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SPIE leaders among Photonics21 members updating research plan at annual meeting

15 January 2010

BELLINGHAM, Washington, USA -- A new strategic research agenda was presented by Photonics21 President Martin Goetzeler, CEO of Osram, to Rudolf Strohmeier, Head of Cabinet, Information Society and Media, European Commission, at the Photonics21 annual meeting held in Brussels, Belgium, yesterday and today.

The Second Strategic Research Agenda in Photonics, titled “Light the Way Ahead,” provides a detailed overview of all economic fields in Europe utilizing photonics, and identifies research priorities and important economic objectives.Handover of the Second Strategic Research Agenda; from left, front, Martin Goetzeler, Rudolf Strohmeier, Thomas Geelhaar

Goetzeler reminded the 300-plus European Union photonics leaders at the meeting that the field is one of only five key enabling technologies being highlighted by the EU.

Thomas Geelhaar, CTO for Chemistry, Merck, presented Strohmeier with the Strategic Research Agenda for the Organic and Large-Area Electronics Working Group. The group recently merged with Photonics21 Working Group 4, previously named Lighting and Displays. The new group will be renamed.

Detlef Eckert, Director, European Commission, spoke on “The European Digital Agenda and Photonics.” The title of his talk reflected an upcoming name change for the Directorate of the European Commission, which has operated under the name “Information Society and Media.” The Directorate will be renamed “Digital Agenda,” and a new Commissioner will be named soon as well. Designee Neelie Kroes, formerly Commissioner for Competitiveness, and other designees for EU Commissioner posts have been participating in appointment hearings recently.

Eugene Arthurs, SPIE CEO, spoke on Green Photonics: U.S. Perspectives and Investments, and Robert Corriveau, President and CEO, Canadian Institute for Photonic Innovations, spoke on Photonics in Canada: The National Innovation Strategy.

SPIE Past President Malgorzata Kujawinska, Warsaw Univ. of Technology, is a Vice President of Photonics21 and sits on the Executive Board of the organization's Board of Stakeholders. She attended the meeting along with SPIE Immediate Past President María Yzuel, Univ. Autònoma de Barcelona; SPIE Director Hugo Thienpont, Vrije Univ. Brussel; SPIE Senior Director for Global Business Development Andrew Brown; and SPIE Europe Manager Karin Burger. Thienpont and Arthurs serve on the Photonics21 Board of Stakeholders, and Yzuel and Burger are contributors to Working Group 7, on Research, Education, and Training. SPIE was a sponsor of the Photonics21 annual meeting.

Starting with 250 members in 2005, Photonics21 has grown to encompass more than 1200 members in 49 countries. Almost half of the members are photonics companies, the majority of which are SMEs (small and medium-sized enterprises), and the rest are research centers and associations.

The project is organized into seven groups covering information and communication, industrial manufacturing, life sciences and health, lighting and displays, sensors and measurement, optical components and systems, and research, education and training.

SPIE, the international society for optics and photonics, was founded in 1955 to advance light-based technologies. Serving more than 188,000 constituents from 138 countries, the Society advances emerging technologies through interdisciplinary information exchange, continuing education, publications, patent precedent, and career and professional growth. SPIE annually organizes and sponsors approximately 25 major technical forums, exhibitions, and education programs in North America, Europe, Asia, and the South Pacific, and supports scholarships, grants, and other education programs around the world.

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Media contact:
Amy Nelson
SPIE Public Relations Manager
Tel: +1 360 685 5478