34th Meeting of the ESS Council – Report

SE presidency event 20 June
ESS DG Helmut Schober addressing the crowd, including members of the ESS Council, at one of the events held in the framework of Sweden's presidency to the EU council. Image: Ulrika Hammarlund/ESS

The 34th meeting of the ESS Council took place on 21-22 June at ESS in Lund.

This time, the meeting was intertwined with a few visits organised by ESS in connection with the programme that Sweden has been rolling out for the Swedish Presidency of the Council of the European Union.
Some of the events taking place in Lund at the University focused on topics of relevance for ESS and its role in the European landscape, from open science to innovation.
During the visits to ESS, members of the ESS Council had the opportunity to meet with representatives from other European research infrastructures and policy makers at national and international levels.
(Read more about recent events here: https://europeanspallationsource.se/article/2023/06/22/ess-joins-swedens-programme-presidency-council-eu)

During the Council meeting, the Director General presented a status update of the construction project and of all the activities that are currently ongoing in order to complete the project and start the Scientific User programme at the end of 2027.Along with the achievements, the management equally emphasised the challenges ahead in order to continue to deliver the project according to the re-baseline plan.

The Council unanimously acknowledged the excellent progress in the construction of the ESS facility. Also, the Council praised the many initiatives implemented by the ESS management in a variety of areas, from project management to processes to organisational culture.
On behalf of the Council, I congratulate the ESS staff and in-kind partners for the excellent progress,” says Beatrix Vierkorn-Rudolph, chair of the Council. “Through the visit of the site we could see that the construction of the facility, from installation to testing and commissioning, is progressing as planned.”

RI conf people

Visitors from the Research Infrastructure conference held in Lund on 19 June. Far right in this picture, ESS Council Vice-Chair Kurt Clausen.

Image: Ulrika Hammarlund/ESS

The Council re-appointed the Chair of the Project Advisory Committee (PAC), Mark Reichanadter, and PAC members: Diane Hatton, Lina Rodriguez Rodrigo, Reinhard Brinkmann and Winfried Petry for a two-year term starting 1 July 2023.New appointed members of PAC are: Alain Menelle (LLB, France), Karen White (ORNL, USA), Stephen Jago (STFC, UK) and Thomas Klinger (Max-Planck Institute, Germany), for a two-year term starting 1 July 2023.

The Council thanked the Chair and Vice Chair, who had come to the end of their mandate, for their outstanding contributions to the project and agreed on re-convening in the coming week to elect the next Chair and Vice-Chair.“I would like thank the chair Beatrix Vierkorn-Rudolph and vice chair Kurt Clausen for their relentless support to the ESS organisation,” says Helmut Schober, Director General. “For an organisation like ESS, the collaboration between theManagement teamGoverning body and Host States has been instrumental in everything we have accomplished so far.” Through our collaboration, we will deliver to Sweden, Denmark and Europe outstanding science and innovation for sustainability.

The Council highly appreciated all the work carried out by ESS, together with its governing and advisory bodies, to understand the influence of currency rate fluctuation on ESS finances. This work will inform the decision on the funding request to be discussed at the Council meeting that will take place in December in Switzerland at in-kind partner Paul Scherrer Institute - PSI.

Beatrix and Giovanna

Council Chair Beatrix Vierkorn-Rudolph and Science Director Giovanna Fragneto with other members of the Council and ESS, on the ESS site.

Image: Ulrika hammarlund/ESS