Mid Term Assessment Meeting held at the Office of the North of England Brussels on the 2nd & 3rd October 2003

Day 1 notes Day 2 notes


  1. These minutes should be read in conjunction with the power point presentations referenced in the relevant sections and also with reference to the results page of the Pro-Enbis web site: http//pro.enbis.org.
  2. The actions agreed during the meeting are summarised at the end of the minutes


Adam Jednorog (University of Wroclaw) Alessandra Giovagnoli (Uni Bo Italy) Shirley Coleman (Uni Newcastle) Ronald Does (IBIS UVA) Oystein Evandt (Impro) Lesley Fairbairn (Uni Newcastle) Anne de Frenne (Math-X) Rainer Gob (Uni Wuerzburg) Tony Greenfield (Greenfield Consultants) Alberto Luceno (Uni Cantabria) Xavier Tort Martorell (Uni Catalunya) Jorge Muruzabal (Uni Rey Juan Carlos) Antonio Pievatolo (IMATI Italy) Maria Ramalhoto (UTL Portugal) Pedro Saraiva (Uni Coimbra) Wim Senden (Eurandom) Poul Thyregod (Tech Uni Denmark) John Tyssedal (NTNU Norway) Henry Wynn (LSE) Petros Dellaportes (AUAB Athens) Froydis Bjerke (Matforsk) Meropi Paneli (European Commission) Daniele Romano (DIMECA)


Apologies for Absence:

Andrea Ahlemeyer Stubbe (Ahlemeyer Data Management) Stefano Barone (Uni di Palermo) Bo Bergman (Chalmers Uni) Christopher McCollin (Nottingham Trent Uni) Jeroen de Mast (IBIS UVA) Fabrizio Ruggeri (CNR IMATI) Paolo Giudici (Uni Pavia) Ron Kenett (KPA) Raffaello Levi (Politecnico di Torino) Irena Ograjensek (Uni of Ljubljana) Marco Seabra Reis (Uni of Coimbra) Susanna Kunttu (VTT) Justin Seabroook (Ricardo Engineering) Anne Shade (Good Decision Ltd) Dave Stewardson (Uni Newcastle) Kamil Torczewski (Uni Wroclaw) Dimitar Vandev (BSS) Andras Zempleni (Eotvos Lorand Uni) Lazlo Markus (Eotvos Lorand Uni)

Welcomes & Introductions

The members of the project were welcomed to the meeting and each were invited to introduce themselves to the group and the Project Officer from the Commission Dr Meropi Paneli

The group was advised that the focus of the meeting would be a review of project to date. The draft Mid Term Report had been drawn up by the Coordinators of the project which detailed all of the project activities to date

The meeting was chaired by Dr Shirley Coleman who commenced the meeting by initially outlining the agenda for the 2-day meeting. Comments were sought; there were no additions to the agenda

The group was advised that the Principal Investigator of the Pro-ENBIS project (Mr Dave Stewardson of UNEW) was currently unwell, however progress was being made and his condition continued to improve. The group were advised that the contract for this project lies with the University of Newcastle (not a named individual) it was reiterated that the University are committed to the continued Management & Technical co-ordination of the project and in the absence of Dave it was agreed that Shirley Coleman would take over his role in the project in the short-term. It was reiterated that the project outcomes and deliverables would remain unaffected. The group was reassured that their continued input is instrumental to achieving the objectives of the project. The group wished Dave a speedy recovery.

Meropi Paneli pointed out that according to the Description of Work, the following Mid-Term outcomes should have been fulfilled by Month 18 of the project:

The project assessment was performed at Day 2 after the status reports given by the Work-Package leaders in Day 1.

It was agreed that the presentation given by Meropi, which includes feedback from the project, would be placed onto the project web page. This has been done and is available at http://pro.enbis.org.


Notes of the meeting held in Barcelona August 2003:were accepted as an accurate record subject to the following amendment

To include section on Work Package 4

Detailed Work Review: Presentation by Work Package Leaders

The Work Package Leaders were invited to address the group and discuss progress of their relevant work package and give a summary of achievements in comparison with the Mid Term Target Outcomes (as outlined on page 53 of the Technical Annex)

A full review of project activity and results to date are available at the results section (pass word protected area) of the Pro-Enbis web site. The section shows the current Pro-Enbis results on a work package by work package basis for:

For succinctness these notes only note discussion/information that is not contained on the project web site.

Work Package 1: Design of Experiments

Work Package Leader: Henry Wynn (LSE)

He noted that he has moved from Warwick to LSE this year.

It was further noted that a small committee of partners had been set up who have helped with this Work Package. The group was advised that Rob Deardon is now working in Cambridge. It was reiterated that the work package is "On target" with deliverables

Workshops/Seminars/Industrial Visits/papers

Please see Pro-enbis web site for full details held to date.

Comments from the Work Package Leader

Future Plans

A 1 or 2 day workshop will be held on the 13th & 14th May 2004 at Matforsk. Full details of agenda and registration are available at the Pro-Enbis web site. The Workshop will be marketed at process engineering sector

Articles in the Popular Press

Henry advised the group that there were currently no articles published in the popular press for this workpackage. It was therefore agreed that this would be a priority and the deadline of Dec 2003 for 1 submission was set.

Additional initiatives

A half-day meeting on "Statistics and Mechanical Engineering: practical problems and methodological issues" was held at the Bologna Statistics Dept hosted by R Levi & D Romano on the 9th January 2003, there were 39 attendees. Full details can be found at http://www2.stat.unibo.it/NuovoSito2/eventi.htm

There are individual strong links within the work package but more outreach with improved widespread activity needs working on. It is envisaged that workshops and published papers will be strong at the end of the project. We need to attach to other conferences and add a WP1 Pro-ENBIS seminar.

Feedback from the Project Officer

Industrial visits - Questioned what are the criteria for selection for the type of industry? Meropi pointed out that review of Year 1 progress report and draft mid-term report did not reveal that the consortium has a strategy for targeting industries and realising the industrial visits. As the potential areas for the use of applied industrial statistics are huge, the selection of industries targeted should be done carefully, based on established criteria by the consortium who claimed a lot of experience (at the proposal submission level) in a wide spectrum of industries.

The Work Package Leader responded that the criteria is usually personal contact, he acknowledged that perhaps in the past we had not been very selective He agreed that a strategy for targeting industries needs to be established.

Meropi also asked how the visits were prepared; whether a survey of the specific needs of the company was carried out before the visit– what actions took place before the visit, at the visit and after it.

Meropi recommended this guidance and criteria to be made available on the project web.

It was further agreed that the template for keeping an overview and monitoring of the industrial visits and workshops help in the context of this project (sent by Meropi to the Co-ordinator on the 8th August 2003) would be uploaded onto the project web page. The template would represent an overview table, identifying, who, what, when and what is the activity range, what was achieved, what happened etc. This template also requires inclusion of a relevant URL for any additional information on the event and display power-point presentations (as a pdf. doc) delivered at the relevant events .

The group was advised that a meeting had been set up with the Web Master, John Logsdon on the 21st October 2003 to discuss the project web site and uploading the workpackage documentation onto the web.

Most of the material relating to the project was held on file by the Co-ordinators. It was agreed that the Co-ordinator would complete the templates in the first instance and that the partners would be contacted if/when there were gaps in the information.

Clarification was sought as to what in terms of the project is the ‘popular press’ the following were advised: good quality broad- sheet newspapers, periodicals, electronic media and regional newspapers especially the business sections, they are often of high quality and they are read by local industrialists. However concern was expressed that we face the issue that industrial statistics is perceived as a difficult subject and one that would be of little general interest. It was reiterated that the articles need to be pitched to a level aimed at the economy of the region. There are ample good case studies available for material

Work Package 2: Data Mining/Data Warehousing

Work Package Leader: Wim Senden (Eurandom)

Workshops/Seminars/Industrial Visits/papers/Journals

Please see Pro-Enbis web site for full details

Comments from the Work Package Leader

All work within the work package is currently on schedule. The group were advised that Andrea Ahlemeyer Stubbe and Paolo Giudici are both working hard in this work package. A data mining workshop had been held in Leipzig and Pro-Enbis had contributed to the costs of an invited expert from the USA (Prof. Friedman). The group was also advised that on the 6th November 2003, the Dutch statistical Society will have a day on data mining. There will also be a further event held in Leipzig in June 2004

Feedback from the Project Officer

Again, there is a need to profile and define the target audience for workshops, to tailor the content of the workshop for a particular audience. It was suggested that web mining covered such a broad area that clearer definition of the workshops’ purpose, aims and targets would be very beneficial; perhaps by writing a short paragraph about the detail of the work package in publicity material. It was agreed that a link would be made to the appropriate URL from the project web site to the home page of where the workshop was held.

Work Package 3: General Statistical Modelling, Process Modelling and Control

Work Package Leader: Tony Greenfield

Workshops/Seminars/Industrial Visits/papers/Journals

Please see Pro-Enbis web site for full details

Comments from the Work Package Leader

The group was advised that Process simulation training material has been circulated to the group and has been used in workshops and industrial visits. The Project Officer asked how does the work package establish contacts and it’s rationale for industrial visits?

Tony replied that for WP3 we wrote ‘cold’ to business, rather than those that we know. At one event 6 companies turned up (after fielding calls to 200) it is difficult to get people to attend. Another event is planned and is to be targeted at Northampton area in the manufacturing and service sectors. There will also be a 1 -day Six- Sigma Workshop to be held in the near future. It was further noted that WP3 has covered the deliverables already in the project in terms of workshops and industrial visits.

The target for published journal papers will be met, there was however an issue to raise the profile of the project in the popular press to try to persuade them to take articles. There has been an article in the RSS News and in an Italian periodical (Author Allessandra Giovagnoli).

Feedback from the Project Officer

Meropi wished to compliment Tony on the process simulation software (based on the manufacture of aluminium wheels) and work carried out for this WP. Again it was asked why did the work package choose this particular activity. Tony responded that they had already done some work in this area and the simulation was based on their experience and expertise and work with industrial clients in this area. Xavier had provided the original model and had real data based on Spanish industry. The information on an Oil Filter company was provided by ISRU in the UK. The audience for the material (to be used in workshops and training sessions) will be R&D staff in companies, plant managers and those involved in improving their processes, in recording and improving data and running experiments. A further simulation will be on wood pulp. This is a different process, which is more akin to a chemical process. The material will be given free of charge to Pro-ENBIS members to use during the duration of the project. The simulation software is available in several languages.


Work Package 4: Reliability, Safety & Quality Improvement

Work Package Leader: Maria Ramalhoto (IST)

Workshops/Seminars/Industrial Visits/papers/Journals

Please see Pro-Enbis web site for full details

Comments from the Work Package Leader

Future Plans

Future project activity will include:

It was noted that with regard to the Industrial Visit to Seimans in Trondheim reliability and quality issues were discussed, there were 3 working groups participating from the company. The company had been contacted in advance to ascertain their requirements.

It was felt that we could improve industrial visits, so with this in mind an Industrial Visit Scheme was drawn up, this involved discussion and recommendations made in 2 papers, including quality improvement and innovation methods both before and follow up after the visit. Both of these papers are available in CD format (from the Barcelona conference). It was agreed that a report of these two papers would be extremely useful to use for the template for industrial visits.

The core group for WP4 are working together well and there has been good interaction with other societies outside of ENBIS/pro-ENBIS

Collaborative Papers further issues

The 6 papers written are linked by a common theme. The 6th paper is under construction and will be published by Springer Verlag. There will also be a 7th paper that will be submitted to the Journal of Quality & Reliability Engineering

Paper 1 extended the quality movement to develop channels between the 2 theories, in real life they are all linked. The issues raised are difficult and needs research but it is envisaged that this discussion will raise a framework for those in the network to raise the issue and can be worked on in the future under the 6th Framework.


It was reiterated that the philosophy behind what we are doing "stochastics for quality community" should mimic the approach adopted by the medical community,

The group were advised a good article had been published in the popular press in Germany submitted by Rainer Gob. It was agreed this was exactly the type of thing that was required, Meropi agreed that she had software that could translate into English and will send to Rainer unfiltered, who would then edit and send to the group.

Feedback from the Project Officer

It was re-iterated that it is to be made clear what recommendations/guidance the consortium has produced to improve the choice, preparation and realisation of industrial visits. This harmonised approach is to be displayed on the web and implemented in future industrial visits

Maria was asked if she knew the members of Pro-ENBIS before this project. Maria responded that she only knew Rainer before. All of the others she knew only through Pro-Enbis – Maria has found working in the group to be a marvellous experience. There was a quick search around the attendees to ascertain other networks members were involved in, of the group Maria had been involved in a network a long time ago.

Henry was currently involved in thematic network TNEE and University of Newcastle are currently involved in a 5th Framework Thematic Network entitled Surge Net. Eurandom advised the group that they are currently into contract negotiations in a network of excellence (PASCAL).

For others in the group it is the first time they have been involved.

Work Package 5: Discovering European Resources and Expertise

Work Package Leader: University of Newcastle

Milestone M5.3 stipulated that a database of learning materials would be established by month 30. It was agreed this would incorporate Case Study Course Material and Distance Learning Materials. The aim would be to provide a service so members of ENBIS and Pro-ENBIS can access materials via the web site. It was suggested that incorporated into this could be the listing currently available on the ENBIS web site as part of working group on Statistical Consulting. It was agreed that we need a link to this. It was further agreed that we would urgently put a link onto the web from the ENBIS web site to the Pro-ENBIS. Jereon de Mast would be contacted to arrange this. The entire group was invited to have a look at the site and to provide the Enbis web master with their material to add. In addition to this it was noted that ENBIS member Roland Caulcutt has teaching material and could be contacted.


Work Package 6: Drafting & Initiating Further Activity

Work Package Leader: University of Newcastle

Milestone M6.3 stipulated that a list of potential partners for a European Measurement Audit Programme would be drawn up by Month 24. It was agreed drafting a list of partners who may be interested in a measurement audit system would start this process. The Work Package leaders would start off the process by looking at the original Business to Business project activity that has already taken place. It was noted that Froydis, Maria, Henry, Oystein, Anne de Frenne, Xavier, Rainer, Pedro and John Tyssedal also carry out measurement on subjective input e.g. taste and smell.

Henry is also currently carrying out a feasibility study and can help out with this. We need to refer to the Guidelines for uncertainty in measurement (GUM) areas of interest include; decision analysis, medical diagnosis, software sensors, mechanical & chemical processes. It was agreed that Shirley Coleman would send the background and the previous material available at Newcastle. Henry will draft a précis.


Work Package 7: Management Statistics

Work Package Leaders: Ronald Does (IBIS UvA) & Irena Ograjensek (Uni of Ljubljana)

Workshops/Seminars/Industrial Visits/Papers/Journals

See Pro-Enbis web site for details

Comments from Work Package Leader

Ronald Does advised the group that a research topic is also available on the project web site. The central question is "what is the contribution of statistics to management processes in organisations" authors in both ENBIS and Pro-Enbis are encouraged to contribute to the viewpoints proffered. It is anticipated that this area of discussion would be explored during the rest of the project. It was reiterated that the members of the group share one common vision; Six- sigma is being implemented within Europe, impact of statistics in industry that has never happened before to improve costs, improve delivery times, it is a new philosophy.

Feedback from the Project Officer

Meropi asked if the work package tried to involve industry as much as possible. The response of the group was that – yes that we have utilised invited experts from outside of the network to deliver workshops. We also have members of industry within the project group (as part of the Steering Committee) although it was noted that it was often difficult for industrial members to attend the meetings. We do try hard to get the practitioners involved as much as possible.

There is a meeting this month (Oct 2003) of The Italian Statistical Society – the group is unique in the way that the presenters are not only pro-ENBIS members but also people from industry who are invited to explain the needs and problems vis a vis….. This new format for the technical session/seminars/ workshops organised in the context of the project was welcomed.


Work Package 8: Network Management

Work Package Leader: University of Newcastle

Report on the State of the Art in Industrial Statistics – Wiley want to publish this, it reflects on the importance of what we are doing the deadline for this is December 2004 at the end of the project.

The guidelines for chapters will be circulated to the group. Further discussion would take place at the next project meeting to be held in Ljubljana in April 2004.

Project Finance


Transfer of budget between partners:

Matforsk – The WP1 leader Henry Wynn (LSE) wished to transfer up to 20% of his personnel budget to personnel budget of Matforsk, to allow for the development and delivery of a workshop to be held in Norway in May 2004. The workshop would be a deliverable for this work package and promised to be an excellent event. Meropi Paneli informed the consortium that no formal prior agreement required from the Commission for transfer of budget up to that ceiling except for cost categories (IPR, Other specific costs, travel and subsistence (outside EU), subcontract (100.000EUR or third country). In any case the Commission should be informed. The member would write a short paragraph detailing the rationale for the workshop and the estimated budget required. This would be sent to the Co-ordinator in the first instance.

Transfer of budget between partner and member:

WP2 it would need to be clarified if a transfer of budget could be given between a partner and a member to deliver a workshop. It was reiterated that Members only get travel and subsistence. Meropi would check the general conditions. It was agreed that the WP Leader would write to the commission and set out the detail of the rationale for transfer and copy to the Co-ordinator in the first instance.

Transfer of budget across budget headings:

Budgets can be vired across budget headings up to 20% however there is the risk of any resulting overspend may not be able to be recovered at the end of the project

The Scientific Officer advised the group that each should use their own budget for travel.

Cost Statements (Year 1)

The group was advised that a justification document had been sent by the Co-ordinator & Research Dept of the UNEW. In which details of justification for project expenditure was laid out. The group was advised by the Project officer to wait until each member submitted the Year 2 Cost Statements and to complete the adjustment of costs section. Any deductions made under the year 1 cost statements would be considered then.

The meeting was adjourned and would recommence the following morning.