2024 conference agenda

MCAA annual conference 2024 lets meet in Milan

Agenda for the Annual Conference (AC) and General Assembly (GA).

Click to download the full agenda with rooms in PDF here.

Day 0 - Thursday 14-03-2024

10:00 - 12:00

13:00 - 17:00

13:00 - 17:00

13:00 - 16:00

Day 1 - Friday 15-03-2024

8:00 - 9:00

Registration and Welcome

9:00 - 9:45

Opening Ceremony (Room 1 MAGNA)

09:45 - 10:45

Plenary 1

FP10 & Beyond: Shaping the future of European R&I

10:45 - 11:15

Coffee-Break & Networking

11:15 - 12:15

Parallel Session Slot 1

Open Science in Research Culture: Reflect and Act for Change

Narrative CVs (almost everything you need to know!)


MSCA Fellows outside Europe


MSCA Contribution in bridging R&I and standardisation

12:15 - 13:00

Poster Presentation

13:00 - 14:15

Lunch Break

14:15 - 15:15

Parallel Session Slot 2

Sustainability, what is being done

How to Win a Competitive MSCA Global Postdoc Fellowship

The MCAA path to achieving inclusive Family & Career balance

Stakeholders within Citizen Science- Don’t forget the citizen

15:25 - 16:25

Plenary 2

THE VALUE AND FUTURE OF ALUMNI ORGANISATIONS

16:25 - 16:40

Group Photo

16:40 - 17:10

Coffee Break, Poster & Networking

17:10 - 18:00

Lightning Talks

19:30

GALA Dinner

Day 2 - Saturday 16-03-2024

8:00 - 9:00

Registration and Welcome

9:00 - 10:00

Parallel Session Slot 3

Crafting Tomorrow’s Science Policies: Empowering Early & Mid-Career Researchers

Funding opportunities under the MSCA Doctoral Networks

Evolution of Intersectoral Brain Circulation in ESR

MCAA Volunteering: your Career Catalyst!

10:10 - 11:10

Parallel Session Slot 4

Cultivating Research Culture: Nurturing Sustainable Careers in Europe

Science Communication: Success Stories & Future Directions

Orchestrating Excellence: Project Management within MSCA

Ethics in Research

11:10 - 11:40

Coffee Break, Poster & Networking

11:40 - 12:30

Plenary 3

Reflections on the past 10 years

12:30 - 13:00

Closing session of the AC

13:00 - 14:15

Lunch Break and Networking

14:15 - 14:45

Entry to the GA upon checking the identity and registration*

14:45 - 16:00

16:10 - 17:00

WORKING GROUPS MEETINGS

17:10 - 17:30

Coffee Break

17:30 - 18:00

Results of the General Assembly and Closing of the GA

* General Assembly is only for MCAA Members. Separate registration for both onsite and online participation at the GA is mandatory (If you register for the conference, it will NOT be considered as registration for the GA). Onsite participants must show the identity card while entering the GA.

Summary of abstracts

Narrative CVs: (almost) everything you need to know

Narrative CVs are a new CV format that is being rolled out by several funders with the goal to help researchers share their varied contributions to research while moving away from metrics such as JIF and H-index in a consistent way. This session will focus on the background and different formats of narrative CVs and their potential to shape the future of research assessment. It will also show how the research community is engaging with this new CV format, and how the new mentoring platform for narrative CVs hosted by the MCAA (PEP-CV) will help those who are developing their first narrative CV.

Sustainability, what is being done?

More info coming soon.

MSCA Fellows Outside Europe: Challenges and Perspectives

Being the MSCA fellow is as rewarding as challenging. It is especially true for two categories of fellows: (1) European citizens, whose research projects suppose the outgoing phase outside Europe; (2) non-European citizens, who receive European research funding to carry out their projects in Europe and in a third country or in Europe only. Based on the data collected from the MCAA members of non-European MCAA chapters, we will reflect on the challenges the fellows of both groups encounter during the MSCA programs and comprehend on the ways how could we make their experiences even better.

How to Win a Competitive MSCA Global Postdoc Fellowship

The MSCA Global Postdoctoral Fellowship is a 3-year fellowship that facilitates research mobility between Europe and third countries with a return phase of 1 year at a European Institution. Do you have excellent research ideas with potential global impact? Then an MSCA Postdoctoral Fellowship can be a path for supporting your career development. Join this grant writing session and meet successful applicants, evaluators, and research officers to learn how to write a competitive MSCA grant.

MCAA Volunteering: your Career Catalyst

This panel aims to showcase the transformative power of MCAA volunteering opportunities on career trajectories. Our speakers will share practical examples, illustrating how volunteering within the MCAA community has led to significant positive impacts on their professional journeys.
The session will cover diverse experiences, from leveraging MCAA activities for a successful academic career to transitioning from fundamental research into a variety of other careers. Through these real-life narratives, attendees will gain insights into how volunteering can contribute to finding one's true vocation.
Furthermore, our panellists will provide a professional perspective from career advisors outlining the various skills that can be cultivated through volunteering activities. Attendees will learn the value of enhancing their CVs with concrete examples of acquired experience, making a compelling case for the impact of volunteering on career development. Whether you're seeking a career change or aiming for an academic path, this session promises to be a source of inspiration and practical guidance for maximising the benefits of MCAA volunteering opportunities.

The MCAA path on achieving inclusive Family & Career balance

This session focuses on actions taken to ensure all MSCA fellows work and thrive in a safe environment, where balancing career & family or making plans for a family is a realistic option. It highlights past and present good practices and achievements. It discusses current and future plans led the GEDI Family TF in collaboration with Policy and Surveys WGs, ReMO and the MSCA Unit, aiming at producing evidence-based guidelines for all MSCA participating countries. It also provides space for discussing new collaborations within the MCAA and with external partners to maximise impact generation.

Stakeholders within Citizen Science- Don’t forget the citizen

The academic world is often depicted as an ivory tower of the elite. Untouched by the ordinary (non-academics), researchers traverse through various fields of knowledge and have an irreversible impact on life. Yet, the research process mostly undermines the importance of the main players- the people! Black, brown or white- people are constantly (often crudely) transforming the world. This session explores aspects of including diverse groups of citizens to participate in research; and its importance in democratising Science, promoting equitable data access and reducing social barriers.

Funding opportunities under the MSCA Doctoral Networks

The MSCA Doctoral Networks (DNs) provide invaluable interdisciplinary training and work-experience opportunities, ensuring PhD fellows are equipped to become the future problem-solvers of Europe. DNs are also an alternative, often not explored, opportunity for early to mid-career researchers who are trying to become independent researchers and develop their own European network. 

 The session aims to:

 1. Encourage alumni to apply for DN funding, giving tips and advice

 2. Highlight benefits of DNs from those who’ve learnt from the past, present and envisage the future of MSCA DNs

Evolution of Intersectorial Brain Circulation in Doctoral Candidates

In past 10 years, mobility between industry and academia has extensively increased. Intersectorial mobility is more frequent and taken under consideration in both sides. Industrial sector is targeting and recruiting more talent among researchers, while the academic sector is easing these transitions, like MSCA call 2023 displayed regarding the recent changes in the eligibility rules (maximum of 8 years full- time equivalent experience in research academia, section 2.3.2.

 This panel aims to discuss the evolution on the profile of Doctoral Candidates (DC), current trends in the mobility.

MSCA contribution in bridging R&I and standardisation

The objective of the session will be to raise awareness among MSCA fellows, alumni, and overall community on the new Code of Practice on standardisation in the European Research Area and promote the services and tools available to implement it. A roundtable involving reps from the European Commission, standardisation bodies, MSCA projects active on standardisation and HSBooster (a platform to support Horizon Europe projects engage with standardisation bodies and fora) will address key questions related to how MSCA could better promote the interaction between the researchers and standardisation communities and environments for mutual benefits, notably through collaborations in projects (eg through secondments) or training, in order to get researchers more familiar with and involved in the standardization process to valorize their project results.

Cultivating Research Culture: Nurturing Sustainable Careers in Europe

In the intricate ecosystem of research, culture serves as both compass and catalyst. This session embarks on a voyage through the European framework for research careers, unraveling its threads of opportunity and resilience. We delve into how research culture shapes the trajectory of scientists—from fledgling explorers to seasoned visionaries. By fostering an environment that celebrates curiosity, collaboration, and ethical conduct, we pave the way for sustainable careers. Join us as we decode the cultural nuances, ignite dialogue, and chart a course toward a Europe where research thrives, careers flourish, and innovation knows no bounds. 

Science Communication: Success Stories & Future Directions

This session is dividing in 3 talks and a Q&A session, with the ultimate aim of highlighting the success of activities of MCAA members in public engagement and science communication events done in the last ten years and through the eyes of a professional Science Communicator and Public Engagement manager external invited speaker, MCAA members will be presented to the importance of outreach as well as inspired and provided with tips and tricks to develop or improve their own public engagement initiatives.

Orchestrating Excellence: Project Management within MSCA

The essential role of Project Managers (PMs) in MSCA projects is often underappreciated, yet they are the backbone, ensuring smooth coordination and implementation. The discussion will focus on the varied challenges, specific requirements, and successful strategies used by PMs. Our diverse panel features a PM from the RM WG, a representative from REA and the EC’s MSCA unit, and an MSCA fellow. Each will share their unique perspective and experiences, highlighting best practices and how the PM’s role has continuously evolved over the past 10 years and still does.

Open Science in Research Culture: Reflect and Act for Change (TBC)

More info coming soon.

Crafting Tomorrow’s Science Policies: Empowering Early & Mid-Career Researchers

This session will focus on the pivotal role of young and mid-career researchers in shaping the future of science systems. It will delve into discussions on redefining how we conduct research. The speakers will discuss the role of global and EU-level initiatives such as CoARA and how technology can empower researchers. MCAA and its European and Global partners will discuss future collaborative efforts to propel science policy forward.

ABSTRACT Plenary Session 2: THE VALUE AND FUTURE OF ALUMNI ORGANISATIONS

This session is set to explore the significant contributions and evolving roles of Alumni organisations within the European framework, particularly those associated with flagship European programs such as Erasmus Mundus, EIT Alumni, and MSCA. Speakers will take the stage to elucidate the multifaceted value their entities bring to their respective European programs. The discourse will delve into the unique roles these organisations play in fostering a sustained and engaged community of alumni, enhancing professional development, and contributing to the overarching goals of European research and innovation. The session will also cast a forward-looking lens on the future of alumni organisations within the European context and European research policies.

ABSTRACT Plenary Session 3: Reflections on the past 10 years

As we commemorate the 10th anniversary of the Marie Curie Alumni Association (MCAA), this plenary session invites attendees to join a reflective journey through the Association's transformative decade. In this plenary, speakers from the previous Boards of the MCAA will share their insights and experiences, weaving a rich tapestry of the Association's evolution over the past decade. We will delve into the milestones, challenges, and triumphs that have marked the association's journey. Personal narratives will illuminate the growth and impact of the MCAA, offering a multifaceted view of the association's contributions to the research community and its members. The session will also explore the evolution of the MCAA's mission, initiatives, and community engagement, reflecting on how the association has adapted to the changing landscape of research and academia. This exploration will foster a polyphonic dialogue on the vision and aspirations for the next decade of the MCAA.

ABSRACT Session Ethics in the research environment

This session delves into the critical aspect of ethics within research environments, shifting the focus from traditional ethical concerns  to the intricate social and individual issues that The focus is on critical issues such a harassment, discrimination, mental health, and the dynamics within professional relationships, particularly those involving early career researchers and their supervisors. During the session, we will look at the legal framework, with a particular emphasis on European standards. This part provides an overview of the legal protections and obligations that underpin ethical conduct in research, offering attendees an understanding of their rights and the legal avenues available to address ethical misconduct. Following this, the discussion will addresses the impact of unethical behavior on mental health in the research sector. It will examine how negative workplace interactions and environments can affect researchers' well-being, and it will offer strategies to mitigate these effects.  Finally, the discussion will deepen the the psychological dimensions within research settings, and then highlight importance and complexities of whistleblowing and its crucial role in maintaining ethical standards and transparency in research environments. The session will also serve as the public introduction of the MCAA Whistleblowing Channel, a platform specifically designed to support MCAA members report unethical behaviours.

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