EMIRI’s latest General Assembly of 2023 took place in Spain on November 22, 2023. Our CIDETEC colleagues kindly hosted the meeting, and as this is becoming a tradition already, we also organised other activities the day before.

On November 21st, we started the programme at Naturklima (the Gipuzkoa Provincial Council’s Climate Change Foundation) in San Sebastian where EMIRI and AMI2030 jointly organised a workshop on sustainable materials. During this workshop attended by ~60 participants, Spanish regional actors from the Basque Country such as Tekniker, Tecnalia, Azterlan, CIDETEC, CIC energiGUNE and Naturklima were invited to showcase their activities and projects in this field. In addition, we had the pleasure to count with the participation of representatives from the European Commission, the Spanish Government, and the IRISS network. This was all linked with the work conducted by the AMI2030 initiative, anticipating the IM4EU partnership. The session concluded with a panel session moderated by Karim Sidi-Ali-Cherif with the aim of exploring how to move from linear to circular value chains. For more information, you can visit the event’s website.

After the networking lunch, we moved to CIDETEC to visit the nanomedicine, energy, and surfaces laboratories. Afterwards, we headed to TECNALIA for another interesting lab tour covering Surface Engineering, Membrane Technology and Process Intensification, Waste recovery pilot plant, Functional Printing, Automated composite manufacturing pilot plant and Hydrogen Technologies.

With all this knowledge, we were ready to return to the city centre! Our guide, Ángel, awaited us to show us San Sebastian in a very enriching 2-hour city tour. Despite a little bit of rain, we enjoyed a lot having the opportunity to dig into the Basque culture and history from the hand of a local person. Ángel dropped us off at the historic Hotel de Londres y de Inglaterra, where we were meeting the rest of the group for dinner. 

The next day, on November 22nd, we met again at the auditorium of CIDETEC for the last General Assembly of this year 2023. More than 20 members joined us physically, while around 15 connected online. After the welcoming words of our chairman, Eric Peeters (DOW), and the verification of the quorum, the Managing Director, Philippe Jacques, gave the floor to our invited speaker from the European Commission – DG RTD, Jurgen Tiedje (slides available here).

Next, we reviewed the financial status and we introduced the 2 new members that have recently applied to join EMIRI: Planck Technologies and OneJoon. We are excited to have them on board!

After a short break, we continued with the main achievements of 2023. The Managing Director highlighted the work conducted during the past months relating to the Advanced Materials 2030 Initiative (AMI2030) and the IM4EU partnership proposal and the different EU-funded projects in which EMIRI is involved (BIG-MAP, Battery 2030+, IRISS and the upcoming PINK project).

To finish the meeting, the members engaged in a very interesting discussion on the future of EMIRI for the next year. This is a very complex topic, and it is full of open questions so, this discussion for sure will be continued…

After another great networking lunch, including jamón, salmorejo and other traditional Spanish food, we drove to Eibar for the last lab tour of the trip. When we arrived, we were impressed by the beauty of TEKNIKER’s surroundings and their activities dealing with Advanced Manufacturing, Surface Engineering, Tribology and Advanced Material characterisation.

We look forward to seeing you all again at our next General Assembly & side events on March 18-19 in Belgium! Stay tuned!