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The JRC/AAAS scientific symposium: a highlight of ESOF 2008 The JRC/AAAS scientific symposium: a highlight of ESOF 2008
Jul 22 2008

Over 300 researchers, policy makers, business representatives and journalists filled the main auditorium of the Fira de Barcelona conference centre on Sunday to witness Director General of the Joint Research Centre Dr Roland Schenkel, along with CEO of the American Association for the Advancement of Science (AAAS) Dr Alan Leshner, give a joint presentation entitled “Mars and Venus: How Europeans and Americans view and use Science”. The symposium, moderated by Professor Patrick Cunningham, Chief Scientific Advisor to the Government of Ireland, was a highlight of the scientific programme of the Euroscience Open Forum (ESOF) 2008, taking place in Barcelona July 18-22, 2008.

Jul 20 2008

Starting Friday, July 18 in Barcelona, the Euroscience Open Forum (ESOF) 2008 features a strong presence by the JRC, with five scientific sessions by JRC scientists as well as a number of high profile science-related communication activities.

Population density as measured by the JRC's EU population density grid Population density as measured by the JRC's EU population density grid
Jul 16 2008

The downscaled population density grid produced by the JRC's Institute for the Protection and Security of the Citizen and hosted by the European Environment Agency (EEA) is attracting more and more interest. The number of grids downloaded from the EEA data service since its launch online in 2004 has grown from 207 for that year to 1408 in 2007 and 902 in just the first 5 months of 2008.

The JRC's population density grid combines information on population per commune using the CORINE Land Cover (COoRdinate INformation on the Environment) and LUCAS (Land Use and Cover Area frame Statistical survey) systems. Initially produced in 1999 at the request of Eurostat and EEA for the analysis of rural area typologies, the 5th version of the grid is now extensively used for a number of purposes. The population density grid is used, for example, to compute accessibility indicators including the average distance of dwellings to services, to monitor the implementation of the EC Directive on noise restrictions at airports and to assess the impact of floods.

Improving the production of these grids is the main project of the European Forum for Geostatistics, an initiative of National Statistical Institutes supported by Eurostat and closely related to INSPIRE. The next workshop, to be held in Bled, Slovenia, on 1-3 October 2008 , will address the theme of "integration of statistics and geography for sustainable development".

Presentation of progress made towards Member States' 2010 education goals against 5 key benchmarks. Presentation of progress made towards Member States' 2010 education goals against 5 key benchmarks.
Jul 11 2008

The European Commission has presented the latest data on Member States' progress towards the 2010 goals they have set themselves for their education systems under the Lisbon strategy. This annual "indicators and benchmarks" report looks at individual countries' performances in key areas such as completion of secondary education, early school leavers, low achievers in reading literacy, graduates in maths, science and technology and the participation of adults in lifelong learning activities.

The key finding of the 2008 report is that overall Europe is making progress in all areas with the exception of low achievers in reading. However, though education and training has been improving steadily in EU Member States since 2000, progress will need to be faster in almost all areas in order to meet targets by 2010.

The report was prepared by the Directorate-General for Education and Culture in close cooperation with Eurostat, the Eurydice European Unit and the JRC's Centre for Research on Lifelong Learning based on indicators and benchmarks (CRELL). With its expertise in econometrics and statistics in the education field, CRELL has extensively contributed to the whole report. In particular, in the chapter dedicated to lifelong learning, CRELL developed and analysed a composite measure of participation in lifelong learning for European countries based on Eurostat data.

CRELL was established in 2005 within the JRC's Institute for the Protection and Security of the Citizen in order to gather expertise in the field of indicator-based evaluation and monitoring of education and training systems. CRELL combines fields of economics, econometrics, education, social sciences and statistics in an interdisciplinary approach to research.

The 'Knowledge for Growth' website. The 'Knowledge for Growth' website.
Jul 09 2008

The first event to be organised by the French Ministry of Higher Education and Research within the French Presidency of the European Union is taking place in Toulouse, from the 7th to the 9th of July. The conference, jointly run by the Toulouse School of Economics (TSE), was opened today by Commissioner for Science and Research Janez Potocnik and the French Ministry's Director General for Research and Innovation.

The JRC's Institute for Prospective Technological Studies is to present papers at the conference on a number of topics. These are:

Total annual income from congestion charges as calculated by JRC-IPTS Total annual income from congestion charges as calculated by JRC-IPTS
Jul 08 2008

The European Commission today put forward a package of new "Greening Transport" initiatives to steer transport towards sustainability. First, a strategy to ensure that the prices of transport better reflect their real cost to society, so that environmental damage and congestion can gradually be reduced in a way that boosts the efficiency of transport and ultimately the economy as a whole. Second, a proposal to enable Member States to help make this happen through more efficient and greener road tolls for lorries, with the revenue to be used to reduce environmental impacts from transport and cut congestion. Third, a communication to reduce noise from rail freight. The package also includes an inventory of existing EU measures on greening transport and a communication on the additional greening transport initiatives that this Commission will take before the end of 2009.

Jochen Delbeke receives his award for an outstanding thesis Jochen Delbeke receives his award for an outstanding thesis
Jul 07 2008

On July 5th 2008, the Ghent University Alumni Engineers Association awarded Jochen Delbeke with the Jozef Plateau Prize for the best MSc (Master of Science) thesis. Mr Delbeke carried out the winning study during a traineeship at the Nuclear Safeguards Unit of the Joint Research Centre in Ispra in 2005, under the supervision of Professor Greet Janssens-Maenhout. The research focused on the technical requirements of a proliferation resistant nuclear industry and a first set of its results, dealing with requirements in safeguards for nuclear reactors, have been published in Nuclear Engineering & Design (2007). His work for the European Master of Science in Nuclear Engineering has also been recognised by the European Nuclear Engineering Network.

IRMM-CEA collaboration agreement Signature of IRMM-CEA collaboration agreement on 20/06/2008
Jun 20 2008

A new collaboration agreement between the European Atomic Energy Community, represented by the JRC Institute for Reference Materials and Measurements (IRMM), and the Centre à Énergie Atomique (CEA, FR) will significantly advance cooperative research in domains of common interest: high level nuclear waste minimization and management, safety of advanced reactor concepts and fuel cycles and issues in basic nuclear science.

satellite imagery Automatic Damage assessment using textural analysis: built up structures in red (Wen Chuan Earthquake 2008)
Jun 19 2008

At the request of the European Commission Delegation in China and in agreement with the Ministry of Science and Technology, the JRC Institute for the Protection and Security of the Citizen (IPSC) provided a scientific and technical support package to the Chinese Academy of Sciences, Centre of Earth Observation and Digital Earth (CAS/CEODE), in order to contribute to post Wen Chuan earthquake disaster measures, such as damage assessment for reconstruction planning and future disaster risk reduction initiatives.

UNFCCC logo United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change
Jun 12 2008

Intense negotiations are ongoing in Bonn, Germany, during the 28th Sessions of Subsidiary bodies of the United Nation Framework Convention on Climate Change (UNFCCC). The aim is to move forward in the road towards a global agreement on a post-Kyoto climate change framework to be reached by December 2009. During the Bonn meeting scientists from the JRC Institute for Environment and Sustainability (IES) have contributed to two of the hottest topics on ground: the future treatment of the “Land Use, Land Use Change and Forestry (LULUCF)” sector and the “Reducing Emissions from Deforestation and Forest Degradation on developing countries (REDD)” issue.