Earth Surface Processes Institute (ESPIn) 2021


ESPIn 2021 is a an 8-day immersive online training experience for 25 graduate students, postdoctoral fellows, and/or early career faculty. ESPIn is designed to allow participants to make advances on critical earth surface processes research questions by teaching cyberinfrastructure skills. ESPIn will offer virtual hands-on training in numerical modeling, best programming practices, open source software development, collaborative coding and version control, Landlab and pymt, high performance computing, and model uncertainty quantification.

Curriculum - a combination of doing and learning:

  • Team projects
  • Open Source Modeling and Model Design
  • Introduction to the Shell
  • Introduction to Version Control with git and GitHub
  • The Anaconda Distribution
  • Basics of Python Programming
  • Existing Models and Toolkits for Modeling Earth Surface Processes
  • Python Programming for ESP Scientists
  • Mapping and GIS functionality and Python
  • Python for Model Developers
  • The Basic Model Interface
  • High-Performance Computing
  • How Good Is My Model?

ESPIn will start with 'big idea' poster presentations of all participants, these will help with forming small teams interested in similar topics. Several days will be dedicated to working in small teams on authentic research, data analysis, and coding projects. Participants can also work on developing and advancing their own research codes. In addition, there will be dedicated time for a local field trip, peer-to-peer networking, and professional development. A mix of experienced scientists, visiting faculty, software engineers, and research computing experts will provide instruction. Get a taste of the more technical skill content being covered by our team by checking out our past and future webinars and lectures. ESPIn will conclude with team presentations on code advances and research outcomes, and set up participants to continue to develop ideas.


Draft agenda will be uploaded soon.


  • Irina Overeem
  • Mark Piper
  • Nicole Gasparini
  • Leilani Arthurs
  • Benjamin Campforts
  • Faculty Guest Instructors (TBD)


Please fill out this Google form for application (deadline March 22nd, 2021): now closed

Prepare one document (pdf) containing the following sections:

1) Motivation statement for attendance (250 words max): Why are you interested in earth surface process modeling? What research questions are you working on? Does your own research involve models. What experience do you have in numerical modeling and data analysis? What models or programming languages and skills do you already know? What do you want to learn?

2) Statement on how your participation contributes to diversity and inclusion (150 words max) In your diversity statement you can possibly explain how you contributed to diversity in the past and how you envision your future science or coding skills to contribute to diversity.

3) Short Resume (Half of a page max) Be sure to list your proficiency with coding and model development

Applications will be evaluated based on: (i) scientific motivation, relevance of research interests and goals, diversity of disciplinary backgrounds and career stage (3pts.) (ii) coding experience or your motivation to ramp up coding skills (3pts.) (iii) your diversity statement (3pts.).

For questions regarding ESPIn application and general info, contact us at:

Important dates

  • February 15: Application opens
  • March 22: Application deadline now closed
  • April 22: Notification Date
  • June 8-17th: Summer Institute