Coordination and organisation
EurNegVec, as a concerted Action, will provide the background and framework for coordination and
dissemination of results of investigations financed through on-going international or domestic grants of participating scientist as well as the funding of exchange of researchers. The coordination and organisation of this Action will strictly follow the regulations of COST. The main administrative body of the network responsible for implementing the Action will be the MC. The MC will keep a close collaboration with the COST Office and will be the only one to communicate with the later. The MC will be responsible for organizing and planning all the major activities and will be convened by representatives of the network members, with two members from each participating COST country.
The first MC meeting will be organized within the first 3 months after the Action comes into existence. During the first meeting, the following will be determined:
(1) The MC positions and Committees will be elected: one Chair, one Vice-Chair, a STSM Assessment Committee (AC), an Editorial Board (EB) and a Dissemination Group (including the Webmaster). The AC will be coordinated by a manager and will include at least four members from different countries. The EB will include an experienced researcher from each WG. Additionally, a Core Group (CG) formed by the MC Chair, Vice-Chair and WG Coordinators will be formed. Its main tasks will be to monitor the progress and to assign resources.
(2) The MC will set up the WGs and will elect for each a Coordinator and a Deputy Coordinator. The timeline for submitting PR will be also set during the first MC meeting. As a rule, Deputy Coordinators will replace Coordinators when the later become unavailable for unforeseen reasons (i.e. medical conditions).
(3) The MC will set up and approve concerted milestones and deadlines for the deliverables of the Action.
(4) The MC will decide the date and the location of the first AC and will elect a COC. Subsequently, the MC will meet every twelve months. For an efficient financial and time management, the MC meetings will be held in connection with other events in the Action (i.e. AC, WG meetings). Additional meetings of the Core Group will be scheduled when necessary as video conferences. The MC meetings will decide the date and location of the next AC and will appoint a new COC. The MC members will coordinate independently the participation of the respective national teams by advising them how to use cooperation tools, by facilitating and supervising application of scientists for STSMs, by organising national workshops or national meetings dedicated to young scientists (i.e. TSs). The MC will set specific milestones to be achieved until the next MC meeting. Using a simple but effective Quality Management System (clear responsibilities for each WG and Committee, decisional and selection transparency and continuous improvement) the achievement of the milestones will be assessed by the MC at each meeting.
As dissemination and transfer of knowledge is a key value to COST, the Action aims to publish precise guidelines to be used by policy-makers, industry, society or academic community. The Action will publish guidelines for standardized research methods and environmental monitoring of vectors and VBPs with focus on neglected diseases.
The Action’s specific website will be established within the first month after the Action comes into existence. In the initial stage, prior to the first MC meeting, the website will contain the elements from the full project proposal. After the first MC meeting, the full responsibility for the management and up-to-date status of the website will belong to the webmaster. The general structure and content of the website will be decided by the MC. The MC will set up strategies for seeking further additional financial support among the industry to insure the website maintenance even after the Action is closed.
Working Groups
Five WGs will be organized: WG1 (The “One Health” concept in the ecology of vector-borne diseases); WG2 (Barcoding, molecular diagnosis and next generation sequencing); WG3 (Geospatial tools in vector research); WG4 (Phylogenetics and phylogeography of vectors and vector-borne pathogens); WG5 (Rare and emerging vector-borne pathogens). Each WG will consist of one WG Coordinator, one Deputy-Coordinator and at least 15 expert members. Selection criteria for WG Coordinators will consider: (1) appropriate scientific background; (2) the previous experience in earlier COST Action(s); (3) gender. For Deputy-Coordinators, early-stage researchers will be considered (less than PhD+8 years). Expert members will be selected based on their scientific background and they should preferably originate from different COST countries.
The Coordinator will manage all the activities within the WG, will chair the WG meetings and will write the annual progress reports for the MC. The Deputy-Coordinator will prepare the minutes of each WG meeting. Expert members will act mainly as an advisory board and will be involved in organising the annual TS. During the Action, WGs 1-4 will each organize one TS.
Liaison and interaction with other research programmes
Co-operation with existing research programmes focused on related topics will be established. The MC, through its WGs and using detailed and well-structured website and mailing lists will expand cooperation possibilities. Scientists from non-participating institutions and countries will be invited to scientific events organized by the Action. Joint TSs with other related COST Actions will be a priority of the MC.
Gender balance and involvement of early-stage researchers
This COST Action will respect an appropriate gender balance in all its activities and the Management Committee will place this as a standard item on all its MC agendas. The Action will also be committed to considerably involve early-stage researchers. This item will also be placed as a standard item on all MC agendas. Gender equality will be promoted by encouraging female researchers to participate in the Action’s management (WG Coordinators, MC and CG members). An equal gender balance will be kept when selecting participants for STSMs and TSs. At the time of submission, this Action included 63 females and 65 males.
During each AC, a Young Scientist Award will be organized. Moreover, this proposal will be coordinated and is being submitted by an early-stage scientist (PhD + 5 years).