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Thursday, 28 April 2011

Amsterdam Registrations Accelerate!

Registrations for the SusChem Amsterdam Stakeholder event have accelerated over the Easter break. But organisers are looking for as wide a participation as possible as SusChem debates major new programmes that could have a significant impact for the sustainable chemistry community in Europe.

The Amsterdam event comes at a key moment in the development of SusChem’s proposals for its involvement in European Innovation Partnerships (EIPs) and the next European Research and Innovation Framework programme.

“The SusChem board feel that stakeholder consultation on the SusChem proposals and recommendations is of great strategic importance,” explains Ger Spork, Innovation Manager at Cefic and SusChem coordinator. “The Amsterdam meeting is key in terms of both timing and getting stakeholder input on how the European sustainable chemistry community can make a leading contribution to addressing some of society’s major challenges.”

“Although we are always open to receive input from our stakeholders at any time, the Amsterdam event will be the main forum for debate. Participants can learn more about both the EU 2020 programme and the SusChem proposals, but also make a direct input to the planning,” continues Spork.

Our Beurs van Berlage venue is limited to 150 participants and current registration rates indicate that the event will reach the maximum capacity, so to avoid disappointment register now !

EIPs explained
One of the main aims of the event is to give an insight on the aims and objectives of EIPs. Following an outline of SusChem’s proposed role in achieving the EU2020 agenda objectives from SusChem chairman Paul-Joel Derian, delegates will get a briefing on EIPs from both the perspective of the European Commission and a Member State.

The Commission view will be given by Waldemar Kütt a senior member of Research and Innovation Commissioner Maire Geoghegan-Quinn’s cabinet. Dr. Kütt obtained his PhD from the Technical University in Aachen in solid state physics and semiconductor technology before working as a technology and innovation consultant with a focus on patent licensing deals and financing of start-ups. He joined DG Research in 1997 and is currently responsible for the co-ordination of innovation and SME policies in the life sciences area.

A Member State point of view will be described by Renée Bergkamp who is currently Director-General of Enterprise and Innovation at the Netherlands Ministry of Economic Affairs, Agriculture and Innovation. She graduated in law at the VU University in Amsterdam and began her government career in the Ministry of Agriculture, Nature and Fisheries with subsequent appointments including time at the Ministry of Justice and further senior roles in the Ministry of Economic Affairs and in the Ministry of Agriculture.

EIP panel
After coffee the morning session will conclude with a panel discussion on how to ensure Member State engagement, support and participation with EIPs where Waldemar Kütt will be joined by the President of Dow Benelux Gerard Van Harten and a number of Member State representatives. The panel discussion will be facilitated by Willy de Backer.

Gerard van Harten was appointed President and Chairman of the Board of Dow Benelux, responsible for all Dow locations in Belgium, The Netherlands and Luxembourg, in March 2002. Gerard joined Dow in 1977 as a Process Engineer at the Dow Terneuzen site after graduating in Chemical Engineering from the Technical Universite Twente. His career in Dow has seen him alternating between positions of increasing responsibility in Terneuzen and Dow’s Freeport, Texas facilities.

The afternoon session in Amsterdam is dedicated to workshops on the proposed SusChem programme for EIPs. Details of the proposed projects and the session itself will be covered in a subsequent news blog. More programme details can be found on the SusChem website.

Thursday, 14 April 2011

IYC Art Exhibition at Amsterdam Meeting

SusChem stakeholders will have the opportunity to take an exclusive preview of an international art exhibition during the SusChem Annual Stakeholder event in Amsterdam on 17 May.

During the lunch interval the exhibition “Our Children on Water” will take place. Created by the Royal Society of Chemistry (RSC) as a contribution to the International Year of Chemistry (IYC) this unique international art exhibition consists of artwork created by children from three African and six European countries depicting the role that water plays in their lives.

The three African countries involved are South Africa, Kenya and Ethiopia and the photo below ((C)Zoe Heaton) shows children from Abyot Public School in Ethiopia getting involved.

The artwork has been produced under the title 'Water: Refreshment or Responsibility?' The resulting collection of artwork displays breathtaking imagination and shows children's views on water from many different, thought-provoking perspectives. The artwork in addition helps to draw attention to the role of chemists in industry and academia in providing safe and clean water around the world.

European tour
The exhibition will take place in Beurs Van Berlage in Amsterdam on 17 May. Following exhibition at the SusChem Amsterdam event "Children on Water" will tour major European cities including London, Frankfurt, Prague, Rome and Barcelona throughout 2011 in collaboration with a number of European and African chemical societies. The official launch for the exhibition will be held at the European Parliament in Brussels in June.

The "Our Children on Water" project is a high profile exhibition that serves to showcase the chemical community’s involvement in the pursuit of clean and safe water for everyone.