"Scientific exchange must remain in flux"
The current situation and the increasing impact of the coronavirus (COVID-19) also affects the daily business of the German Materials Society (DGM). A large number of the events - some of which have a strong international character - are directly affected by this, but will take place in the usual quality despite the existing limitations of various participants. "We have worked on alternative solutions for our members, lecturers and participants who cannot be on site to maintain the important transfer of knowledge", states Dr.-Ing. Frank O.R. Fischer, Managing Director of DGM-Inventum GmbH.
The coronavirus and its containment currently paralyses a large part of public life. Whether it is culture, sports or society - events are cancelled or postponed throughout all of Germany. This development is highly regrettable, but certainly necessary. The status quo has reached a dimension for which the DGM has prepared itself in advance and initiated appropriate measures at a very early stage.
In concrete terms: The DGM events scheduled for the upcoming days and weeks will take place! Participants with limited travel opportunities can still participate fully via a web-based solution, and lecturers will also receive a presentation space for their lectures via the Internet.
"In these difficult times, we as DGM want to be a beacon for what is close to our hearts with our forward-looking and solution-oriented approach: The scientific exchange must remain in flux", Fischer states, and emphasizes: "Under no circumstances must this basis be allowed to break away in order to push forward formative developments in the future and thus be a reliable partner of the MatWerk community".
After several test runs and extensive fine-tuning, DGM has put together a setup on its feet that combines on-site events with internet-based participation. Participants and lecturers are connected via the Internet, can give lectures and exchange information via chat and voice function. This method will be used for the first time at the "5th Bioinspired Materials 2020 - International School and Conference on Biological Materials Science" in Irsee, Bavaria, starting next Monday (March, 16th).
"In the first place, almost a dozen of all lectures were planned to being held web-based. The latest developments have forced us to set up the event entirely as an Internet conference," Fischer emphasizes. "We have already received a lot of positive feedback from the conference participants, whereby it was repeatedly acknowledged how forward-looking and innovative we have been in finding solutions to keep the event alive.“