2021 Nobel Prize in Physics goes to three members of Academia Europaea

The Nobel Prize 2021 in in Physics was awarded by the Royal Swedish Academy of Sciences “for ground-breaking contributions to our understanding of complex physical systems”, to three members of Academia Europaea.

Professor Syukuro Manabe MAE, Professor Klaus Hasselmann MAE, and Professor Giorgio Parisi MAE

Professor Syukuro Manabe MAE, Professor Klaus Hasselmann MAE, and Professor Giorgio Parisi MAE.

The membership of the AE is delighted to congratulate our longstanding members Professor Syukuro Manabe, who was elected to the Earth and Cosmic Sciences section in 1994, Professor Klaus Hasselmann, one of the founding members of the Academy and member since 1988, elected to the Earth and Cosmic Sciences section, and Professor Giorgio Parisi who was elected to the Physics and Engineering Sciences section in 2009.

Professor Paolo Papale, the Chair of the Earth and Cosmic Sciences section writes:

“Prof. Syukuro Manabe and Prof. Klaus Hasselmann, both members of the Earth and Cosmic Sciences section of the Academia Europaea, are co-winners of the Nobel Prize in physics for their “physical modelling of the Earth’s climate, quantifying variability and reliably predicting global warming.

The Academia Europaea expresses its most sincere congratulations to them, for such an achievement crowning extraordinary brilliant careers in science.”

Professor Pavel Exner, the Chair of the Physics and Engineering Sciences section writes:

“The AE Physics & Engineering Section is proud that its member, Professor Giorgio Parisi, was awarded today the Nobel Prize for Physics. The citation says that he was honoured “for the discovery of the interplay of disorder and fluctuations in physical systems from atomic to planetary scales”. This brief description included a number of brilliant results in quantum field theory, statistical mechanics and dynamics complex systems concerning, for instance, QCD evolution equations for parton densities known by the names of Altarelli and Parisi, the exact solution of the Sherrington–Kirkpatrick model of spin glasses, or the Kardar–Parisi–Zhang equation describing dynamic scaling of growing interfaces. He also managed to explain effects both common and unusual, such as the whirling behaviour of starling flocks. Our sincere congratulations, Giorgio!”

This is the second time in two years that Academy members were awarded the Nobel Prize in Physics: Roger Penrose and Reinhard Genzel in 2020, Syukuro Manabe, Klaus Hasselmann and Giorgio Parisi in 2021.

Transitioning to new energy systems: recorded webinar

On 11 October, an international audience of 150 people joined our panel of experts to discuss the impact that moving away from fossil fuels to new energy sources may have on our lives.

This online event was organised by SAPEA (Science Advice for Policy by European Academies) and Academia Europaea. You’ll find an overview of the webinar and key points from the speakers below..

Overview
Energy transition is not just about new technologies and innovation. Our current lifestyles are also contributing to energy and climate problems, and the move away from fossil fuels towards different energy systems will impact on everyone in society.

Our panel of experts

Our panel of experts

Change has to be fair and inclusive. It requires public engagement and active participation across the whole of society. Addressing these issues is even more important given the context of the upcoming global climate conference, COP26, and Europe’s goal to meet net zero emission of greenhouse gases by 2050.

This webinar, chaired and moderated by Professor Ole Petersen MAE, Vice-President of Academia Europaea, saw our panel of experts discuss these critical issues and answer questions from the audience.

Speakers
Professor Nebojsa Nakicenovic MAE, Deputy Chair of the European Commission’s Group of Chief Scientific Advisors, provided the context for the webinar with an overview of the Scientific Opinion on ‘A systemic approach to the energy transition in Europe’ and highlighted its important message of “leaving no one behind”.

Our next two speakers were SAPEA Energy Working Group Members – Professor Diana Urge-Vorsatz MAE, Director of the Center for Climate Change and Sustainable Energy Policy, Central European University; and Professor Benjamin Sovacool MAE, Professor of Energy Policy, University of Sussex. Using the SAPEA Evidence Review Report as a starting point, Professor Urge-Vorsatz discussed the inequalities in emissions across Europe and the value of avoided energy use. Professor Sovacool focused on the impact simple behaviour changes can have and the importance of balancing technological innovation and behaviour change for low-carbon transition.

Professor Nick Pidgeon, Professor of Environmental Psychology and Risk, Cardiff University, emphasised how involving the whole of society will be critical in the energy transition and that successful behaviour change approaches to reduce energy consumption will require elements such as good communications, infrastructure change and investment, and that regulation may also be needed.

Professor Eystein Jansen MAE, Professor of Earth Sciences / Paleoclimatology, University of Bergen and Member of the Scientific Council of the European Research Council, referred to the recent IPCC report and the sense of urgency to act on climate change. He described the challenges he saw ahead, expressing his concern that by setting goals for net zero emission of greenhouse gases by 2050, we may postpone necessary short-term actions, given that emissions need go down now.

Lise Øvreås is the new president of the DNVA

Professor Lise Øvreås has been elected new president of The Norwegian Academy of Science and Letters. She will be the third woman to hold this top position.

Lise Øvreås is the new president of the DNVA

Lise Øvreås is the new president of the DNVA. Photo: Eivind Senneset/UiB

Lise Øvreås is Professor of Geomicrobiology and Director of the Center for Sustainable Seas at the University of Bergen (UiB), and Professor II at UNIS. She has broad management experience and a strong national and international career.

– I greatly appreciate being elected president of the Academy, and I look forward to taking part in its further development, says Øvreås.

In her election speech, she mentioned sustainable change, scientific advice, and the promotion of free and independent research as some of her flagship issues for the Academy in the future.

Sustainability, the sea, and academia

Øvreås is educated at UiB and has, among other things, been vice dean for research at the Faculty of Mathematics and Natural Sciences. As director of Ocean Sustainability Bergen, scientific advice and the UN’s sustainability goals are two of her fields of experience.

She has been a member of the Academy of Sciences since 2013 and has previously been a board member and vice president. She represents Norway in the European Academy Science Advisory Council (EASAC) and is a member of the National Committee for the Year of Marine Research.

UiB Rector Margareth Hagen congratulates Lise Øvreås on an important position:

– The Academy of Sciences plays an important role in promoting science both in Norway and internationally, and Lise Øvreås, with her background in ocean and sustainability, is the right person to lead the academy further, says Hagen.

Third woman since 1857

Øvreås joins the leadership position in January 2022 and is elected for three years. She takes over from Hans-Petter Graver, UiO, who has been president since 2019. The president is also chairman of the board.

Øvreås is the third woman among 48 leaders in the Academy of Sciences since 1857. Her predecessors have been Professor Inger Moen (1998-2003) and Professor Kirsti Strøm Bull (2012-2015), both from the University of Oslo.

You can read this article, written by Åshild Nylund, in Norwegian here.

 

 

We must make sure that today’s solutions don’t become tomorrow’s problems

The publication of the first findings of the sixth IPCC climate report coincided with the start of the Norwegian climate conference Rosendalsveko (August 9th – 11th). For the young participants at the conference, the dire findings of the report and warnings of a “code red for the planet” came as no surprise.

Climate Research

Silje Skjelsvik, founder of “About Tomorrow”, Vår Dundas (PhD-student at Uib) Lise Tenold (student, NHH Norwegian School of Economics), Sigurd Melkenborg Salvesen (Student parliament at UiB).

The contrast from the beautiful natural surroundings by the Hardangerfjord in western Norway in full summer glory, to the warnings of the IPCC climate report, was keenly felt. The surrounding areas experience consequences such as the glacier melting now deemed unstoppable, of the nearby glacier Folgefonna.

New this year at the climate conference Rosendalsveko, are the additional sessions in the weekend leading up to the conference, in the form of a youth camp devoted to climate issues and interdisciplinary efforts for a greener future. Many participants here stayed for the main conference, creating extra awareness of the urgency of the issues. Central to this initial weekend of the conference, is the student organization “Om i morgen”, in English “About Tomorrow”.

Responsible utilization of the coastline

– We want to make sure that today’s solutions don’t become tomorrow’s problems. Sustainability issues are even more of a pressing area for the younger generations, says Silje Skjelsvik, founder of “About Tomorrow”.

As a climate scientist, she is not surprised that the findings of the sixth IPCC climate report paint an even bleaker picture of the health of the planet, with a connection between the increasing severity of natural disasters and temperature rise from human activity confirmed by the report.

Sigurd Melkenborg Salvesen was one of the participants at the youth camp who decided to stay for the whole conference.

– Rosendalsveko has proved to be a great meeting place for people to discuss sustainability issues. For me it was particularly interesting to follow the sessions on responsible utilization of the coastline in western Norway, as well as sessions looking at how interdisciplinarity can further sustainability efforts, Sigurd Melkenborg Salvesen says.

Like the rest of the group, he hopes that the youth camp leading up to the conference (to which the AE-Bergen Knowledge Hub is a contributor), will become a permanent fixture of the Rosendal Week.

Broad perspective on sustainability issues

For the young participants, it is important to have as broad a perspective as possible on sustainability issues.

Vakre Rosendal dannet rammen for andre årgang av klimakonferansen Rosendalsveko.

Vakre Rosendal dannet rammen for andre årgang av klimakonferansen Rosendalsveko.

– Some of the environmentally friendly solutions come at a cost. Today battery technology is one of the central alternatives to fossil fuels in the transport sector, but battery production can have a significant carbon footprint. If solar or wind energy is a viable alternative in the area of production, it should be utilised. Looking at all the alternatives with a broad perspective is necessary in finding tomorrows green solutions, Silje Skjelsvik says.

Situated in Rosendal by the Hardangerfjord in western Norway, the place itself serves as reminder of the value of nature and is thus an ideal place for a climate conference. Regional businesses help organize the event along with The Folgefonna outreach Centre, the Institute for Marine Research and the Bjerknes Centre for Climate Research. Several of the sessions touched on topics concerning interaction between business and academia to further sustainable solutions.

Vestlandet i et globalt perspektiv

I panelet Silje Skjelsvik, Pinar Heggernes, Ole R. Øvretveit og Tore Furevik. Debatten ble ledet av vitenskapelig leder i AE-Bergen, Eystein Jansen.

I panelet Silje Skjelsvik, Pinar Heggernes, Ole R. Øvretveit og Tore Furevik. Debatten ble ledet av vitenskapelig leder i AE-Bergen, Eystein Jansen.

Årets Rosendalsveko (9. – 11. august), med overskriften «Klima, energi, næring og bærekraft på Vestlandet» ble avsluttet med en paneldebatt over temaet «Vestlandet i et globalt perspektiv», et tema som også sammenfatter mange av diskusjonene fra konferansen som helhet.

Den avsluttende debatten ble ledet av vitenskapelig leder i AE-Bergen, Eystein Jansen. Se opptak av paneldebatten her. Den aktuelle debatten starter ved 01.02.30 inn i opptaket.

– Vestlandet har gode forutsetninger for å ta en ledende rolle i det grønne skiftet, gjennom verdensledende forskningsmiljøer innen klima- og havforskning, vi har naturlige forutsetninger innen det marine og det maritime, og vi har levende industriklynger. Alt dette må bygges videre på dersom Vestlandet skal holde på sin posisjon, sa Eystein Jansen som innledning til debatten.

Vakre Rosendal dannet rammen for andre årgang av klimakonferansen Rosendalsveko.

Vakre Rosendal dannet rammen for andre årgang av klimakonferansen Rosendalsveko.

Panelet bestod av Silje Skjelsvik, gründer og initiativtaker til studentorganisasjonen «Om i morgen», Pinar Heggernes, prorektor ved UiB, Ole R. Øvretveit, daglig leder i tankesmien Initiativ Vest, og Tore Furevik, direktør ved Nansensenteret for miljø og fjernmåling.

Noen av hovedpunktene fra panelet:

Silje Skjelsvik: Vi må sørge for at dagens løsninger ikke blir morgendagens problemer. Da må vi flytte subsidier fra fossil energi og over til fornybar energi. Verden vil ikke klare å begrense den globale oppvarmingen til under 2 grader, om ikke Vestland klarer det. La oss se det grønne skiftet med mulighetsbrillene på.

Pinar Heggernes: Nye teknologier kan være gode verktøy på veien mot en grønnere fremtid, i en region som alltid har vært internasjonalt orientert og der næringslivet viser evne til endring. Våre forskere driver med langsiktig forskning og ser på de lange linjene. Universitetet i Bergen har kontaktnett inn mot de beste forskningsmiljøene internasjonalt, og det kan også næringslivet dra nytte av.

Vestlandet i et globalt perspektiv»

Temaet «Vestlandet i et globalt perspektiv» sammenfattet mange av diskusjonene fra konferansen som helhet.

Ole R. Øvretveit: IPPC-rapporten, eller klimapanelets 6. hovedrapport, ble et utropstegn som viser at verden har dårlig tid. Oljeavhengigheten vår hemmer omstillingen. Verdens kapitalmarkeder blir stadig mer skeptiske til olje- og gass som investeringsobjekt. Oljeavhengigheten gir ikke bare et klimaproblem, men blir i økende grad også en økonomisk risiko. Omstillingen vil koste, også politisk. Vi har likevel gode kort på hånden, gjennom sterke teknologimiljøer og høy bærekrafts-kompetanse.

Tore Furevik: Et sentralt element for å få til det grønne skiftet er gode rammevilkår. Regionen vår har massevis av kompetanse, men denne benyttes i altfor stor grad til oljerelatert virksomhet. Fjorårets oljeskattepakke, og det at forskningsmidler fortsatt går til petroleumsforskning, bidrar til å binde opp de gode hodene i oljevirksomhet heller enn i omstilling. Jeg tror ikke på at begreper som flyskam, kjøttskam og dieselskam vil redde klimaet, slike begreper gir kun polarisering og støy. Samtidig må det bli dyrere å forurense, og det må bli enklere å leve miljøvennlig.

 

Ny «ungdoms-camp» innleder årets Rosendalsveko

Rosendalsveko går av stabelen for andre gang 9. – 11. august, med «Klima, energi, næring og bærekraft på Vestlandet» som hovedtema. I år er arrangementet utvidet med Rosendalshelga i forkant av uken.

Rosendalsveko arrangeres for andre gang i år, innledet av nykommeren Rosendalshelga, som kan beskrives som en "student-camp".

Rosendalsveko arrangeres for andre gang i år, innledet av nykommeren Rosendalshelga, som kan beskrives som en “student-camp”. Her fra arrangement i fjor. Foto: Kerim Hestnes Nisancioglu.

– Det vi så i fjor, var at noen av de mest spennende diskusjonene kom når studenter utfordret politikere, næringsliv og akademikere. Derfor legger vi i år opp til en helg for studentene i forkant av uken, i samarbeid med studentorganisasjonen Om i morgen.

Kerim Hestnes Nisancioglu leder Rosendalsveko. Til daglig er han klimaforsker ved UiB/Bjerknes.

Kerim Hestnes Nisancioglu leder Rosendalsveko. Til daglig er han klimaforsker ved UiB/Bjerknes.

Temaene de jobber med i helgen vil de øvrige deltakerne bli utfordret på under første dag av Rosendalsveko, forklarer programkomiteens Kerim Hestnes Nisancioglu (til daglig klimaforsker ved UiB/Bjerknes).

Studentorganisasjonen Om i morgen har selv lagt opp programmet for Rosendalshelga. Tema for workshop’en lørdag er «Hvordan kan vi best utnytte den lange kystlinjen vår?» (kan bli endret). Dette skal resultere i konkrete løsningsforslag.

Både Academia Europaea Bergen Knowledge Hub (AE-Bergen) og UiB er bidragsytere til Rosendalsveko. Bidraget fra AE-Bergen går spesifikt til Rosendalshelga og deltakelse for studentene fra Om i morgen.

Studentene vil utfordre

– Jeg er overbevist om at når studentene har jobbet med tema rundt det grønne skiftet i helgen, så vil de finne gode problemstillinger som utfordrer politikere, næringsliv og akademikere, legger Kerim Hestnes til.

– Et av temaene våre er «Lykkes Vestlandet – lykkes Norge». Jeg mener virkelig at ressursene og aktiviteten på Vestlandet tilsier at det faktisk er slik om Vestlandet lykkes, så lykkes Norge. Dersom vi finner de bærekraftige løsningene så vil vår tilgang på kraft og ressurser gjøre at vi kan lede an i det grønne skiftet.

Panelsamtalen «Vestlandet i et globalt perspektiv» blir moderert av vitenskapelig leder i AE-Bergen, Eystein Jansen. Debatten foregår på avsluttende dag av Rosendalsveko, onsdag 11. august.

Panelsamtalen «Vestlandet i et globalt perspektiv» blir moderert av vitenskapelig leder i AE-Bergen, Eystein Jansen.

– At Rosendalsveko retter seg mot både politikere, næringsliv og akademia gjør at det kan ligge et godt kunnskapsgrunnlag bak våre løsningsforslag, og det trenger vi studentene til å hjelpe oss med, sier Kerim Hestnes.

Panelsamtalen «Vestlandet i et globalt perspektiv» blir moderert av vitenskapelig leder i AE-Bergen, Eystein Jansen. Blant paneldeltakerne er Margareth Hagen, rektor ved UiB. Debatten foregår på avsluttende dag av Rosendalsveko, onsdag 11. august.

Studentorganisasjonen Om i morgen ble startet i 2019 ved mat-nat fakultetet ved UiB, med studenter på klima, atmosfære og havfysikk som initiativtakere. Etter hvert har medlemsmassen blitt mye mer tverrfaglig. Nå er det også studenter fra blant annet sammenliknende politikk, psykologi, juss og økonomi i tillegg til naturvitenskapelige fagfelt med i Om i morgen.

Tore Furevik i samtale Silje Skjelsvik fra Om i morgen under Rosendalsveko i fjor.

Tore Furevik i samtale Silje Skjelsvik fra Om i morgen under Rosendalsveko i fjor.

Liv Svenningsson Krogstad og Tilda Totland Persson i Om i morgen mener at tverrfagligheten har blitt en styrke for organisasjonen.

– Tverrfaglighet gir oss mulighet til å jobbe hverandre gode på områder man kanskje ikke er så godt kjent med i utgangspunktet. Det gjør at vi får inn ulike meninger og bakgrunner som vi kan ta med i videre arbeid. Den viktigste kilden til erfaring og læring er å delta i organisasjoner som jobber med det du engasjerer deg i, sier Tilda Totland Persson.

Medlemmene i Om i morgen har selv lagt opp programmet for Rosendalshelga.

Tilda Totland Persson Liv Svenningsson Krogstad i Om i morgen har vært med å lage programmet for Rosendalshelga.

Tilda Totland Persson Liv Svenningsson Krogstad i Om i morgen har vært med å lage programmet for Rosendalshelga.

– Vi har lagt vekt på at deltakerne skal lære noe og dra fra Rosendal med kunnskap og ideer, samt utfordre seg selv til å finne løsninger på klimautfordringer. Vi synes også det er viktig at deltakerne har det kjekt sosialt, og får tid til å bli kjent med hverandre og knytte nettverk. Programmet består blant annet av innlegg fra Renate Nedregård (ny leder i Klimapartnere Vestland) og Kerim Hestnes Nisancioglu, forklarer Liv og Tilda.

De tror at mange av ungdommene fra helge-campen vil få med seg flere av arrangementene også når selve Rosendalsveko begynner på mandagen.  

Urgent action needed to achieve carbon-neutrality by 2050

The SAPEA report “A systemic approach to the energy transition in Europe” suggests several possible pathways towards a carbon-neutral future. However, the SAPEA evidence review report concludes that achieving carbon-neutrality by 2050 will require urgent action.

The SAPEA report “A systemic approach to the energy transition in Europe” points to six main themes to be addressed.

The SAPEA report “A systemic approach to the energy transition in Europe” points to six main themes to be addressed.

Coinciding with the report, the corresponding Scientific Opinion of the European Commission’s Group of Chief Scientific Advisors has also been published.

The report points to six main themes to be addressed:

Technological diversity: Huge global investments in technology will be needed in the coming decades. But in general it is often difficult to predict the winning technologies of the future. So, rather than searching for a single silver bullet, Europe must develop and deploy a broad range of technologies while maintaining common, EU-wide goals. This is important not only to create a dynamic and flexible energy system, but also because different countries in Europe have different structures and needs.

Managing deep complexity: We must find new ways to balance supply and demand in a complex energy system that includes variable sources such as solar and wind power. Electrification, new infrastructure, energy efficiency, demand management, and innovative uses of data can all help to manage this complexity. For hard-to-decarbonise sectors, such as long distance transport and heavy industry, there are alternatives to direct electrification, such as green hydrogen fuels.

Governance and regulation: We need a strong carbon pricing mechanism as part of a mixture of regulatory measures and incentives. The existing European Emissions Trading System should be extended to all relevant sectors, including transport and heating/cooling, and political leaders should commit to very high carbon prices by the middle of the century, reflecting the full environmental impact of greenhouse gases. Revenues raised in this way should be used to support a fair transition, to ensure that no-one is left behind.

Behaviour and participation: Facilitating public behaviour and action at multiple levels is just as important as developing new technologies. In the energy system of the future, actions at individual, household, local and regional levels will play a central role in supporting energy generation and shifting patterns of use.

Global leadership: The EU is well placed to take a global lead in reducing emissions in a way that is economically efficient and socially equitable, while maintaining competitiveness. Europe must strengthen its diplomatic efforts to ensure that the Paris Agreement is followed by everyone, and to account for the emissions which are generated by goods imported into Europe. Reciprocal commitments from other countries will be more effective than overachieving in Europe alone.

Supply chain security: We must manage the global supply of materials needed to support clean energy technologies. Our dependency on imported fuels will decrease as we transition to green energy, but we must actively promote innovation, development and circular economy within Europe, or else we will end up with new dependencies on the imported materials that we need.

Within SAPEA, the lead academy delivering the Evidence Review Report was Euro-CASE. However, from Academia Europaea, Andreas Löschel of the University of Münster, Germany contributed in the working group.

View or download the report here.

Maria Leptin is the next President of the European Research Council

Maria Leptin was appointed President of the European Research Council (ERC) by the European Commission on June 30th.

Professor Maria Leptin is a highly respected scientist working on developmental biology and immunology. She leads research groups at the Institute of Genetics, University of Cologne, and at the European Molecular Biology Laboratory (EMBL), in Heidelberg. In 2010, she was appointed Director of EMBO, the European Commission states in a press release on the occasion of Leptins appointment.

The ERC Scientific Council also congratulate Maria Leptin in a press release:

We look forward to working together on the continued success of the ERC, Europe’s leading instrument for funding excellent frontier research.

The appointment of Maria Leptin is the outcome of a rigorous selection process, in which an independent Search Committee evaluated thoroughly all applications and nominations received, and prepared a short list of candidates for the position. The finalists were interviewed by the ERC Scientific Council, which informed Commissioner Mariya Gabriel of the ones it approved. The Commissioner then made the final decision, as the procedure stipulates.

We wholeheartedly support the outcome of the process, and welcome Maria Leptin as the next leader of our unique organisation. Her strong scientific and managerial backgrounds, her long-term involvement with European issues, her pioneering role in the scientific community and her familiarity with European institutions are all highly appreciated.

Her strong leadership will be essential in ensuring that frontier research continues to play a central role in the Horizon Europe framework programme, and that the ERC makes good use of its autonomy, as guaranteed by the legislative texts. Strict adherence to the bottom-up principle, leaving the full initiative to researchers, as well as using scientific quality and the pursuit of excellence as the sole criterion for the selection of proposals, will remain the cornerstones of the ERC’s mission.

Here is  the full ERC Scientific Council statement.

Summer greetings from Academic Director Eystein Jansen

Dear AE members, colleagues and friends,

Academic Director Eystein Jansen

Academic Director Eystein Jansen looks back on some major developments for the AE-Bergen Hub over the last 6 months.

Another semester has passed. While the prospects for the next semester are promising, we are not yet at the point where we can plan for normal activities. And what are normal activities? The pandemic will have a lasting impact on Academic life and the operations of academies such as ours. The next semester will likely see us moving into some more physical meetings and events.

This is good, but we will also bring with us new skills in organising meetings and webinars online. This can reduce our carbon footprint, and open our events to audiences we hitherto have not reached with our activities. This will provide opportunities for stronger interactions with members and stakeholders in the Nordic/Baltic region. There will be a phase of trying out how to balance physical and online activities, and we would much appreciate feedback and ideas on this matter as we move into the post-COVID time.

Despite the pandemic restrictions we have had an active semester, as you will see elsewhere in this newsletter and on our website. To name some: We took active part in the Arctic Frontiers conference, where we organized a well-attended online event in April together with Pacific Environment and the University of Bergen on: Arctic Marine Operations and Shipping – Green initiatives and challenges. On the initiative of the Norwegian Embassy in Tallin, we co-organised an online seminar with the Estonian Academy of Sciences: The changing Arctic, on Arctic Research in Norway and Estonia, primarily comprising young scholars. This will be followed up by collaborative workshops later this year.

Academic director at the AE-Bergen Hub, Eystein Jansen, gave an overview the Arctic/polar research landscape in Norway.

Academic director at the AE-Bergen Hub, Eystein Jansen, gave an overview the Arctic/polar research landscape in Norway at the webinar: The changing Arctic.

Late last year the EU Parliament and the EU Council and Commission finally came to an agreement on the 7-year financial framework for the Horizon Europe Programme. To the European Research community this was a relief, but it was also disappointing to see that the initial proposals for a strong budget for Pillar 1 which funds the ERC and the MSCA were cut significantly, thus regrettably lowering the ambitions for basic research. A strong mobilisation from many actors within the European science community, where AE and our Hub were very active, balanced this to some extent, and the end result was better than feared.

Yet this experience underscores the need for a strong and continued campaign for the necessity of Europe significantly raising its ambitions for Frontier Research. This is crucial if the aims for Europe to become the most innovative continent are to be realistic. The Pandemic clearly exemplifies how important investigator-driven Frontier Research is for our capacity to tackle the great challenges of our time, where the best minds can develop and follow their ideas. This will be an important task for the Hub when implementing our new Strategic Plan which you will find links to on our website and elsewhere in this newsletter.

Our Strategic Plan was recently approved by our Advisory Board and will guide our new initiatives and activities. Our Advisory Board is undergoing some changes: Professor Margareth Hagen, rector of the University of Bergen (UiB) has this spring taken over the Board Chair position from Professor Dag Rune Olsen (previous UiB-rector). Professor Marja Makarow leaves our Board as she takes over as president of Academia Europaea. She is replaced by Professor Carl Gahmberg, Chancellor of Åbo Akademi University. In addition, we are happy to include a new Danish member to our Board; Professor Kirsten Drotner of the University of Southern Denmark.

I am grateful for the opportunity to have the new members help in further developing our Hub, and also for the commitments from Dag Rune and Marja for their contributions and engagements for the Hub. I look forward to continuing close collaboration with Marja in her role as new AE President, and also with Dag Rune Olsen taking on as the new rector at the University of Tromsø.

Professor Marja Makarow leaves our Board as she takes over as president of Academia Europaea.

Professor Marja Makarow leaves our Board as she takes over as president of Academia Europaea.

The Horizon Europe Work Programme was finally launched this week. The programme includes funding for the next phase of the SAPEA project, part of the Commission’s Scientific Advise Mechanism to develop evidence reports in support of knowledge-based policy development in the European Union. The Bergen Hub will take formal part in the next face of SAPEA under the lead of the Cardiff Hub, a job we really look forward to! The Hub will further develop its role within the network of AE Hubs where increased interactions are planned between the Hubs. But more on this later! Hence, there will be more to do, and the new agreement between AE and the University of Bergen which was recently signed gives our Hub a secure foundation for the coming 4-yars period.

Meanwhile I wish all of you a splendid, safe and relaxed summer!

Eystein

 

Margareth Hagen is the new chair of AE-Bergen Knowledge Hub Advisory Board – 2 new members

Following her election as new Rector of the University of Bergen, Margareth Hagen is the new chair of the Hub´s Adisory Board. We also welcome 2 additional new members to our Advisory Board.

University of Bergen rector Margareth Hagen is the new chair of the Advisory Board of AE-Bergen Knowledge Hub.

University of Bergen rector Margareth Hagen is the new chair of the Advisory Board of AE-Bergen Knowledge Hub.

Only 2 days earlier, on May 25th, rector Margareth Hagen signed a renewed contract between Academia Europaea and UiB. The contract states that UiB will continue to host and facilitate the Academia Europaea Bergen Knowledge Hub for the next 4 years.

— I look very much forward to take on the role as chair of the Advisory Board of the AE-Bergen Hub. The Hub’s focus on sustainability issues, marine and arctic topics aligns very well with the strategic plan of the University of Bergen, rector Margareth Hagen said during the digital contract signing ceremony.

— In these strategically important areas, as well as other areas, I see potential for synergies both between different research disciplines, between our institution and other hubs, and with the Academia Europaea at large, she added.

Professor Marja Makarow leaves our Board as she takes over as president of Academia Europaea.

Professor Marja Makarow leaves our Board as she takes over as president of Academia Europaea.

As Margareth Hagen joins the Advisory Board of the AE-Bergen Hub as chair, she is also joined by two other new board members, namely Prof. Kirsten Drotner of the University of Southern Denmark and Prof. emer. Carl G. Gahmberg of the University of Helsinki, Finland. In addition to securing representation for all Nordic countries in the Advisory Board, the new members also provide expertise in the fields of media (Drotner), and molecular and integrative biosciences (Gahmberg).

Margareth Hagen replaces former rector of UiB, Dag Rune Olsen, as chair of the Advisory Board. Other outgoing members are Prof. Marja Makarow, director of Biocenter Finland. The AE-Bergen Knowledge Hub wishes to thank our outgoing Advisory Board members for their excellent contributions.