For the first Board Meeting of 2016, the member of the ALLEA Board convened, on the kind invitation of the Romanian Academy, in Bucharest on 29 February and 1 March. With the ALLEA General Assembly approaching fast, the Board received updates on the current status of preparations. Additionally, the Board was informed about the latest developments with the European Commission’s Scientific Advice Mechanism (SAM) and ALLEA’s role therein.
The participants were warmly welcomed to the Academy by the Academy’s President Professor Ionel Valentin Vlad. Throughout his career as a physicist, Professor Vlad has always sought to engage in international scientific cooperation and was, thus, highly appreciative of ALLEA’s visit to his Academy. To start off the meeting, ALLEA President Günter Stock informed the participants about recent ALLEA activities and the Board members received an update on the status of membership dues for the year 2015 as well as an outlook for the year 2016. Furthermore, the participantsdiscussed the progress made in the preparation of a European Commission Horizon 2020 call, in cooperation with a consortium of academy networks, to participate in SAM.
On the second day of the meeting the group received an update on the preparation of the ALLEA General Assembly in Vienna in April 2016, with information about the speakers of the symposium and the preparation for the Mme de Staël Prize Award Ceremony, as well as an outlook to the General Assembly 2017 in Budapest.
To conclude the meeting, the Board members discussed upcoming events in 2016, followed by a visit to the library of the Romanian Academy.
The Romanian Academy (Academia Românã) was founded in April 1866 as the Romanian Literary Society. The following year it began its activities, but was now called the Romanian Academic Society. In 2016, the Academy will celebrate its 150th anniversary on 4 April. On behalf of ALLEA and its member academies, ALLEA President Günter Stock will address the audience during the festivities. In 1879, by means of special legislation, it was promulgated as a national institution with the current name of Academia Românã – the Romanian Academy. Form the very beginning the newly founded institution was a national, encyclopedic and active society. It was:
- National, because it was representative of the culture of not only the territory of what was then Romania, but also those territories under foreign domination by the Austro-Hungarian, Ottoman, and Russian Empires. Hence, the 21 founding members were scholars and literati, not only from Wallachia and Moldavia, but also from Transylvania, Banat, Bukovine, Bessarabia (today the Republic of Moldova) and the Balkan Peninsula.
- Encyclopedic, since its preoccupations embraced all domains of the arts, letters, and sciences.
- An active society, because the Romanian Academy was conceived by its founders as a forum of national recognition, but at the same time as an active centre of scientific research and literary and artistic creation.
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