Forty nine students from sixteen countries attended the seventh edition of the Summer School on Ontological Engineering and the Semantic Web (SSSW 2009), which took place in Cercedilla, Spain on 5-11 July. The event, founded and directed by Prof Enrico Motta, is the latest in the successful and groundbreaking series of SSSW summer schools, which started back in 2003, as part of the activities of the OntoWeb Network Consortium. Presented by leading researchers in the field, the Summer School on Ontological Engineering and the Semantic Web represents an opportunity for postgraduate students to equip themselves with the range of theoretical, practical, and collaboration skills necessary for full engagement with the challenges involved in developing Ontologies and Semantic Web applications. From the very beginning the school pioneered an innovative pedagogical approach, combining the practical with the theoretical, and adding teamwork and a competitive element to the mix. Thus, tutorial/lecture material is augmented with hands-on practical workshops and in addition students are also organized in teams and work on a mini-project during the week. Prizes are awarded to the best projects at the end of the week.
SSSW 2009 experienced a record number of applications, which testifies to the enduring significance of the school, an event that over the years has become a role model for several other initiatives.