May I ask you to introduce yourself briefly (name, nationality, Marie Curie Action, Project, international experience…)?
Hi all, my name is Mauricio Manfrini (33) and I come from Brazil. I was privileged to receive an ESR scholarship from the RTN SPINSWITCH (MRTN-CT-2006-035327) from 2008 to 2010. This RTN aimed to study the fundamental physics of spin current-induced ultrafast switching. The idea was to probe whether this new mechanism was more efficient in creating new types of memories. It turns out that it is more efficient! Currently the major memory players in the world are in the development phase for this new technology and soon we will have magnetic memories controlled by a simple electric current in your computer and mobile gadgets. Stay tuned!
The Ph.D research was carried out at IMEC in Leuven, Belgium. It is located 25 km away from Brussels. This centre is the largest European microelectronics center and focuses on investigate technologies that could be applied in the short-term (3-5 years). During my ESR time, I had the opportunity to spend several secondments at other partners in France, Spain, the United Kingdom and Germany. The mobility allowed by the Marie Curie Action is a major plus compared to other grants, and was definitely explored extensively in my case. These scientific collaborations were extremely fruitful and they culminated in more than 20 publications in prestigious journals.
After I finished my Ph.D I was offered the opportunity to continue working on these magnetic memories at IMEC. We are now implementing a pilot line of such technology and industrial partners from all over the world are joining our programme to learn from our findings!
Why did you apply for the Ordinary Board Member position within the MCAA?
During the RTN, I noticed that not all industrial partners are very well integrated into the network and as I was placed in an “industrial” research centre, I am convinced I can bring my expertise to help not only guide newcomers to use this opportunity more effectively, but also to encourage new companies to join and profit from the network.
As an Ordinary Board Member within the MCAA, what do you plan to do first? – or what is the first item you plan to put on the agenda?
The first item on my agenda would be to take a look at how the EU classifies these industrial partners and how we can start – and keep – an updated list of contacts within them.
What do you think the MCAA’s priorities should be?
I think the MCAA is a great initiative to help and support all Fellows; this could include bureaucratic and legal assistance to those in most need as well as keeping track of their career development during and after the network. The MCAA should also promote training on soft skills such as speaking in public, how to write a resume, etc. Finally, the MCAA should be represented in major educational events that take place yearly around the globe.
How do you plan to organise your work within the MCAA and especially your collaboration with the other Members of the Board?
As I mentioned before, I’m located very close to Brussels and commuting to any MCAA meeting would be a breeze. I intend to dedicate evenings and weekends to fulfill the needs of the MCAA.
How will your work within the association help build a “community spirit” among the Marie Curie Alumni?
The most important thing is to listen to Alumni’s preoccupations and to establish groups involving other Board Members. There is a large amount of expertise there that can be exchanged and should be used to its maximum.
Do you plan to meet Alumni? When?
Of course! Currently, we are organising the first Board meeting, which will take place in Brussels before the end of January 2014. There we will decide when we will meet other Alumni. Moreover, they can always contact me directly if needed.
What would you say to the Alumni, especially to those who elected you?
First of all, I am delighted and happily surprised I was elected to be part of the very first Board. I will always remain available to give Alumni support and to guide them if possible. I have a positive feeling regarding the Board Members and I am sure they are all here to give their best and to create the Association. So see you around!