A letter from Professor Alberto Bardelli, President of the European Association for Cancer Research

Alberto Bardelli

Dear EACR members,

I took up Presidency of the European Association for Cancer Research at the EACR25 Congress in July 2018. As we enter 2019 it is my pleasure to write to wish you a happy New Year and to tell you a little about my aims for the development of our Association over the next couple of years.

Today’s science is tomorrow’s medicine: This is what the EACR is about, supporting outstanding science, top notch discoveries and breakthrough ideas that lead to new therapies for cancer patients.

Strengthen EACR Membership

We want to connect and support as many researchers as we can. We have a growing membership of more than 10,000 researchers in over 100 countries, but there are many more potential members we have yet to reach.

Our affiliated national societies have a large role to play, as they bring many members to our community. We have also just set up a partnership with the International Association for the Study of Lung Cancer (IASLC) to give the members of each society reduced price access to membership of the other society, and I invite you to visit the IASLC website to find out more about membership.

As always I am delighted with the dedication shown by our EACR Ambassadors, members who volunteer to spread the word about the EACR community. We also aim this year to reach out to researchers in countries and institutes where we currently have few members.

Bridge gaps: across disciplines and across international borders

Over the next few years the EACR will continue to support the ideal that science has no borders, and where you are based should not make a difference to your ability to conduct research. We are living in a complicated political situation in Europe but the EACR will stand for the concept of a united European research community, something that is incredibly important for all of us. Our Meeting Bursaries and Travel Fellowships are a great example of how we bring researchers together across national borders.

2019 also sees the continuation of our partnership with the European Society for Medical Oncology (ESMO), with three collaborative events: the ESMO Symposium on Signalling Pathways in Cancer (26-27 April 2019, Barcelona, Spain), the Joint EACR-ESMO Conference: Liquid Biopsies (15-17 May 2019, Bergamo, Italy) and the exciting congress, ESMO 2019 in Partnership with the EACR (27 Sep – 01 Oct 2019, Barcelona, Spain).

Focus on supporting early-career researchers

Today’s early-career researchers represent the future of cancer research. The EACR already puts a lot of effort into supporting early-career researchers, and I want to place even more focus on this in 2019 and beyond. This includes supporting equal opportunities and platforms for female scientists in our conferences and funding programmes.

Build connections with industry

In a rapidly transforming research environment, career paths of PhDs and postdocs are also changing. Biotech and Pharma play a big role in moving research forward. There are outstanding opportunities for young researchers in industry, and we are committed to helping our members to find new research and career opportunities there.

Develop our focus on basic science

Today’s science is tomorrow’s medicine: new cancer pathways, innovative therapies, smart tests to find cancer early, non-invasive approach to monitor cancer are continuously being developed by PhDs in basic science laboratories.

As a cancer research community we can make a difference in patients’ lives.

My term of office as EACR President culminates in the EACR 2020 Congress (17 – 20 June 2020, Torino, Italy). The theme is “Innovative Cancer Science: Better Outcomes Through Research”, with a strong focus on crucial basic and translational research. We can’t wait to share more details with you soon, and I hope to welcome you to Torino, my home city, in 2020. You can already sign up for updates here.

Finally, I wish you a happy New Year, with the greatest success in your research and career throughout 2019.

Alberto Bardelli
President, European Association for Cancer Research

Professor, Dept. of Oncology, University of Torino-Medical School
Director, Molecular Oncology, Candiolo Cancer Institute-IRCCs