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December 31, 2007

WRECKED "EuroDoc"? Is it in Order or out of Order?.

Eurodoc' is a kind of an association or organization established during 2000-2001 to represent young scintists, namely postdocs and others. What is representing means (you can read all those "whatever's" in their websites...!) is to provide support system for young researchers and lab members in European countries?.
Though, the center of this eurodoc is located in Sweden!, postdocs from several european countries participate as members and board members in this organization. Eurodoc is basically a initiative emerged after noticing the preceding activities of their US counter part, the fledgling NPA (National Postdoc Association).
They both claim too highly of their organizations but the truth is otherwise (what have they done so far?). Their cliams are too high with regard to their accomplishments so far, none of the board members who started this NPA or Eurodoc is no more active, those newbie's who are the board members now and holding positions at present do not seem to have any idea about how they can be a voice to postdocs and bring changes to the existing age old policies that has too many holes and flaws, besides the current postdoc policies are less atractive to the postdocs.

In brief, postdocs all over the nation must ask for their achievements so far, from the year of establishment to now, it is almost 5-6 years, what did they do for Postdocs?. Besides, meetings, stage talks, wine and dinings, having some grants, what exactly did NPA and Eurodoc had accomplished for postdocs, what kind of benefit package they have secured for postdocs (Can they in anyway compare to the achievements of UCONN Health Center Postdocs Union Achievements?, read in this blog about UCHC Union activities, also read: A Union Contract Aimed at Preserving the Postdoc Experience Beryl Lieff BenderlyUnited States2 April 2004 ]

The following e-mail message from one of the past board member and a postdoc well wisher tell you the stories of what is going inside Eurodoc?. Is is it in order of functioning?. OR?.

Read further:

Dear Eurodoc members, old members and friends of Eurodoc,

After a long time being involved in Eurodoc I finally have to say goodbyeto Eurodoc. Actually, I have already been living in some (Far/South) EastAsian countries for year and I haven't been following Eurodoc discussionsfor one and a half years (if not more).However, since my email account at my former employer's will be terminatedon December 31st 2007 and since I haven't been able to follow Eurodocdiscussions and policies I think it is appropriate to say goodbye.

Importantly however, before I say goodbye to the organization that I havebeen actively involved in between 2000 and 2002 and later on behind thescreens I would like some attention for the efforts of the first board ofEurodoc that have never been published on Eurodoc's website, notwithstanding many promises from several of the succeeding Eurodoc boards.This first board had been elected at Eurodoc's first annual meeting inUppsala, Sweden, March 2001, and some of the members (Enrico Piazza,myself) and some others (Claire Poinsot, Sofia Murhem, James Grooves,Susanna Cebrian, Peter Kerey) had been involved in the making since 2000.

The Eurodoc board consisted of myself (president until Socratessubmission), Toni Gabaldon (vice-P, local organizer), Nils Morner(secretary until summer), Daniel Mueller-Etienne (secretary since summer),Enrico Piazza (member), Alex Lewis (member, became member/active after theSocrates submission).It was this board, elected in Uppsala, 2001, and retiring in Girona, 2002,that was responsible for the charter that you are modifying regularly. Itwas also this board that was responsible for for the first SOCRATES grantproposal which enabled us to organize the second Eurodoc meeting in Gironaand that provided the funds for the official registration. This board,starting from scratch, had to initiate and establish connections with theSocrates' granting institution (connections already having establishedsince 2000, thus before the first Eurodoc conference took place), as wellas had to publish papers to convince the SOCRATES refereeing committeethat we were active, well-determined and successful in getting attentionand worth their money.Therefore we published prior to the Socrates review in MCFA News, ScienceNext Wave, and the latter's editors also got the chief editor of Scienceconvinced to write some words about us in Science itself.Similarly, we also published in Nature to raise attention for the Gironameeting in 2002.

We also put effort in having the SOCRATES proposal submitted in time (30September 2001) in order to know the outcome (December 2001) long beforethe meeting took place in order to secure the financially less fortunateparticipants of a smooth ticket refund.We also knew from previous "Europeanizing-scientist-efforts" that thoseinitiatives fell into passivity and desinterest because the members werenot actively involved in getting results for themselves. Therefore wecontacted Science (in 2000, thus also before Uppsala) to start the ScienceNext Wave Eurodoc Exchange series that enabled every member to raiseattention for its own national cause by publishing their most importantissues together with a separate publication with suggestions of how thoseissues could be solved.Summarizing the officially retraceble records of the Eurodoc board of2001-2002 and help of indiviual members after their term are below:
1) the first SOCRATES grant that included funds for both
- the meeting in Girona
the official registration2) the Eurodoc charter3) MCFA News vol3(1) Science Next Wave: the Eurodoc Exchange series5) Science, the Editorial on October 12th, written by its editor-in-chief Don Kennedy Nature 2002 vol 415:259, Nature 2002 vol 418:178) Nature 2004 vol 427:3789) EMBO Reports 2006 vol 7:961It is true that we are not the founding board because the officialregistration took place after our term. Therefore I am not interested insemantic (or any other discussions either) about who's the founding boardor not.However, I hope you will do some justice to Eurodoc's first board and haveit listed at the Eurodoc website under the “Eurodoc-board history” sectionas well as have our publications published under the corresponding sectionof the website (“eurodoc in the press”). It would be my new years wish formy old board members.Best wishes for 2008 and good bye,Raoul Tan, Eurodoc president 2001-2002PS as stated I'm not interested in discussions, I don't have the time andI had these with several former board members already. However, you canread my private email address in the next message.

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