MELODI, European Radioecology Alliance, NERIS and EURADOS sign a Memorandum of Understanding
On 5 December 2013, MELODI (Multidisciplinary European Low Dose Initiative), the European Radioecology Alliance (ALLIANCE), NERIS and EURADOS signed a Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) confirming their joint commitment towards the consolidation and implementation of a strategic vision of radiation protection research in Europe. This ceremony took place at the European Commission’s headquarters in Brussels, in the presence of Bruno Schmitz, Head of Unit K4 “Fission” at the Directorate General for Research and Innovation.
In reecent years, forming networks and stable associations between European research partners in order to promote joint research needs, establish strategic priorities, and develop cooperation in the implementation of research - in particular through a better integration of national R&D programmes within such a holistic European approach - slowly developed.
The overall aim is to address important scientific questions that will shape the further enhancement of radiation protection practices in Europe and beyond, such as, for example, better understanding individual radio-sensitivity, or the nature of dose/effects relationships for low-dose exposures, which above all requires the enhancement of radiobiology and radio-toxicology knowledge. This knowledge then needs to be transferred and developed into guidelines and operational tools designed to manage issues such as those related to the presence of radioactive contaminants in the environment, the management of radiological emergencies and the remediation of contaminated sites.
For this reason, MELODI, ALLIANCE, NERIS and EURADOS were established. Each focuses on a specific research area: MELODI concentrates on low-dose ionising radiation, ALLIANCE on radioecology, NERIS on emergency preparedness and response, as well as governance of post-accidental situations and EURADOS specialises in dosimetry. The intention to establish a joint research agenda was then taken to the next level, in the first instance by initiatives launched by the European Commission, but also by leading European research institutes. This resulting in the signature of this MoU.
The cooperation between MELODI, ALLIANCE, NERIS and EURADOS was initiated under the EU’s Seventh Framework Programme for Research (FP7) and particularly within the contaxt of a project called “OPERRA” (Open Project for the European Radiation Research Area). OPERRA aims to establish the necessary structures for managing long-term European research programmes in radiation protection.
The organisations that signed the MoU decided to establish a Joint Radiation Protection Research Roadmap Committee, whose the aim is to coordinate - when necessary - their respective strategic research agendas and priority roadmaps. Further joint working groups will be set to work in areas of common concern for the overall benefit of European radiation protection research. MELODI will be responsible for managing and coordinating things.
The MOU is open to European organisations with an interest in radiation protection research that might like to sign up to it.
MELODI contact: firstname.lastname@example.org
The Memorandum of Understanding between Radioecology ALLIANCE, NERIS, MELODI and EURADOS was signed by (from left to right) Frank Hardeman (ALLIANCE President), Thierry Schneider (NERIS president), Jacques Repussard (MELODI President) and Filip Vanhavere on behalf of Helmut Schuhmacher (EURADOS President) and in the presence of Bruno Schmitz (Head of Unit K4 “Fission” at the Directorate General for Research and Innovation).