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The European Science Foundation appoints Véronique Halloin as its new President

The European Science Foundation (ESF) announces the appointment of Dr Véronique Halloin as its new President, with a focus on driving the Foundation’s strategy and development for  the next three years. A former Professor of Chemical Engineering and General Secretary of the Fund for Scientific Research (F.R.S.- FNRS), Dr Halloin is the first woman at the helm in the organisation’s 46-year history.

Dr Halloin brings strong management experience in the research policy and research management environments, being since 2008 the General Secretary of the F.R.S.- FNRS in Belgium. Under her leadership, the Belgian research funding agency was successful in reforming its evaluation procedures, adopting multi-annual strategic plans and modernising its research management tools in conformity with the highest standards in the field. Prior to that, Dr Halloin, a civil and chemical engineer by education and PhD holder in Applied Sciences, served as Professor and Director of the Chemical Engineering Department of the School of Engineering at the Free University of Brussels (Université Libre de Bruxelles – ULB). Other leadership roles included acting as President of the School of Bioengineering and Vice-Rector of the ULB, responsible for research and development.

Dr Halloin is active member in several high-level international bodies and Fora, such as the Science Europe, the European University Association, the CERN Council and the Global Science Forum. She was also a past vice president of the European Science Foundation.

The ESF General Assembly, attended by representatives of ESF Member Organisations, has endorsed the Executive Board’s decision to appoint Dr Halloin as ESF President, effective immediately.

Commenting on her appointment, Dr Halloin said: “ESF occupies a very important place in the European Research Area. That is why it’s truly an honour for me to have gained the confidence of the ESF General Assembly and to have been elected to this position of President. I am aware of my responsibilities in these troubled times, when science is constantly in the spotlight, is called upon at all levels and will have to face enormous challenges. I am convinced that our role will become increasingly important in Europe in the coming years. I would also like to congratulate former President Martin Hymes for the impressive work he has done since 2016: he was able to rely on an experienced and competent staff, with whom I look forward to working very quickly to develop our activities. I will put all my experience and my network at the service of the ESF strategy and its evolution”.

Dr Halloin succeeds Martin Hynes, who acted as ESF President since 2016, leading the Foundation’s transition to a new innovative model successfully. “It has been a privilege to work with so many talented people at ESF, with the Board and with the wider community. We have maintained an exceptional standard of service to Science and research during this time of transition to a service-based organisation”, highlighted Mr Hynes. Welcoming Dr Halloin on board, Mr Hynes commented: “I have appreciated Dr Halloin’s supportive actions as Vice President of ESF in the past and have confidence that she will successfully guide ESF into an even more constructive role in the European Research agenda”.