President's Message

I trust that all fellows and guests returned safely home after the conference. It was great to see good numbers of attendees and excellent opportunities to make and renew friendships. I have received very positive feedback from many of you regarding the success of the conference. I felt it had a real buzz to it and lots of goodwill abounded. We were indeed fortunate to have wonderful hosts who looked after us so well. What can I say?  --- the venue and its facilities was superb and the social functions exceeded all expectations. I have written to João Albino Silva, Dean Rebelo and Rector Guerreiro expressing the thanks of all Academy fellows for delivering such a memorable event.

As you know, we made every effort to engage with our hosts in interactive sessions so as to make the conference agenda relevant to our UAlg hosts. The panel sessions and the industry workshop were developed to this end. Like many of you, I feel that these sessions were very successful and produced a genuine and meaningful exchange of ideas. I think that all of these sessions produced a 'win-win' outcome for both hosts and guests.  I wish to thank those fellows who 'volunteered' (albeit with some arm twisting from Haiyan) to give feedback to industry panellists at the workshop. I was impressed with the effort that fellows put into this exercise and I know that all comments were greatly valued. (I promised to send all material to João to distribute to industry so please send me any relevant material and I will do this directly).

Already we are looking to 2015 and have signed an MOU with the University of the Aegean. Our contact is A/Prof. Andreas Papatheodorou who is planning the conference to be held on Rhodes. Given the obvious concerns about the future of the Greek economy and its impact on our meeting, the executive will monitor progress closely and will be in contact with Andreas on a regular basis. I will pass on information in each Newsletter.

A reminder that in the next few months there will be elections both for the new executive and also for the new fellows. The straw poll of conference participants' votes regarding the candidatures of new fellow nominees will be made available shortly by the secretariat. The secretariat will also provide information on the voting process for both elections. You are encouraged to vote early and often.

Best wishes,