Conference Steering Committee


Jason Rutter (Conference Chair)
ESRC Centre for Research on Innovation & Competition, University of Manchester

Picture of Dr Jason Rutter Jason was born just outside Manchester in 1969. He studied drama before completing his PhD on interaction and stand-up comedy at The University of Salford. A sociologist and Research Fellow in the ESRC Centre for Research on Innovation & Competition at the University of Manchester his current research and publication interests centre on social aspects of the use of leisure technologies especially issues of consumption, trust, and interaction within domestic spaces. These fall broadly into three empirical domains: computer gaming, counterfeits and computer-mediated interaction. He has published widely in these research areas and has the books "Understanding Digital Games" (Sage) and "Digital Games Industries" (Ashgate) due for publication this year. More info can be found at

Liz Fay (Conference Coordinator)
EU Funding and Development Manager, University of Manchester

Liz Fay Liz is graduate of History who has been working at the University of Manchester since 1991, she has been the University's central point of contact for European Commission RTD issues since 1995. She is responsible for the central management and administration of the University's European Commission funded contracts, primarily those funded by the European Commission's Framework Programmes, however, this also includes other areas of the European Commissions funding regime (EC Tenders, EU-INDIA, ASIA LINK, INTAS, EIE Programme, etc). Together with Dr Jason Rutter, Liz has been responsible for the strategic planning of the Manchester Marie Curie Conference. Liz will be available throughout the Conference, should any of the speakers or delegates wish to contact her please ask at the registration desk.

Ian Browne (Conference Chair)
School of Physics and Astronomy of the University of Manchester at Jodrell Bank

Ian Browne Ian is a Professor of Radio Astronomy at Jodrell Bank Observatory. He has coordinated two research training networks; one FP4 and one which is running at the moment in FP6. Ian's research interests are in using gravitational lensing to learn about the properties of distant galaxies. Ian is involved in the strategic organisation of the conference, having come up with the idea of hosting a Marie Curie Conference in Manchester.
  Begona Arano
European Commission

Begona Arano


Begoña Arano was born in Madrid (Spain). She studied Biological Sciences at the Universidad Complutense de Madrid where she completed an MSc in Zoology. Shortly after she started working on her PhD funded for two years by the DAAD and for one year by the Royal Society. After obtaining her PhD in 1988, she held various research positions at the Spanish Research Council (C.S.I.C). In 1996 she was awarded an individual Marie Curie Fellowship to work for 2 years at the Department of Biological Sciences of the Open University in the UK. In 1998 she joined the European Commission as a Scientific Officer at Directorate-General for Research, within the Unit for Marie Curie Fellowships (Improving Human Potential Programme). Since 2005 she has been working as Assistant to the Director for The Human Factor, Mobility and Marie Curie activities within Directorate-General for Research.

Frank Marx
European Commission

Frank Marx Frank was born in 1963 close to Aachen in Germany. He has a background in Political Sciences and German Literature and specialised in EU policy. His thesis on EU Regional Policy was published in 1992. Some vocational training in marketing and economics rounded up his profile. He started his professional career as an information officer for the Euregio Maas Rhein (cross-border cooperation between Belgium, The Netherlands and Germany) and gained experiences for a couple of years at the European Department of the German Federal Ministry for Economics. Since 1997 he is working for the European Commission. He developed and implemented a training strategy for the YOUTH programme, did a side step in working for the European Year of People with Disabilities in 2003 and then returned to the area of research, training and education. Since 2004 he is the Scientific Officer for Marie Curie Research Training Networks in the area of Economic Social and Human Sciences.
  Dagmar Meyer
University of Göttingen, Germany

Dagmar Meyer



Dagmar M. Meyer was born in Germany in 1967. She studied Mathematics and Physics at the Universities of Heidelberg, Cambridge and Barcelona (UAB). After her PhD she went to France for a post-doc at the Université Paris 13, funded first by the french Ministry of Foreign Affairs and then by a Marie Curie individual fellowship. In 2001 she returned to her native Germany where she currently holds a position as Assistant Professor of Mathematics at the University of Göttingen. Since her time in Paris Dagmar has been actively involved in the Marie Curie Fellowship Association (MCFA), first as one of the co-ordinators of the French national group, then at European level holding various positions within the Administrative Board (until October 2005), including Treasurer, Secretray General and Chair. Dagmar's work for the Association has allowed her to get an inside view on many issues related to scientific mobility and career progression of early career researchers, both through many personal contacts with Marie Curie fellows from across Europe and by participating in a number of joint projects with other European organisations such as Eurodoc, Euroscience or the European University Association. Since the beginning of 2005 Dagmar has also been a member of the European Commission's External Advisory Group on Human Resources and Mobility. For more details please see the interview 'Helping Fellow Nomads' and the cross-interview 'Young researchers in motion' on the official Marie Curie Actions website (both of them from 2004).
Conference Assistants
  Kerry Chantrey
EU Funding and Development Officer, University of Manchester
  Kerry has been a member of the EU Funding Team since the start of January 2006. Prior to working at the University of Manchester , Kerry worked on ERDF funded contracts for almost 5 years, both with a University and a local Council. Throughout the preparation for the conference, Kerry has been on hand to assist with the development of the website, along with planning of the conference and liaising with speakers and guests. During the conference, Kerry will be on hand to assist delegates, speakers and guests with their individual requirements. Kerry can be contacted, on the day, via the conference registration desk.
  Richard Hamer
EU Funding Assistant,
University of Manchester
  Richard graduated in Management and Accounting in 2004. He initially began a career in Accountancy at the University of Central Lancashire but then moved into the field of research administration, when he joined the University of Manchester in May 2005. His first role was as Research Funding Services Assistant but was then swiftly promoted to EU Funding Assistant in October of the same year. His responsibilities include the distribution of European funding intelligence and the management of the University’s Euro-Account. Richard has assisted with the general organisation of the conference and will be on hand throughout the event for any queries speakers and delegates may have.