Meeting in Brussels

Day 1

Monday, February 11, 2002.

See also: minutes of day 2.

Attendees

Dave Stewardson (Chair) Co-ordinator
Christine Burdon Co-ordinator
Lesley Fairbairn Co-ordinator
Daniele Romano (Member)
Soren Bowadt (Project Officer)
Meropi Paneli (Project Officer)
Oyvind Langsrud (Principal Contractor)
Tony Greenfield (Principal Contractor)
Henry Wynn (Principal Contractor)
Irene Ogragensek (Principal Contractor)
Maria Ramalhoto (Principal Contractors)
Xavier Tort Martorell (Principal Contractor)
Ronald Does (Principal Contractor)

Apologies were received from: Oystein Evandt

Welcomes and Introductions

Dave Stewardson as Chair welcomed all for attending the meeting and outlined the agenda. The agenda for the administrative session would outline the requirements of the project, our obligations and the requirements of the European Commission and an overview of the work packages.

The agenda for Day 2 would cover the technical aspects of the project and all contractors and members had been requested to attend.

It was AGREED that a list of all Principal contractors and members along with their contact details would be compiled and circulated to the group. (Each attendee was distributed a list at the technical session) the details would be posted onto the Pro-Enbis web page.

Outline of the Project

Dave Stewardson gave a power point presentation giving a brief history of the network and an outline of the project.

Introductions

The group were invited to give a brief introduction of themselves, their institution and the areas of work undertaken

Dave Stewardson - Industrial Statistics Research Unit at the University of Newcastle upon Tyne
Project Coordinators
d.j.stewardson@ncl.ac.uk
www.ncl.ac.uk/isru
A background to the history of the unit, the types of work undertaken, typical projects and recent bids were presented to the group (see attachment)
Framalhoto@math.ist.utl.pt
The Technical University incorporated all types of under graduate and postgraduate Engineering but had also introduced Management and Architecture to give an engineering orientation to these fields. The university had experience of participation in European projects (e.g. Erasmus since 1978) and successful 5th Framework projects. Maria noted that Research Centres has been set up to achieve the cross disciplinary function, to facilitate discussion and collaboration between subject areas.

Xavier Tort Martorell - UPC Technical University Catalunya
Xavier.tort@upc.es
Barcelona is a large university with over 26 thousand students, with 3540 within the Statistics Department. The unit carries out consultancy work, assistance to companies for example six sigma applications.

Ronald Does - IBIS University of Amsterdam, Department of Mathematics
Rjmmdoes@science.uva.nl
The Institute for Business and Industrial Statistics, an independent consultancy firm with a commercial remit was established in 1994. Initially using SPC and now Six Sigma and Business improvement and other services to industry. The Institute had 3 Professors, 4 senior consultants. Companies worked with include those in the service sector as Achmea (pensions)

Tony Greenfield - Greenfield Consultants
Tony@grnfld.demon.co.uk
Tony is an independent consultant and works in collaboration with other consultants to reach out to companies that don’t have much experience in statistical methods, and give them access to usable software. He also delivers short courses at universities both within the UK and overseas.

Daniele Romano - University of Cagliari (UNICA) Department of Mechanical Engineering
Romano@dimeca.unica.it
Based within the Department of Mechanical Engineering, Deniele advised the group that the institution was planning to increase numbers involved in statistical applications. New to European projects, but have currently a 5th Framework Programme in Robust Design Main interests lie in Quality Improvement, Experimental Design and also trying to link business and statistics, production of software and DOE

Oyvind Langsrud - Matforsk, Norwegian Food Research Institute
Oyvind.langsrud@matforsk.no
To increase competition in food industry and research and development focusing on food quality. There are 160 staff. Funding for the institute is made up from both industry/commercial and research.

Irena Ograngensek - Ljubljana Slovenia
Irena.ograjensek@Uni-Lj.si
http://www.ef.uni-lj.si
Based within the Faculty of Economics, the University established a statistical institute last year. Main areas of work are in Introducing SPC and data mining would like to introduce to an undergraduate level. Distance learning projects, statistical quality improvement in the service industry. They work with a large number of major Slovenian companies.

Henry Wynn - University of Warwick
h.p.wynn@warwick.ac.uk
www.warwick.ac.uk
1/3 externally funded 2/3-research projects direct funding including National Traffic Service, large percentage of risk projects.

A di Bucchianico - Eurandom
a.d.bucchianico@tm.tue.nl
Unfortunately Alessandrio could not attend the meeting; Henry Wynn spoke on their behalf. It was noted that Eurandom have close links all over Europe, Henry’s role includes outreach to industry, stochastic networks, biology micro array analysis, and integrity and reliability extension of supply chain management.

Oystein Evandt - IMPRO
Oystein.evandt@c2i.net
Unfortunately Oystein could not attend the meeting, he had previously submitted a paper to the Co-ordinator outlining his commitment to Work Package 4, Reliability, Safety and Quality Improvement. He noted that from his area of expertise, safety and reliability analysis will be the main tools for achieving quality improvement in relation to the work in question. Improvement of pipeline production concentrating upon improvement of pipeline production. It was noted that he would be attending the future meetings and would have a great involvement with the project.

The Scientific Officers for the Project introduced themselves to the group.

Soren Bowadt Scientific Officer Engineering Measurement and Testing, European Commission
Soren had overall responsibility for virtual institutes within the 5th Framework, linking up with small industries. He has overall responsibility for a large number of projects. It may be decided that Meropi will take over responsibility for this project.

Meropi Paneli
Scientific Officer, new to the role, She advised the group that her background as an analytical chemist, recently employed in Paris at OCD in such areas as risk assessment.

Overview of Pro-Enbis

Christine Burdon addressed the group and gave a power-point presentation giving a general outline of the project and its aims and objectives, (power-point presentation attached).

During the presentation the following additional points were noted. An aspect of the project includes the rapid dissemination of information and findings, and how to get expertise into companies, this would be achieved by the following methods; setting up a web page, meetings, workshops, progress reports, technical reports, conference & journal papers, industrial visits and seminars.

The Thematic Network will not directly fund the labour costs, can be utilised as a platform for accessing further funding, intention to develop partnerships.

A further aim of the project will be two-way agreements with companies, we can learn from the companies too.

To forge collaborative agreements with other institutions and other disciplines for example Institute of Bio Mathematics (John Ocherton) Spelling? To forge links with Fraun Hoffer Institute (also a member of Surge Net Thematic Network)

Approach

To help European Industry to apply up to date methods of process improvement. Member would need to prepare explanatory materials for presentation, Maria questioned would funding be available for this? Soren agreed to outline this later in the as all expenditure would need to be clearly identified.

Outcomes

Confidentiality and reporting of outcomes were discussed. Outputs can be reported for example by taking out the company name, we could also fictionalise the companies or we could transform names and the data slightly, It was understood that what you could report depended very much on the company concerned, the key is implementation and application.

Henry noted that industry increasingly needed statistics to comply with regulatory requirements; our job would be to push on the process of implementing the statistical tools in industry. It was further noted that the design of statistical software for use within the company was growing fast. The bottom line benefits and cost savings can be enormous, Six Sigma can result in large cost savings, and the USA is pushing Six Sigma. It was noted that often, small companies did not have the money to spend; assistance give to companies was often bespoke, very tailored to the company’s specific needs.

Special Work Item

Funding is available to invite a named expert (Soren Bisgaard) from outside of Europe. Funding was also available for the funding of new members to expand the network into new areas for example into new subject areas and Eastern Europe. It was agreed this would also be discussed at tomorrow’s meeting with the members.

Added Value and SME Participation

The Coordinator would chair a Steering Committee; they would have 1 meeting per year and will be steered by industrial members. This would include current non-Pro Enbis members. The Committee would review progress and revise plans for the future development and direction of the project. We would listen to industry and draw influence from them.

Brief History of the Network

See Power - Point presentation in which Dave Stewardson detailed the background of the history behind ENBIS and Pro-Enbis (essentially the PROmotion of ENBIS) He stressed that the we must achieve the objectives set out in the contract with the European Commission and could draw upon the expertise of ENBIS which currently has 150 industrial members.

Requirements from the Commission (administration, reporting scheme, allowable costs)

Soren Bowadt the Scientific Officer for the Project gave a presentation as to the requirements of the Commission (details are attached)

It was noted that the contract number is G6RT -CT-2001-05059 and must be quoted on all correspondence. The start date of the project is the 1st January 2002. The total allowable costs are 792,979 euros and advance of 317,190 euros would be given before the end of month 2. Payments would be then made each year according to justifications. 15% retention would be made until the approval of the final reports. Periodic and final reports shall cover successive periods of 12 months from the commencement date. Amendments to the project can only be carried out with the written agreement of the Scientific Officer. If an extension of the project were required then this would need to be advised 3 months before the official end date. Participants were to be aware that as we are nearing the end of the 5th Framework then it was important to adhere to deadlines.

University of Newcastle and the European Commission would carry out project administration and co-ordination. All communications would go through the University of Newcastle. The Co-ordinators would be responsible for reviewing the resources and ensuring a consistency between costs and payments. The workpackage leaders would be responsible for the coordination of the work packages.

Progress reports and monitoring - Soren noted that the 3 important meetings are the Kick off meeting where the aims and objectives of the project are laid out, the Mid-Term meeting (a milestone to check where we are with the project, do significant changes need to be made to the delivery of the project) and the Final meeting to be held within 2 months of the end of the project (venue to be convenient location) It was AGREED to contact the Scientific Officer to see where is most appropriate venue.

Tony Greenfield asked if we could deal directly with the press, that is ok but bear in mind that the EC is political organisation therefore press releases would need to go through the EC Hierarchy.

Periodic Reports

Management Reports Progress Reports Cost Statements

Management Report to be a summary 2- 4 pages giving a progress report in terms of the management of the project (deadline period end +1month)

Progress Reports - Not to be too extensive with too much technical detail ! (deadline period end +2months)

Cost Statements - to be completed using cost statement form, Soren has a word version of this, which he AGREED to circulate via the Co-ordinator.

It was stressed that the Mid Term Reports are important strategic reports. The final Report was to include a Technical Implementation Plan.

It was noted that payments could only be made upon receipt and approval of the corresponding cost statements (allowable costs minus payments already made) and progress reports, so it is essential that they are ALL submitted in time Failure to do so could result in payments being delayed by 4 months. The initial cost statement prepared by the Principal Contractors would need to be forwarded to the Coordinator in good time (By the end of November) the Coordinator would then prepare a consolidated cost statement to send to the EC for approval.

Payment Timing - Soren outlined that negative cash flow will result as the EC try to recover its advance. The advice was to spend money evenly as you go through the project, this was particularly important to the contractors from small companies (consultants)

Cost Statements

to be submitted before the 15th January 2003/2004/2005 2 original documents to be signed by the Technical Manager and Financial Officer. Currency rate will be fixed as day 1 of month 13 (due to fluctuation in exchange rates) For all costs claimed receipts and invoices must be kept at your institution. Details of all travel (where and why) must be stipulated on the cost form for submission. Please use part E of Annex ii of cost forms. Further points
- Keep signed time sheets (all to keep a record) all projects are randomly subject to audit.
- Partners are contractually obligated
- Changes to the project to be advised, there is however a relatively high level of independence (roughly 20%) virement is allowed between cost categories and between partners and members.
- 20 % overheads can be utilised for personnel, or technical staff and social changes pensions etc… PLEASE NOTE these funds CANNOT be used for RESEARCH.
- To be aware of the distinction between dissemination and marketing. Dissemination i.e. what you do when you go out in the network- workshops etc…
- Consumables and Computing - can only be used for the project, a track of use would need to be made.
- Travel - Prior approval for travel outside Europe (or Associated States) is requested. Applications to be made to the commission 1 month prior to intended travel.
- Specific Payment costs - for conference or seminar fees

Soren was thanked for his presentation.

Web Page -What do we want from a web page?

Action lists (who what when)
Forum for discussion
Frequently asked questions (in relation to eligible and ineligible expenditure)
Minutes (with action points) to be password protected
Email pointers to the web page (informed as when and where new information is added)
Contact, email addresses and link to the institutions web page of the entire group.
Project deliverables, reports and papers (CD drive)
Public section to be linked to the ENBIS web page
Private Section to be pass word protected.

Note to use common editorial style (branding) same type face and layout. It was AGREED that Tony Greenfield would advise.

Numbering of documents, referencing system to be put in place.

Newsletter

Ronald Does noted that the ENBIS web page only cost 250 euros per year.

Communications

It was proposed and AGREED that if an urgent response was required the sender to note the text in red. If not a reasonable response time would be 1 week.

Software Versions-
Spreadsheets would be in Excel (Latec mathematical for formulae) save as PDF or html. Or rich text format.
Use Word 2000 (or earlier)
Power-point
SAS/Minitab/SPSS to be save as an Excel file
Archive of messages
Let us know if there will be a delay in responding for whatever reason. Either leave someone else in charge or at least leave an out of the office message.

Deliverables

Work package Leaders - responsible for what constitutes materials for seminars, protocol for papers, aims and objectives of visits, target packages

Materials for Seminars
Training based
Interactive
Along side conference
Hold several together
Alongside other meetings

Workshops
Eurandom proposed as a venue, they have expertise and experience in running workshops and can facilitate
Eurandom could hold 1 workshop per year in conjunction with others.
Matforsk could also hold workshops too.

It was AGREED that Eurandom and Matforsk would hold workshops.
It was agreed that workshops would need to be accessible so the venues would need to be spread out.

Protocol for Papers

We are obliged to submit papers to journals and at conferences, question of how do we distinguish Pro Enbis work from other work? It was suggested that we collaborate with other authors from the network.

The first stage could be to present a paper at a workshop, to acknowledge that the ‘paper was first presented at the Pro-ENBIS workshop for …’ Case studies to be also written up. The whole idea is to get collaborative work; this is demonstrable by joint papers.

It was AGREED that there would be at least 1 author represented from 2 members of the network on each submitted paper.

It was reiterated that the Work Leaders were responsible for the deliverable outcomes. It was suggested that always as a recurrent theme on the web page to have an item on who is writing what (or not!)

Visits

It was AGREED to hold ‘Taster Sessions’ at companies
To present at conferences
To hold sessions for management in the benefits of applying statistical techniques.

Meetings

It was AGREED the following meetings would be held in the following venues:

Month 5: Portugal, Lisbon to be arranged by Maria Ramalhoto, IST
Month 9: Rimini, Italy, ENBIS and Steering Committee
Month 13: Eurandom The Netherlands
Month 18: Barcelona ENBIS and Steering Committee, Xavier Tort Martorell
Month 22: Matforsk hosts to workshop on DOE
Month 26: Ljubjuana, Irena Ograjensek
Month 30: Copenhagen (subsequently agreed) ENBIS and Steering Committee
Month 34: Newcastle Final Meeting.

It was further suggested to hold workshops in Germany, it was AGREED that Ulrike Groemping would be contacted.

New Members

Criteria - New Skills or new nation state not already represented in the current membership so far. There is currently funding for 6-8 new members. There could be more if they joined later due to costs ratio. It was further suggested that we could have new members but they would need to pay for themselves.

Applications had been received from KPA Ltd, Israel, Associate State. And the Database Management Company Germany,

It was AGREED to invite KPA Ltd. Contact would be Ron Kennet, CEO.
It was AGREED to invite Database Management Company, contact would be Andrea Alermeyer-Stubbe.
It was AGREED that we should actively pursue a French representative; it further AGREED that Henry Wynn would contact Renault to discuss possible membership.

Brief Overview of Work packages - WP1 - WP8

A copy of the work plan and the outline of the various work packages are detailed as per attachment.

WP.1 Design of Experiments Work Package Leader: University of Warwick Henry Wynn talked to the above work package. Experimental design is a vital area; Henry wished to highlight a number of important areas. There was particular enthusiasm for workshops, to focus activities and to as an incubator for techniques. It was hoped that a workshop on experimental design could be held soon. Developments world wide a leading area was perhaps process design in both processes and products; there is also the newer area of computer experience on simulators for example in engine design. ETT who are a member have coordination of a virtual network. Simulation using CADCAM looking at both optimal and classical was another area of possible development. Other areas could be non-linear models (experimental design), non-parametric regression, multi variate outputs and algebraic methods in experimental design.

It would be stressed that this is not research but money is there to facilitate. There will be some areas of communality.

Discussion followed as to how the workshops would be structured. To be aimed both at fellow academics and for industrialists and also to be multi disciplinary. Participants would not need to pay a fee but would need to cover their own costs. It was AGREED that heads of industry would be contacted to get them involved.

It was further AGREED that there would need to be more than 1 type of workshop multifaceted, aimed at different levels and a different audience, some technical and some appreciation sessions, we need to contact the decision makers.

It was AGREED that the Work package Leaders will put together a taster session for heads of industry/decision makers.

WP2 Data Mining/Warehousing Work Package Leader: Eurandom

Henry spoke for Eurandom. Structural and causal explanation for large data sets for which modelling may not have been done. As it has developed it has drawn in from statistics MVA, Principal Component analysis, tree regression etc…

There is a job to be done in clarification of the subject area and groundwork in such areas as Bayesian Methods in data mining (a current fashionable area, causal data sets) Dynamic Data Management (real time data management almost) Handling dynamic data sets.

It was noted that the Data Mining Group must therefore work in close collaboration with the Process Control Group.

WP3 General Statistical Modelling, Process Modelling and Control Work Package Leaders: Greenfield Consultants & UPC

Tony Greenfield addressed the group.

There are real issues on how processes are monitored and recorded and the subsequent results. This package will address both the basic level from the bottom up and go back to the basics but will also be aimed at the decision makers. In ordinary industry they need bringing up to date with an evidence based engineering approach, how to improve products from evidence. What is the best way to get evidence? - Recording via SPC to get them to collect and record data and organise better data collection. “ Redesign the Message”

WP4 Reliability, Safety and Quality Improvement Work package Leaders: IST & IMPRO

Oystein had previously sent his apologies and had forwarded a paper regarding his input to the Project Co-ordinator. Oystein wished to concentrate on the area of quality in particular in relation to his field of expertise in pipeline manufacturing.

Maria Ramalhoto addressed the group. Safety, risk assessment, quality, reliability maintenance management achieved through a trans-disciplinary approach. The vision into action demands discussion and cooperative approach and also requires feedback. Pro-Enbis is the European movement to make this come about. What can we offer to this project? Via papers and other collaborative work with a trans-disciplinary approach to create some kind of ‘Stochastics for Quality Movement’ an ‘Extended Quality Management’ working group. What do we hope to gain from being involved? Recognising and measuring against standard of current knowledge and to identify and study it’s research priorities, for example SPC, Quality Engineering Reliability and Maintenance.

To implement a library of case based reasoning for example problems that a manager of some selected industry or business is faced with. To analyse what is done in practice then benchmarking so we can discover how to do it a better way.

The group AGREED this was an excellent proposal.

It was envisaged that the network would grow together as a whole (in tandem) and to diversify into all the areas that were needed, all communications avenues would be open to facilitate collaboration.

WP5 Discovering European Resources and Expertise Work Package Leaders: ISRU & Matforsk.

Deliverables for this package include the compilation of a list of journals and links to other industrial statistical groups. To trawl the Internet for example for other statistical groups to find the statistical resources that is already available in the European Community. To develop a European databases of relevant teaching resources and organising a pan European audit of statistical expertise.

This would include now the cased based reasoning material - it was AGREED that Maria would work with all on this to do it together.

It was reiterated that the packages are not at all closed and all were free to join and collaborate as they wished.

WP6 Drafting and Initiating Further Activity Work Package Leader: ISRU

It was reiterated that this work package was not aimed at drafting research proposals but to move the research agenda forward to facilitate the research agenda the EC are proposing, It was AGREED that we would have a focused team on this, Henry Wynn was keen to be involved with this, his input would be welcomed. Information would be quickly pooled and a trans-disciplinary approach would be essential. Further areas of activity were suggested including: Business-to-Business monitoring could be extremely beneficial to European businesses.

European Measurement Audit Programme: standardisation of measurement.

European Training Network to help young graduates.

There was a note of caution from the Scientific Officer. This package had the remit to cede activities but NOT conduct these activities. The EC could not be seen to fund activities that then lead/assist in funding further projects (anti-competitiveness)

WP7 Management Statistics Work Package Leaders: IBIS & Ljubljana

Ronald Does addressed the group An aim of this work package is to further the use of statistics in strategic planning. Ronald noted that the best way forward would need to be clarified. How can you make decisions from collected data? To introduce Process Investigation as the best way to monitor business. Balanced Score Card. To expose managers to statistical reasoning so they can make the right decisions, exposing statistical methods to the service sectors, production, finance and human resources. It was noted that operations have always had a long history of process improvement whereas the service sector may not. It was noted that this would be fleshed out before the meeting to be held in May 2002.

Indicators of Success KPI’s would be an integral part of WP7. It was proposed that a workshop on KPI’s be held.

WP8 Network Management Work Package Leaders ISRU

Package dedicated to the management of the network to set up and maintain a web page, to contact standardisation bodies, reporting and preparing published material. A specific request from the EC was to produce a Report on the State of the Art in Measurement, Business and Industrial Statistics. This report will draw everything together.

Thanks were given to all for their attendance, it was agreed that much positive input and the prospect of much collaborative work was extremely encouraging. The Scientific Officers were thanked for their attendance; they in turn wished the project much success.

See also: minutes of day 2.