Interview with ACAM Member Marc Prohom Duran
EMS LC: Is your job related to meteorology?
Yes, I’m the head of the Department of Climatology at the Meteorological Service of Catalonia (SMC). The SMC is the official meteorological service of the Catalan Government, and it was established in 1921.
EMS LC: What society are you a member of, and since when?
I am member of ACAM (Catalan Meteorological Society) since its foundation in 1995.
EMS LC: Why are you a member? What aspects of meteorology interests you most?
In 1995 I started my degree in Geography at the University of Barcelona, and I was very interested in climatology since the beginning. When ACAM organised the first conference on meteorology that year (Eduard Fontserè conference), I did not hesitate to join the society.
EMS LC: What is your favourite type of weather?
As a resident of the southern part of Europe and in a city close to the Mediterranean sea, I am keen to experience the meteorology of high latitudes. Snow is a phenomenon that I have a special predilection for, because of its low frequency here.
EMS LC: What is the extent of your involvement in your Met Society?
I became a member of ACAM’s board two years ago, and I am focused on the management of the international relations of the society, especially with the EMS, but also with other European societies.
EMS LC: What type of Met Society events do you like to attend? Have you ever attended an event remotely, via a webinar, Facebook Live, etc?
Part of my work in the SMC is to promote educational activities via webinars to primary and secondary school students in Catalonia. So I’m interested in similar experiences driven by other societies, such as those promoted by the Royal Meteorological Society and the University of Reading e.g. Come Rain or Shine: Understanding the Weather
EMS LC: What type of events would you like your organisation to host? Do you have any suggestions of new types of event to be run by your Met Society?
In fact we have an event well marked in red on our calendar: the organisation of the EMS Annual Meeting in 2021 (Barcelona Historical University). As regards to other events organised by our Society, we are limited by the fact that we are a small society, so we must look for synergies with other institutions (universities, weather services, media). We would like to engage with the media on explaining climate change correctly and being effective without sensationalising.
EMS LC: What has been your favourite event to date that was carried out by your Met Society?
Each year the Eduard Fontserè conference invites meteorological observers to explain the results of their observations. Apart from the incalculable scientific value of their work, I really enjoy how they communicate the human side of this activity: dedication, effort, meticulousness, sacrifice. I especially remember the story of an observer from Livingston Island (Antarctica) and the experiences of the most veteran observers who have decades of experience and funny anecdotes to tell.
EMS LC: What advantages do you get from being a member of your Met Society?
I am kept informed and up-to-date with meteorological activities held in Catalonia.
EMS LC: How are you kept informed of the activities of your Met Society?
The main way of communication is through the mailing list of the members and also through our Twitter account (@acam_cat).
EMS LC: How is social media used to support the activities of your Met Society? What more could be done to enhance the social media presence of your Met Society?
As I mentioned, Twitter is the fastest channel to communicate the latest news of the Society, especially everything related to the yearly conference (topics, lecturers…). Our intention is to prepare a newsletter for members and to get in touch with them at least twice a year.
EMS LC: What could be done by the EMS to enhance its support for your Met Society and the European meteorological community in general?
I think the EMS is making progress in networking with European meteorological societies, especially in the exchange of successful experiences, which can be adapted anywhere. The ems-message newsletter is a powerful tool for doing that.