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Malta EU Presidency MSCA 2017 Conference: Enhancing RI capacity through researchers’ mobility

Periodic Reporting for period 1 - MSCA 2017 (Malta EU Presidency MSCA 2017 Conference: Enhancing RI capacity through researchers’mobility)

Reporting period: 2016-12-01 to 2017-09-30

The MSCA 2017 Conference took place in Malta on the 11th and 12th May 2017 under the auspices of the Maltese Presidency of the EU. The event was organised by the Malta Council for Science and Technology within the Ministry for Education and Employment, with the kind cooperation of the European Commission.

The overall objective of the conference was to discuss and reflect on the Marie Skłodowska-Curie Actions with a special focus on ‘Mobility Takes Research Further’. The objectives of the event have been reached by sharing good practices and encouraging a debate on past and ongoing experiences. Experienced and early stage researchers, academics from various universities, European Commission officials, proposal evaluators, representatives of National Contact Points and Programme Committee Meetings of Horizon 2020, had the possibility to share their views and opinions. The event played a role of a platform for discussion and food for thought in relation to how mobility can affect research and the researchers’ careers with the special focus of the MSCA programme.

It can be concluded that the MSCA 2017 conference was a successful one, having in consideration that the overall proceeding went well and participants were very satisfied with the organization and the content of the conference. Positive feedback was received from speakers and participants.
"A number of services and goods have been procured right after the start of the project. The planning and the procurement of the right services is time consuming and the process continued until the realization of the conference. Drafting of the programme and identification of the right speakers was an important part of the process. Most of the speakers have been contacted at early stage, however due to some last minute changes and cancellations of few speakers, there was the need of replacements towards the last weeks before the conference. Furthermore, it was not an easy task to find a relevant key note speaker as although most of them have been contacted at least 5 months in advance, they informed the organizers that are not available on the event dates.

The preparation of the MSCA 2017 Prize Awards and the launch has been challenging task, especially when having in consideration the high amount of applications received. External experts have been hired in order to score the submissions and select the top applications. However, the efforts and hard work were satisfying when seen the results and the good choice of the selected fellows.

The website has been launched in January 2017 and has been continuously updated. It has registered high amount of visits, including visits from unique visitors. Total of 19,724 page views from 6,108 users have been recorded for the period from 1st January to 30th September 2017 on the website.

Having in mind that the event has been listed as an official presidency event, the organizers had to cooperate with the established Presidency Unit in order to make sure that the logo and the right templates and wording is used in relation to the event. Furthermore, all participants had to register in the accreditation system for security reasons.
Promotion of the event took place through various channels and with the kind cooperation of various stakeholders.

All deliverables and tasks of the project have been finalized and uploaded.

The biggest achievement of the project is the successful realization of the conference MSCA 2017 'Mobility takes research further""."
The conference has inspired the participants as a number of MSCA fellows took part in the event and spoke to the audience about their projects and experience gained thanks to the MSCA. Furthermore, the event served as a networking platform that can result in future co-operations and collaborations between inter sectoral and inter disciplinary approaches.