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T: +44 (0) 2920 874004 F: +44 (0) 2920 874004 web: RESEARCH FRAMEWORK PROGRAMME PROJECT EXPERIENCE HYWEL THOMAS DIRECTOR,

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Presentation on theme: "T: +44 (0) 2920 874004 F: +44 (0) 2920 874004 web: RESEARCH FRAMEWORK PROGRAMME PROJECT EXPERIENCE HYWEL THOMAS DIRECTOR,"— Presentation transcript:

1 T: +44 (0) F: +44 (0) web: RESEARCH FRAMEWORK PROGRAMME PROJECT EXPERIENCE HYWEL THOMAS DIRECTOR, GEOENVIRONMENTAL RESEARCH CENTRE, CARDIFF UNIVERSITY

2 Geoenvironmental Research Centre Canolfan Ymchwil Ddaearymgalcheddol 2 ABOUT ME ENGINEER (EU FP likes engineering) CIVIL ENGINEER (EU FP prefers other forms of engineering eg ICT) WORKED IN THE UNIVERSITY FOR 30 YEARS. (PERIOD 1980 TO 2010) MY PERSONAL EXPERIENCE. (Rules are somewhat different now e.g. Early Career Researchers)

3 Geoenvironmental Research Centre Canolfan Ymchwil Ddaearymgalcheddol 3 ATTITUDE/APPROACH I WAS ALWAYS INTERESTED IN WORKING WITH EUROPEAN PARTNERS. i.e. Drive came from me personally. SAW IT AS INTERNATIONAL RECOGNITION. AND EU IS ENGINEERING FRIENDLY. FRENCH GERMAN ITALIAN SO IT WAS ALWAYS PART OF MY PERSONAL STRATEGIC PLANNING.

4 Geoenvironmental Research Centre Canolfan Ymchwil Ddaearymgalcheddol 4 APPROACH FOR THE FIRST TEN YEARS OF MY CAREER I DID NOT APPLY TO THE FP PROGRAMMES. I HAD TO BUILD MY CAREER FIRST. FUNDED FOR THE FIRST TEN YEARS BY EPSRC. CARRIED OUT BASIC RESEARCH. PUBLISHED THE WORK AND BUILT UP EUROPEAN CONTACTS VIA CONFERENCES. i.e. YOU HAVE TO HAVE THE TRACK RECORD.

5 Geoenvironmental Research Centre Canolfan Ymchwil Ddaearymgalcheddol 5 MY AREA VERY SPECIALISED. ENGINEERING BEHAVIOUR OF THE SOIL IN THE GROUND. I STUDIED TEMPERATURE EFFECTS. NO ONE ELSE IN THE WORLD STUDIED THIS SUBJECT. HAD A LONG TERM PLAN. TARGET AREA WAS HIGH LEVEL NUCLEAR WASTE DISPOSAL. [MAJOR INTERNATIONAL RESEARCH PROGRAMMES]

6 Geoenvironmental Research Centre Canolfan Ymchwil Ddaearymgalcheddol 6 The Äspö Hard Rock Laboratory The Äspö Hard Rock facility comprises a tunnel. Approximately 3,600 m long. Descends to a depth of approx. 460 m. Research areas are located around the facility.

7 Geoenvironmental Research Centre Canolfan Ymchwil Ddaearymgalcheddol 7 MY FIRST GRANT ASSEMBLED A TEAM (Spanish, Belgian, French partners). TRAVELLED TO SPAIN, BELGIUM TO WORK WITH THEM (British Council Funding). WROTE THE PROPOSAL. I PLANNED TO LEAD. THE BELGIAN GROUP THEN DID A TAKE-OVER. WE PASSED THE QUALITY THRESHOLD. TIP: IN MY EXPERIENCE, BELGIAN ORGANISATIONS ARE VERY WELL CONNECTED TO THE COMMISSION.

8 Geoenvironmental Research Centre Canolfan Ymchwil Ddaearymgalcheddol 8 EUROPEAN NEGOTIATIONS IF YOU PASS THE QUALITY THRESHOLD YOU ENTER THE NEGOTIATIONS. PROJECTS CAN CHANGE COMPLETELY AT THIS STAGE. MY WORK WAS IN THE EURATOM PROGRAMME. THE BIG INDUSTRIAL PLAYERS PART FUND EVERYTHING. SO THEY THEN DECIDED (WITH THE EC) WHAT WE ACTUALLY DID.

9 Geoenvironmental Research Centre Canolfan Ymchwil Ddaearymgalcheddol 9 MAIN IMPACT RESEARCH WORK WAS FUNDED. JOINED THE EUROPEAN UNION FAMILY/CLUB. HAVE BEEN FUNDED CONTINUOUSLY SINCE. (20 YEARS). VIA EU RECOGNITION JOINED THE INTERNATIONAL STAGE. US/CANADA/IAEA PLATFORMS.

10 Geoenvironmental Research Centre Canolfan Ymchwil Ddaearymgalcheddol 10 COMMENTS BREAKING IN IS HARDEST. ONCE YOU ARE INSIDE IT IS SOMEWHAT EASIER. BUT YOU OBVIOUSLY HAVE TO DELIVER ON RESEARCH QUALITY.

11 Geoenvironmental Research Centre Canolfan Ymchwil Ddaearymgalcheddol 11 TRICKS OF THE TRADE WHEN YOU ARE ON THE INSIDE YOU CAN GET TO KNOW COMMISSION THINKING. IN RESEARCH MEETINGS COMMISSION OFFICERS MAKE PRESENTATIONS. ALWAYS MAKE SURE YOU ARE PRESENT. THE PRESENTATIONS OFTEN SEEM TO BE AT THE MOST INCONVENIENT TIMES – YOU MIGHT BE TEMPTED TO SKIP THOSE SESSIONS. THEY OFTEN GIVE YOU A VIEW OF COMMISSION FORWARD PLANNING.

12 Geoenvironmental Research Centre Canolfan Ymchwil Ddaearymgalcheddol 12 WITH TIME WITH TIME YOU MAY BE ASKED TO HELP DESIGN FUTURE PROGRAMMES. OR AT LEAST MAKE INPUTS INTO THE SCIENTIFIC DIRECTIONS.

13 Geoenvironmental Research Centre Canolfan Ymchwil Ddaearymgalcheddol 13 OTHER THINGS I DID LOOKED FOR NICHES. I WAS WELL POSITIONED WHEN THE IRON CURTAIN CAME DOWN. WORKED WITH THE CZECH REPUBLIC, POLAND AND HUNGARY. STARTED TO EXTEND BEYOND NUCLEAR WASTE. CO-ORDINATED ALL THOSE PROJECTS.

14 Geoenvironmental Research Centre Canolfan Ymchwil Ddaearymgalcheddol 14 SIDE EFFECTS I BECAME KNOWN AS AN EC PROJECT PERSON. OTHER PEOPLE WANT YOU TO JOIN THEIR TEAMS – BECAUSE YOU HAVE A GOOD EU CV. SNOWBALL EFFECT. E.G. BROUGHT INTO PROJECTS BY TEAM WALES (The WDA in those days). REGENEREATION WORK (RESCUE). MAJOR SOCIAL SCIENCE COMPONENT.

15 Geoenvironmental Research Centre Canolfan Ymchwil Ddaearymgalcheddol 15 OBSERVATIONS EU HAS ALLOCATED VAST SUMS OF MONEY TO ITS RESEARCH PROGRAMMES. WE ARE WELCOME AT THIS PARTY. ALL WE HAVE TO DO IS APPLY. THIS OBVIOUSLY TAKES SOME WORK. MANY, MANY PEOPLE SEE A BRICK WALL. MANY, MANY PEOPLE COMPLAIN ABOUT THE ADMIN.

16 Geoenvironmental Research Centre Canolfan Ymchwil Ddaearymgalcheddol 16 THE PROBLEMS THE ADMIN. To LEAD or NOT TO LEAD. IF YOU ARE AN EARLY STAGE ACADEMIC DO NOT CO-ORDINATE JUST BE A PARTNER. IF YOU ARE A MORE SENIOR PROFESSOR, WITH AN ESTABLISHED RESEARCH CENTRE, LEADERSHIP IS OK. YOU PROBABLY HAVE A TEAM WHO CAN DO IT. EVEN THEN ……………..BE CAREFUL.

17 Geoenvironmental Research Centre Canolfan Ymchwil Ddaearymgalcheddol 17 ADMIN SUPPORT UNIVERSITY EC TEAMS. (Nick Bodycombe and Team) EXTERNAL CONSULTANTS MIXED EXPERIENCE.


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