QUARTZ is a four-year programme, led by the Professor Massimo Melucci, from the University of Padova, designed to further research into information access and retrieval (IAR). In less than 30 years, the world has largely moved from the use of libraries and paper-based search processes to relying heavily on digital processing technology to provide us with instant answers. Melucci explains: 'Now, as people become ever more acquainted with using the web to find information, they are progressively using it to solve ever-more complex information problems.' He adds: 'Web search engines have evolved and have been tailored to assist people find simple, mostly factual information in response to simple queries, but this is less useful when people are using such information to make life-changing decisions about health, finance and international politics, for instance.' The aim of the programme is to train 13 early stage researchers (ESRs) in the application of the quantum mechanical framework to the problem of better interpreting the research needs of users and returning relevant information from a mass of unlinked and unclassified mixed media.