EPE’21 ECCE Europe will be virtual

Dear EPE Members,
Dear Committee Members and recipients of the EPE Newsletter,

After the up´s and downs in the corona pandemic year 2020, with all the consequences we had to follow due to the governmental regulations, I am happy to learn that this year, thanks to the crash actions in the development of vaccines, we see some light at the end of the tunnel that will allow us to smoothly move back to “normal” life.

However, a deep analysis of the situation in the different countries resulted in a high risk of travel restrictions to and inside the European Union still being in place. This will have a major impact for companies, universities and research institutes to allow their staff and students to participate in face-to-face events in 2021. As a consequence, EPE Association has decided to organize this year’s EPE ECCE Europe Conference once more as a virtual event. Our local organizing team is making all efforts to select a proven media tool for the online conference, so we can provide our participants with the best possible online experience. EPE´21 ECCE Europe will compile high level expert keynotes and presentations. All participants will of course have the possibility to attend the presentations, followed by Q & A slots. Again, this year we are offering an outstanding technical program with many expert presentations from industry and academia as well as timeslots for technical discussions in addition to the virtual poster sessions, industry sessions and the online exhibition. I invite all of you to take this unique chance to participate at this high-level technical event transporting all sessions to your screen directly.

With this newsletter, I would also like to take the opportunity to inform you about the changes in the head office of the EPE Association in Brussels. Brigitte Sneyers, who served as Secretary General for more than 30 years, since the foundation of the EPE association, has effectively retired on 31 January 2021. Brigitte was the main driver to develop the EPE Association, the EPE Conference and all related topics to the worldwide renewed Power Electronics Technology Platform, for an exchange of information among experts from Industry and Academia. All of the EPE community would like to thank her for her outstanding work and commitment. Brigitte was known for her knowledge in organizing large events, her ability to present ideas in developing the EPE Association clearly in all relevant committees, her cooperative working style and her receptiveness to new tasks. All of these were success factors to survive even in difficult economic times, and develop the EPE Association to this high level we have today.

Of course, when a cycle comes to an end, we need to start a new one. After a hiring process in the middle of last year, Dr. David Oliva Uribe was invited to succeed Brigitte. David has started his official role as Secretary General on the 1st of February 2021. David has an excellent technical university education, more than 20 years of professional experience in university and industry environments, including scientific research, university-industry collaboration and European policies for research, innovation and international collaboration. David is 45 years old, speaks 4 European languages, is married with one daughter and lives in Brussels. He managed multidisciplinary projects, handled membership services with doctoral programs together with industry partners and established a professional network within European countries and Central America. David has good connections to organizations in the USA and Asian countries.

From February 2021 onwards, David took over the full responsibility of Secretary General of EPE Association in all aspects, including the management of the local team.

We all understand that this is a big challenge, in particular for the time being due to the impact of the  COVID-19. Besides a strategic future development of the EPE Association and Conference, all activities are focused on organizing another successful virtual EPE ECCE Europe Conference this year.

David as a single person cannot execute this job without the full support and cooperation from the relevant teams. For this reason, I would like to motivate all committees (Executive Council, International Scientific Committee, General Assembly and Coordination Committee) to welcome David and to fully support him. The EPE Board is very happy that David accepted the challenge in taking over this responsibility and of course we advise and help him to push EPE towards new targets.

I would like to ask the responsible persons from IEEE PELS – in particular the President and the members of the Coordination Committee – to give David a warm welcome and to continue our for both party’s beneficial cooperation, as we have built it up over the past years.  

Also, I am looking forward to all conference contributors and participants, to continue their support to the EPE Association, to maintain a high-level technical platform for an exchange of information and open innovation in the field of power electronics here in Europe.  

I wish David fun in this new job and great success in developing EPE in the future.


Leo Lorenz (in accordance with the Board)
President

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