Learning to Discover

(School of Fine Arts. Cuenca Campus. October 7, 2014)


Progress requires researchers to know the current state of knowledge and its boundaries to try to move them so that the knowledge gains ground with original contributions that, on many occasions, to be bold and courageous, especially if they hit, as has been frequently in history, with complacency and inertia in some areas of the Sciences, Arts, Humanities, Engineering and Architecture. Important advances in knowledge in its different branches have meant almost always a break, partial or total, with its condition at all times.

The research may be defined as an activity which tries to discover truth. The truth that is on the appearances, on the effects, on the causes, on the observed, on the imagined,… The achievement of new knowledge may have or not an application immediately to the improvement of the society. In case of not having, knowledge may be the first step for other researcher to discover other knowledge that it will be directly applicable, or not yet, for the society. And so on. The final objective of the science is discovering new knowledge. The researcher’s motivation is discovering, without having to obsess over immediate application. Sooner or later scientific discoveries eventually redound to the benefit of society, but a researcher has to mind first the beauty and pleasure of discovering and only if it happens, the satisfaction of that his/her scientific discoveries are applied either by himself/herself or by others.

The doctoral training of a student has as main goal to learn, using systematic methods, besides his/her imagination and intuition, to discover, which is the same that learning to create since a discovery is a creation, sometimes a recreation, of the discovered. A researcher is a creator. The PhD student learns to research. But to progress in the research is necessary to have previous knowledge, to enhance them, to confirm them or to eliminate them. The PhD student must acquire the knowledge related to previous and current state of his/her thesis and the work’s methods. In summery in the PhD student mergers his/her student’s conditions that acquire knowledge and his/her researcher’s condition that discovers and creates knowledge. So the PhD student is a mix between teaching and investigation. The development of the Thesis is a gradual transition from the learning of knowledge generated by other to his/her whole creation of knowledge. It is a laborious process in which the PhD student needs help and comprehension.

Perhaps for these specific characteristics of doctoral studies has been and will continue to be a lot of rules designed to regulate these studies so that the PhD student feels supported, guided and directed, but never undermine their right to improvise, to create, to risk, to ascertain and to wrong. The failure, as the success, has to be a right of any researcher. It is curious that the success tends to follow failure and a failure to a success. The failure and the success of the researcher and of the PhD student are two sides of the same coin, the same process. They are inseparable mates of the PhD student on his/her road to the discovery.

R.D. 99/2011 January 28, which currently regulates the doctoral studies, directs the Doctoral Schools doctoral training through doctoral programs and establishes the functions and powers of these Schools. This R.D. in its article 9, paragraph 4 indicates, referring to the Doctoral Schools:

The Schools plan the necessary offer of activities related to the training and development of the PhD student, realized by collaborators from the universities and promoter institutions with the help of external professionals, professors or invited researchers.


In the interpretation of the above text the International Doctoral School of the University of Castilla–La Mancha (EID-UCLM), assumes, by delegation of the Vice-Chancellor for Research and Scientific Policy, of EID-UCLM depends, the organization of the current IV Doctoral Conference of UCLM which will take place on October 7, 2014 on the Cuenca Campus from 10.00 to 20.00.

Previously to the existence of EID-UCLM were held I, II and III Doctoral Conferences of the UCLM, with the same objective of contributing to the training and development of the PhD student, and were successful participation and results, as we expect it to be also those of the present edition and all that followed.

The IV Doctoral Conference of UCLM, as previous, are directed by members of the university community of UCLM and members of Spanish and foreign universities, it means, professors, students, especially PhD students, and administrative and services staff from any university. Likewise interested people of public or private research centers are invited to participate. This conference tries to be an opportunity to create between participants, suggestions, ways of working, different materials and methods, reviews and any contribution which could help to improve the doctoral studies in general and UCLM in particular. With this goal two presentations will take place, followed by discussion, related to the topic of the Conference and a panel discussion on the current researcher and the professional future of the PhD student in which PhD student and doctors will intervene so that the five branches of knowledge are represented.

The PhD student enrolled UCLM or any other university may wish to submit an abstract and an explicative poster, which is for the dissemination of the work being carried out on his doctorate. Of all the posters two prizes to the best will be awarded for each of the five branches of knowledge (Arts and Humanities, Sciences, Health Sciences, Engineering and Architecture and Social and Juridical Sciences)as is established in the call’s basis. The ten prized posters will attend for the awards to be convened on the occasion of the III Doctoral Conference group of nine universities which are unique in their respective autonomous community (G-9), to be held in Almagro (Ciudad Real) on 5 and 6 November 2014. Likewise, the exposed posters will attend two separate awards, one from the Campus of International Excellency (CYTEMA) and the other from UCLM-ENRESA Chair. All posters will be published in the Book of Acts of this Conference.

In addition to the general objectives of these IV Conference indicated above, are intended to achieve the following specific objectives:

  • Exchange ideas and experiences among PhD students of different branches of knowledge, with the participation of professors and students, encouraging discussion and communication.
  • Highlight the current problems that PhD students meet and propose solutions.
  • Being able to adequately provide and disseminate the results of research works carried out for the development of doctoral theses.
  • Recognize by UCLM the work done by granting the above awards.
  • Promoting the creative capacities of study and research among students of the different degrees.
  • Promoting new ideas for research in various areas.