On 19 and 20 November the CLARIN ERIC General Assembly had its annual meeting in Copenhagen. The meeting counted 31 participants from 17 countries (including the CLARIN ERIC Board of Directors), several more than last year. Indeed, CLARIN ERIC is growing quickly: in 2015, Greece, Slovenia and Italy have joined, Norway has become a full member, and the UK an observer. Additionally, at the beginning of this year’s GA meeting, the Assembly welcomed Finland as the 17th full member.
The Assembly discussed the state of, and plans for, the technical and knowledge-sharing infrastructure, the user involvement, and the situation of funding in the member countries as well as the financial plan for next year and the perspectives coming five years. The current strategy plan, and the progress made according to it over the last year, have been reviewed. All reports and plans presented by the Board of Directors have been approved without any objections by the GA.
Overall, the delegates agreed that the progress of CLARIN is impressive, and that it is in a good shape to meet the challenges of the coming years, when CLARIN according to the ESFRI roadmap leaves the construction phase and enters the utilisation phase, although in several countries the implementation of CLARIN continues. After all, “we are not building one large factory, but rather a village”, according to a comparison by the honoured guest Steven Krauwer, until recently executive director of CLARIN.
The General Assembly thanked the Board of Directors and all National Coordinators and other contributors for their hard work, and in particular the Executive Director Franciska de Jong who took over the steering of CLARIN in very (positively) dynamic but also crucial times.