Dear colleagues and friends,
Since 2011, almost the start of the JPI Healthy Diet for a Healthy Life, I’ve been involved in the leadership of this important initiative. First, as deputy chair and in the last two years as chair. It has been a true pleasure contributing to the growth of the JPI with 26 countries involved at the moment, building the bridge between nutrition and health.
In research, but also in policy with the commitment of ministries of agricultural affairs, economic affairs and health. We have achieved so much! Numerous calls were launched, activities developed for national and international alignment, several very well received conferences and project meetings, meetings with the EC to connect and further develop our strategic research agenda, with health funds, within and beyond Europe, etc. Also the connection with the other JPIs and more in particular the JPIs FACCE and Oceans has really contributed to tackling major societal challenges.
It has also been a true pleasure working with you. It is my strong belief that international collaboration starts with the willingness and ability to really connect and understand each other. Our informal gatherings at meetings and conferences have really helped in this respect.
I would have loved to personally say farewell at our conference which was planned last week. Unfortunately this couldn’t take place and I spoke into a camera at our virtual event. At this conference I also personally welcomed our new chair Béatrice Morio who is very driven and motivated to further develop the JPI with the support of all of you.
I am convinced that I leave the JPI in very capable hands of the new chair, the secretariat, the management board, scientific advisory board and stakeholder advisory board of the JPI, and all of you as very important stakeholders.
I will remain involved in the MB as representative of The Netherlands and hope to meet you all again in person in the near future.