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2017 BIPM-EURAMET "TC Leadership" course

Eighteen participants from 12 EURAMET member countries have successfully completed the BIPM-EURAMET "TC Leadership" course. The training they received will enable them to become more effective in their involvement in the CIPM MRA. It will also allow them to make personal contributions in their possible future work as Technical Committee (TC) Chairs or in supporting the Chairs in CIPM MRA related matters.

Significant interest in the BIPM Capacity Building and Knowledge Transfer (CBKT) programme from National Metrology Institutes (NMIs) and Designated Institutes (DIs) in Europe prompted EURAMET to initiate and provide financial support for the organization of the BIPM-EURAMET TC leadership course.

The course was held at the BIPM from 7-10 February 2017. As stated by Katharina Zellhofer, a participant from Austria, "I got a much better understanding [of the work as TC-Chair] and therefore will be able to support my colleagues and may implement relevant information where needed. I am very grateful for this participation." This underlines the benefits that NMIs, DIs and EURAMET will gain from the transfer of knowledge, as the participants disseminate the expertise they gained throughout their particular metrology community.

The course content was designed for experienced TC members within EURAMET who have already been involved in the CIPM MRA and its processes. It provided participants with: an understanding of the importance of metrology in the global quality infrastructure; aspects of mechanisms of the CIPM MRA; specific requirements of various metrology areas on comparisons; and representation of calibration and measurement capabilities (CMCs) and regional requirements of EURAMET on the operation of the CIPM MRA. Lecturers, including experts from EURAMET and BIPM staff members, shared their experience and gave personal perspectives on a range of topics.

Dr Graham Machin, a lecturer from the NPL (UK), shared his personal experience on how to lead and organize committees for effective progress for the whole community, and how to identify and develop leaders through the TC. He noted that management of a TC is a very responsible position and requires representation of an entire region's measurement specialists in a particular field. Participants greatly appreciated information about TC management, which is a difficult task, carried out voluntarily. With respect to this, Haris Memić, a participant from Bosnia & Herzegovina, stated in his feedback that "Even if we already knew a lot of about activities covered by EURAMET it was very useful to hear about the amount of work and time which has to be spent on chairing the technical committees, but on the other side also the enthusiasm which is needed to be efficient and effective to recruit other people by making and keeping them interested".

Steffen Rudtsch, a participant from the PTB (Germany), commented that "There were a lot of interesting solutions, worth adopting in other fields". This highlighted that although the course was aimed at TC chairs, some of the ideas and concepts presented will filter through to the Consultative Committees to improve the effectiveness of their existing processes.

Participants also gained practical experience through group working sessions reflecting the content of lectures. The first session related to comparisons. Participants examined different questions and examples for the calculation of key comparison reference values and degrees of equivalence between national standards. On the second day participants reviewed real CMCs and drafted comments regarding the supporting technical evidence, quality assurances and formatting Excel tables of CMCs. This session gave all participants 'hands-on' experience of how metrologists around the world can work together with the aim of ensuring the reliability of CMCs published in the BIPM key comparison database (KCDB).

"This was the first joint training course organised by BIPM and EURAMET, and I am convinced that it is very beneficial for both organisations and the participants. I think we achieved our aim to prepare possible future TC leaders for their responsibilities within the CIPM MRA, giving them a sound understanding of its structure and mechanisms which is the basis to do the job effectively," said Wolfgang Schmid, EURAMET's Member Service Manager. "I appreciated the committed and valuable contributions from lecturers and participants, the lively and constructive discussions and the excellent atmosphere. On behalf of EURAMET I would like to express our sincerest thanks to BIPM for hosting this course and all their support. We are looking forward to continuing our collaboration in knowledge transfer and capacity building."

Overall, the success of the course relied on the participants' involvement in discussions and group working sessions to receive a broader understanding of all aspects of metrology, from policy setting to practical implementation of certain mechanisms, while taking into account the specific requirements of a particular metrology area and region.

We thank all participants for their active participation in the course and wish them all the best in their future engagement in the operation of the CIPM MRA processes and involvement in the further development of EURAMET.

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