Hybrid Science Diplomacy meeting at ITER – March 2022

On the 10-11 March 2022, FMSTAN convened a hybrid meeting of members, in collaboration with the sister network of Science Diplomacy Coordinators in EU Ministries of Foreign Affairs.

The join Science Diplomacy meeting was held at ITER in France, the site of construction of the world’s largest fusion reactor experiment.

The meeting followed on from the French EU Presidency Meeting on International Science Collaboration that took place on the 8th March in Marseille. As circumstances in the Ukraine erupted only shortly before the meeting, the event took on a particular significance and importance as the role of science in diplomacy and international affairs was suddenly front and centre. Despite the upheavals, the meeting was well attended both physically and online and featured presentations from the Director General of ITER, the European Space Agency, a former US Science Advisor the Secretary of State, the Swiss Ambassador for Science Diplomacy, the European Commission Joint Research Centre, among others.

The physical participants were lucky enough to receive an exclusive tour of the construction site of the huge Tokamak reactor at the heart of the ITER project. This was an important meeting discussing a breadth of topics that have come to the fore in the last couple of years, and an excellent opportunity for network members to meet and network.

FMSTAN would like to thank ITER for generously hosting meeting and the Swiss Ministry of Foreign Affairs and Joint Research Centre for their sponsorship.