The idea of organising the European Young Epidemiologists network within the IEA European Epidemiology Federation was presented on the occasion of the European Congress of Epidemiology held in Porto in September 2004 and was received with enthusiasm by young people from several countries. The realisation of this initiative was immediately supported by the IEA-EEF board. Since then, the president of the EYE has been a member of the European Federation board.
The IEA Executive Committee recently decided to create an international (worldwide) Early Career Epidemiologists group (ECE) within the IEA structure. A successful first meeting of ECE was held during the XIX IEA World Congress of Epidemiology (WCE) in Edinburgh (Scotland) in which the EYE has actively participated. As EYE is similar to ECE, it is going to be part of the worldwide group sharing the objectives and results. Currently, the ECE has a committee composed of seven emerging epidemiologists who are assisting the IEA Executive Committee with the creation of the ECE group. The current president of the EYE is the European delegate in the ECE committee.
The aims of this group are similar to those of the IEA, with a focus on identifying tools and opportunities to develop knowledge and careers in epidemiology for young people. The ECE has a variety of aims and purposes. It will aim to facilitate communication among ECE members engaged in the development of scientific knowledge through epidemiology throughout the world and it will promote the development and appropriate use of epidemiological methods in all fields of health through scientific meetings and workshops, publication of reports, and other activities. It’s initiatives will include the creation and maintenance of a network of colleagues in order to enhance scientific collaboration and the promulgate opportunities for funding, scholarships, exchanges, jobs, courses or events across the world. It will enhance communication and collaboration with other public health specialists (e.g. biostatisticians, nutritionists, environmental health professionals, and mental health professionals). Lastly, but not least, it will work towards these objectives without regard to race, religion, sex, political affiliation, country of origin or social grouping.
We think that this is an extraordinary opportunity to establish a global dialogue among early career professionals engaged in the field of epidemiology. Several activities are going to be announced in the near future like a mentoring scheme, and facilities to attend conferences, among others.