From June, 16th to June, 18th the Transition Conference of the ERA-Net SNOWMAN took place in Vienna, Austria, attended by more than 50 people from all across Europe. The conference was started with the Funding Recommendation Meeting of the Steering Committee for SNOWMAN’s 2nd Call and it ended with the SNOWMAN self-maintained funding Network inauguration. At least 5 countries will continue the way begun under the ERA-Net phase of the network. Among other tasks regarding dissemination aspects, especially, the new network will prepare a 3rd Call of SNOWMAN for being launched in 2010.
The SNOWMAN Final Conference on the afternoon of June, 16th focused the story of SNOWMAN from sketch to achievements and highlighted the main aspects of such cooperating community in Europe. This part of the conference was opened by Mr. Andreas Pichler from the Austrian Ministry for Agriculture, Forestry, Environment and Water Management (BMLFUW). Birgit de Boissezon, Head of Unit for “Horizontal aspects and coordination” of the European Commission’s DG Research presented the ERA-Net scheme and its implementation in the field of environmental research. The clear result of the day was that SNOWMAN did deliver more than originally planned within the contract with the European Commission. It especially succeeded in launching not only one, but two coordinated calls for research. All in all, the ERA-Net SNOWMAN was a success story!
One major part of the Transition Conference was the SNOWMAN Science Day on June, 17th. Opened by keynote speaker Bob Harris (University of Sheffield/UK), who referred in his presentation “From Science to Policy… and vice versa” to various problems in communication, the barriers, we all have in mind, and those things needed to overcome the existing hurdles. Meanwhile, the second keynote speaker Robert Bood (FairSights/NL) called the meeting participants’ attention on the way we on planet Earth learn and all the diverse obstacles we have to take. But focus of the day have been the results achieved by the 6 research projects funded under SNOWMAN’s 1st Call. These were presented by: Magnus Bergknut (Umeå University/Sweden) for PERSPEC, Gorana Rampazzo Todorovic (BOKU Vienna/Austria) for IOPSIM, Jerome Payet (SETEMIP/France) for MUSA, Frank Volkering (Tauw bv/the Netherlands) for ENACT, Markus Puschenreiter (BOKU Vienna/Austria) for SUMATECS and Thomas Track (Dechema e.V./Germany) for Rejuvenate. Dominique Darmendrail from the COMMON FORUM, as representative of the SNOWMAN stakeholders, not only presented conclusions to the ERA-Net SNOWMAN, but also recommendations to the new SNOWMAN Network with regard to the dissemination of existing knowledge.
The SNOWMAN Concluding Report will in its online version, to be accessed via the homepage address, directly, include the meetings’ agenda as well as all presentations of the SNOWMAN Final Conference and SNOWMAN Science Day.