The SmartCow Kick-off Meeting (KoM) took place on 19th-21st February 2018 and it was hosted by INRA research centre of Auvergne Rhône-Alpes, France. A presentation and a visit of the research infrastructure “Herbipôle” was organised to give the opportunity to the attendees to see the “real life” of a cattle research infrastructure belonging to the SmartCow consortium.
The SmartCow kick-off meeting brought together more than 60 persons. The 14 partner organisations were represented as well as 10 stakeholder organisations and 2 members from the Scientific Advisory Board attended the meeting. It was the opportunity to officially launch the project in the presence of representatives of the European Commission, of the French Ministry of Research and of the scientific direction of INRA.
The whole meeting was held in plenary session in order to give opportunity to everybody to have a global view of the project and to take note of all aspects of the project. Each session or workshop was organised to have at least one third of the time devoted to discussion. Three main results were achieved at the end of kick-off meeting:
1) A concrete planning of the tasks to be conducted during the first year of the project and how to implement them;
2) A better identification of the interactions between tasks and WPs and how to implement them to foster synergies within the project;
3) First discussions with the stakeholders to make the project known and to integrate their needs; with members of the scientific advisory board to collect their advice on the project.
During the wrap-up session, the specific tasks to be achieved rapidly were summarized and the list of deliverables and milestones to be produced during the first year of the project was reminded.