For the first three days of March 2016, over 50 participants will converge in Brussels to review and learn from the first year of the COLUMBUS project, the European Commission’s flagship Blue Growth initiative and representative of their most substantial investment in Knowledge Transfer to date. This event is the first of three annual international conferences hosted by COLUMBUS that will gather project partners, knowledge generators and end users, as well as Knowledge Transfer specialists, to discuss on-going COLUMBUS Knowledge Transfer. This event represents the first time that COLUMBUS Knowledge Transfer Fellows and partners meet the newly-formed External Advisory Board. Boasting 14 members, the External Advisory Board comprises members with abundant experience in the challenges affecting the EU’s Blue Growth agenda, representing a vast range of highly-relevant backgrounds and organisations: AZTI Tecnalia, Bord Iascaigh Mhara (BIM), Dublin City University, the European Fisheries Control Agency, the European Marine Board, European Parliament, the German Marine Research Consortium (KDM), JPI-Oceans, Marcom, Nord University, the OSPAR Commission, Pôle Mer Bretagne Atlantique, Researchfish, Southampton Marine and Maritime Institute and the United Nations Environment Programme (UNEP).
“As ambassadors to the project, the members of the External Advisory Board will promote COLUMBUS’ goals to relevant policy, industry, scientific and societal actors to ensure visibility and consequence”, explains Cliona Ní Cheallacháin, COLUMBUS Project Manager, “This will guarantee that COLUMBUS meets its overarching objective, to ensure that applicable knowledge generated through EC-funded science and technology research is transferred effectively to advance the governance and economic growth of the European marine and maritime sectors.”