Brussels, 16 Sep 2002
Strong interest by the enlargement countries in the 'European Research 2002' conference is guaranteed, according to the European Commission.
With just two months to go before European Research 2002 kicks off (11 - 13 November 2002), the Commission is reporting keen interest from all over Europe, but especially Eastern Europe. Of the 2 000 registrations already received for the event, 20% have come from candidate countries, Poland leading the way with 150 registrations as at the first week of September. This trend should continue. "We were surprised by the number of people applying so early for the conference," said Michel Claessens, Press and Information Officer at the Research DG's Communications Unit. "We expected good numbers from Belgium and France, as the event is in Brussels, but at the moment we have more registrations from the UK and Germany. And, we are happy to say, almost 400 have come in from Eastern Europe."
Predicting a sell out
The conference appears well on its way to being a sell out. With a late surge of registrations expected just before the early-bird deadline and in the final weeks before the actual event, the Commission is predicting the numbers could even top 5 000. Also, as the enlargement debate steadily builds momentum, candidate countries attending the event can discover first hand how the Sixth Framework Programme and the European Research Area will benefit them. Using the on-line MingleZone (tm), participants can establish contacts with others even before attending the event to improve the networking opportunities once they get to the conference centre in Heysel, where the event will be held.
Conference admission: from €180 ('early-bird' price ending 15 September) to €250. Accession countries pay from €60 to €80.