Summer Retreat 2023

The VMI Summer Retreat is for all scientific staff of the ETH Computer Science department. This year, we’re going to the beautiful town of Laax, Switzerland. We’re looking forward to great scientific exchange, networking and socialising!

Register here!

Date: September 9-12 and 14-17, 2023.

The retreat will be split up into two events. The retreat is fully supported by the department. No need to take vacation days to attend (but let your supervisor know that you will attend once we confirm your registration).

Location: Laax. Laax is surrounded by majestic mountain peaks in Graubünden. It’s the perfect location for exploring crystal clear lakes with a Caribbean-like feeling, the craggy rock formations of the Rhine Gorge, as well as the hiking trails of the Sardona Tectonic Arena UNESCO World Heritage Site.

We’ll have plenty of fun activities to choose from, from hiking, biking and river rafting to visiting gorges and glacier mills!

Laax is just 2.5 hours from Zürich. We’ll be staying at the Laax Wellness Hostel 3000 (with a spa!) in four-person bedrooms.

Cost: CHF 100. Except for this contribution, the retreat is sponsored by the department. The participation fee includes transportation and accommodation, as well as some meals and leisure activities. Alcoholic beverages are not included.

Who can participate? All members of the scientific staff of the D-INFK department (PhD students, postdocs, research assistants, oberassistents etc.). You do not need to be a VMI member.
There are 64 spots (32 per retreat).


We will stay in Laax for four days. The goal is to get to know each other, to extend the scientific network within our department, and to have a great time!

We will have a scientific programme, social activities and leisure time.

The scientific programme will consist of presentations and discussions by the participants on a variety of technical and non-technical topics, eg. teaching, efficient time management, student supervision, research methodology, etc. We encourage interactive formats, such as discussions and round tables. We’ll also have lightning talks and “scientific speed dating”, where you can explain your research to other participants.

For the social activities, we’ll split up into groups so that everyone can do the things they enjoy, whether it be hiking, canyoning, relaxing by the lake, or playing board games or visiting the hostel spa. We have lots of ideas for fun activities, so rest assured you won’t be bored!

Photos from previous retreat

Check out the photos of the 2022 VMI summer retreat in Interlaken and the 2021 VMI summer retreat in Scuol, to see what we got up to in previous years!


This retreat is organised by Anu, Duong, Felix, Giovanni, Linard, and Matilda, your fellow PhD students and postdocs in the ETH computer science department. If you have questions, please contact us at

Rhine Gorge: Wikimedia Commons, Gabrielle Merk CC-BY-SA 4.0
Crestasee: Wikimedia Commons, Paebi CC-BY-SA 4.0