|Truus van den Brink-Havinga
| The NWO institutes ASTRON and Nikhef used their connections to fill a day of inspiring presentations showing the marvelous science, experiments, and their connections in all possible aspects. The day was inspired by the guiding principles expressed by the EU Presidency holder during the first 6 months of 2016, the Netherlands. These guiding principles are a Union that focuses on the essentials, a Union that focuses on growth and jobs through innovation, and a Union that connects with civil society.
ASTRON and Nikhef organized together a one day conference at the ASTRON premises entitled "The Connecting Strength of Big Science Projects" for an audience of about 70 scientists, industry and innovation contacts and policy makers. World-class science topics were selected from both fields on two originally far separated research fields, radio astronomy and particle physics. The day showed that there are many connections, in science through astroparticle physics and in spin offs. Each agenda item had 2 speakers, each highlighting one aspect of the connection. Connecting science with science, connecting science with industry and connecting science with education were some of the liaisons that came across.
Connections between the presentations, speakers and audience were made by the chair Mark Beumer in a lively manner.
Both speakers and audience loved the new standard of connecting presentations. Mark Beumer went even so far as to connect the audience to their neighbours and to the presenters by reversing the Q&A session and asking questions to the audience and really activating the interaction and the look for innovation possibilities.
The next day a select group of participants paid an inspiring visit to the LOFAR super-terp where they could experience the connection of Big Science Projects with nature development.
We would like to see this event as the start of a series and a start of a new standard in presenting. Next opportunity should be aiming for a wider public. The first step is set in this AJDI.