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Europe's planetary scientists meet MEPs, thanks to STS student

4 February 2011

Veronika at the Europlanet Dinner

STS Year 3 undergraduate Veronika Raszler has just organised a dinner debate at the European Parliament in Brussels for the Europlanet network of European planetary scientists. 

Europe is now recognised as a valued partner in planetary exploration by the American space agency NASA, and its expertise is much in demand by Japan, China and India, countries that are fast developing their own scientific programmes.

The dinner organised by Veronika (on February 2) was attended by Members of the European Parliament, Europlanet members from across the EU, and representatives of the European space and exploration industry. Britta Thomsen MEP, who hosted the dinner, said: “Europe's space programme is a standard-bearer for European research in all fields. European planetary science is in front when considering innovation and development of technology."

Veronika has learned a lot from her experience with the dinner debate. "Organising the Europlanet Dinner Debate at the European Parliament was a great - challenging but highly rewarding - experience, giving me incomparably useful insight into the work of the EU institutions, as well as EU-funded scientific organisations.

"Things I have seen and learned will definitely come handy for my postgraduate studies and future career."

Steve Miller, Head of STS and Europlanet coordinator at UCL, said:
"Veronika has done an amazing job. Before she started making contacts last year, Europlanet knew no one in the European parliament. Now we are recognised as a force to consider in shaping European research policy, and we have a permanent welcome in the Parliament."