President’s Report

Jerry Hopwood, UNENE president

Iceberg analogies come to mind as UNENE paddles hard under the water

From a new website and learning portal under production to new partnerships culminating in a fully-realized collaboration hub, there are exciting changes coming to UNENE. Read Jerry’s report from the March 2021 newsletter.

MARCH 12, 2021

Dear Colleagues, 

I feel the need to write this column quickly, because otherwise, times will have changed before I finish! 

We do indeed live in changing times; the continuing, long-drawn out COVID-19 pandemic is the most obvious change in our world, but other far-reaching changes are also affecting the nuclear community – and in a beneficial direction in many cases. The common theme is the need to evolve and adapt to change. UNENE shares this imperative, and our newsletter is full of activities and events showing our pathway to positive change. 

UNENE’s mandate is a reliable constant and touchstone during these times. We continue to focus on our unique partnership between industry organizations and universities, and to work on our education programs (a focus in this newsletter), on research, and on outreach both between our members and stakeholders, and to the broader community. Our response to change is to look at how we can more fully fulfil our mandate. As this newsletter is written, we are working on further development of our UNENE Collaboration Hub initiative, central to business planning for the future. 

Meanwhile, UNENE has had a busy agenda for late 2020 and the beginning of this year. Some highlights: 

  • Assisted in the development of two Research Chair program renewals, and in NSERC funding applications; 
  • Review of the latest round of UENENE Research Cooperative Projects; 
  • Partnership between COG and UNENE for coordination support to enable successful university participation in supplier-led COG R&D projects; 
  • Our Annual R&D Workshop, held fully on-line for the first time, with our highest-ever level of participation; 
  • UNENE-coordinated university Round Table providing feedback to the Canadian Government’s Radioactive Waste Policy Review; 
  • Input to the International Panel on Climate Change; and 
  • A UNENE-moderated panel of universities as part of the Canada-Romania Virtual Trade Mission. 

Coming up, UNENE will be working with our Board of Directors to finalize our three-year Business Plan, to bring together our work in research coordination, in outreach and in building collaborative relationships with other collaborators, all with the overarching commitment to provide added value to our members and to the nuclear community at large. 

Stay tuned! We see a very positive future for UNENE. Here’s hoping it will not be long before we can get out to our member locations and say hello to everyone in person. 

– Jerry