of SpaceLife. The lectures and workshops will be transmitted online to the partners in Regensburg, Kiel and Magdeburg, using teleconference tools (webcam, microphone and loudspeaker). Doctoral students from the universities of Bonn and Cologne can attend the courses personally.
SpaceLife will be evaluated by questionnaires to the doctoral students, the Supervisors and the lecturers. Results of the evaluation will be discussed in SpaceLife Faculty meetings and the curriculum will be adapted accordingly.