Interview of the month: Spanish Meteorological Association
Interview with the President of the Asociación Meteorológica Española (AME) by the EMS Liaison Committee (EMS LC)
EMS LC: If you were to describe your society in one sentence, what would you say?
AME: Our society is a forum for lovers of Meteorology from all backgrounds and also a place where the professionals of meteorology and climatology who work in the sectors of academia, industry, communication and provision of services meet and develop activities that enhance the prestige and development of their profession. It was a single sentence but a long one I admit.
EMS LC: When was AME founded?
AME: In 1964, following the path of other meteorological societies and the ephemeral Spanish Meteorological Society created in 1927 that only ran for four years.
EMS LC: What are the objectives of AME?
AME: Our objective is to highlight and disseminate information on the importance of meteorology and climatology in our cultural environment and to encourage networking among those who are interested.
EMS LC: Could you explain the structure of your membership?
AME: We have four types of members: Founder, numerary, corporate and protector. The first and second types of members are in fact the same, since both have the same rights and obligations and only allow personal affiliations. The difference between them is merely honorary. The other two types allow the affiliation of people and/or institutions that wish to give us support.
EMS LC: What are AME’s recent achievements?
AME: We have devoted much effort to enhancing communication and outreach through social networking, our web page and the quarterly journal ‘Tiempo y Clima’ which has a twofold purpose: serving as a bulletin for communication between members and being one of the most prestigious publications on meteorology and climatology in the Spanish language, with a content suitable for different levels and accessible in print and electronically.
EMS LC: Where do you see the greatest challenges?
AME: In my opinion, the most important challenges for AME are internal reinforcement, the development of internet platforms and the creation, in addition to ‘Tiempo y Clima’, of a scientific journal in the field of atmospheric sciences in English.
EMS LC: Which activities are you planning for the coming months?
AME: At the beginning of March we will hold the bi-annual Scientific Meeting of AME, the 35th since the foundation of AME. It is in fact an annual meeting organized alternatively each year by AME and our colleagues in the Portuguese Association, APMG. It will be the 19th joint meeting of the two associations and therefore the annual meetings are also known as the Spanish-Portuguese Meetings of Meteorology. For the rest of the year, we plan to carry out some informative and outreach activities, the traditional photography contest and release three issues of our journal “Tiempo y Clima”. Finally we have to start the process of electing a new AME Board,; the current Board will end in February or March 2019. This will be a very busy year.
EMS LC: Are you collaborating with other EMS Members?
AME: As already mentioned we maintain a very close collaboration with the Portuguese association APMG and with other Spanish associations such as ACAM from Catalonia (AME will collaborate with the ACAM on local organization for the EMS meeting in Barcelona in 2021). AME also collaborates with the Latin American and Iberian federation of meteorological societies (FLISMET). We have also worked with the German association DMG on the development of a Spanish edition of the European Meteorological Society calendar and, with all EMS members, in the management of the Europhotometeo photography contest.
EMS LC: What do you expect from the EMS? In what ways can it help you to develop your activities?
AME: I would say that EMS is a reference in good management practices and a window to the future. I was recently a member of the EMS Council and I cannot express anything other than a feeling of gratitude for everything that I was taught there. And regards to the future, we hope to come up with ideas and to gain sufficient momentum and participation in order to make progress on the integration of EMS member societies.
EMS LC: What have been your most successful events in the last three years?
AME: Undoubtedly, our most successful event was our 34th scientific meeting in Teruel, a city in Spain’s so-called “cold pole”, but which welcomed the participants warmly.
EMS LC: What changes do you believe your society needs to make
AME: In the past two years, the AME has been carrying out a process of reform of its constitution; the formal ratification will be taken at the next General Assembly on March 4, 2018. The most important changes have affected the composition of the Board, the duration of the electoral mandates and the modalities of affiliation.
But besides that, I believe that the most important change that we will have to make sooner or later is to commence professional management of the Society sustained through a regular source of income beyond the partner fees.
EMS LC: Thank you very much for the interview!