What we discussed at our board meetings

At our General Assembly we gave an undertaking that a resume of all board meetings would be posted on the EUSJA web site. We have held two. The first In Dublin during ESOF and the second during a study trip to the European health Forum in Gastein, Austria held in September. As far as we can, we aim to link our meetings to invited event to minimise costs. We do of course communicate often with each other electronically.

A reminder. The board consists of myself Barbie Drillsma, president; Viola Egikova, vice-president; Elmar Veerman, treasurer and Wolfgang Goede, secretary. Fabio and Turone and Menelaos Sotiriou were invited on to the board as associate members. They have both made great contributions to our discussion and actions. Fabio has re-vamped and updated the web site and EUSJA News and Menelaos has carried out sterling work deciphering and submitting numerous EU directives and calls for partnerships connected to Framework 7.


  • Barbie negotiated with Peter Tindemans General Secretary of EuroScience to pay a reduced subscription of 500 euro instead of 1500 in return for articles for the organisation’s magazine, to be prepared by Menelaos and others if necessary, on science policy.
  • Anna Nolan will take over as editor of EUSJA News with Fabio doing design and layout. Both these positions will be paid.
  • Two thousand euro are in the bank account and invoices for this year’s fees will be sent out. Elmar considering standing down as treasurer, for personal reasons, at the next GA.
  • Discussion held on the stand at ESOF. Barbie suggested using the stand for something along the lines of speed dating sessions – part of a proposed training programme. More detailed “manning” of the stand by members needed at conferences.
  • Confusion over two or more EUSJA web sites. Fabio will sort out.
  • EUSJA’s Gant for Investigative Science Journalism Award. Jop de Vries and Olivier Desebourg have submitted an excellent proposal. Once finalised details will be sent to all delegates and the paper will be discussed at the next GA.
  • EUSJA’s participation in EU projects. A whole raft of invitations has been received. Menelaos will collate, evaluate, report back to the board with participation proposals and submit.
  • Wolfgang Goede spoke of two proposed sessions at the WFSJ conference in Helsinki. He has prepared outlines on “Blood Infusion for Staggering Science Journalism” and “Horizon 2020 – how science journalists tie into the new EU strategy.”
  • WFSJ: A special assembly attended by most of the board passed a new constitution after earlier fears had been comprehensively debated. Barbie will ask for WFSJ support for any future EUSJA training like those undertaken in the Sjcoop programme.
  • Study Trips: Viola is responsible for gathering proposals for study trips from delegates and board member as well as sourcing new ventures. She has a wide list of possible visits stretching across the next two years.
  • Election. The confusion created at the last GA when last minute nominations were received was discussed. Further discussion needed to determine if the constitution needs looking at and the exact role of the nomination committee and scope of proxy votes to be revised if necessary. No changes can be made without backing of all delegates.
  • Publicity material – this needs revising and Wolfgang and Fabio will work on a new leaflet.


  • Barbie delighted with efforts to raise EUSJA’s profile by all board members.
  • Progress: Fabio unifying all different websites. New leaflet will be presented at the next GA (March 16th, 2013, Prague). EUSJA booklet- remaining copies will be bought from Vesa Ninnikangas and stored in Strasbourg office.
  • Finances sound and solid. Elmar confirmed he is standing down. The nomination committee will be approached to send out a call to all delegates for nominations for new treasurer.
  • Elmar suggested an overall communication strategy. Barbie would like to see a basic guide to Eusja with info on blog posting, study trips etc. Viola will ensure one participant from study trips writes a report for the web site and newsletter. All participants will be encouraged to blog.
  • Autumn newsletter out by October 20th and Christmas edition, December 17th.
  • AJSPI, the French association has decided to leave EUSJA. Barbie has been in contact with representatives and although supportive of EUSJA to some extent the overall feeling is that they want to leave. The French will, however, co-operate on some shared aspects of science journalism like a statement recently prepared by Fabio on embargoes. Lines of communication will be kept open.
  • Elsevier. Barbie has negotiated 50 free access facilities to journals for EUSJA members. The board will decide how to allocate these place – lottery perhaps?
  • WFSJ. A meeting with Jean-Marc Fleury, Pallab Ghosh and Barbie held in London. Jean-Marc reported that the newly-elected director, Danielle Vinette has resigned. WFSJ cannot offer any funds for EUSJA training but will fully support any efforts to offer European training by offering advice and its Sjcoop material.
  • General Assembly: Long discussion on voting. Decided only general proxies will be accepted. Does constitution need to be changed if the positions covered by the two associate board members were made permanent board positions? Should elections be staggered to allow for continuity? Should all terms stop a the same time so there is a complete turnover?