Network and activities
We are made up of an active and diverse network of around 30,000 professionals who are committed to advancing microbiology for the benefit of society in the areas of health, energy, food, materials, and the environment. Set up in 1974, today we are a growing coalition of 52 Member Societies from 37 countries. Around half of those in our network are early career researchers, and others are business partners, scientists or campaigners.
We nurture this network with a variety of knowledge development and network-building activities:
- We publish five highly regarded journals – Articles from our journals are downloaded over 2.5 million times annually (2014). Together, they provide the revenues that support our charitable activities, enabling us to continue investing in science. We thank and acknowledge the hard work and dedication of every contributor to this process: the Editorial boards, Editors, Authors, Reviewers and our publisher, Oxford University Press (OUP) who together make this possible
- We hold a biennial scientific congress – This event is hosted in different European locations and hosts some of the biggest names in microbiology, attracting around 2,000 participants.
- We provide small research and meeting grants – We give out more than 250 grants worth over EUR 250,000 every year to members of our Member Societies
- We recognize excellence by giving out awards – Our first awards program was set up in 1999. We now have 5 awards programs running, including the Måkåla-Cassell Award with the American Society of Microbiology (ASM).
- We promote education and continuing professional development (CPD) – our Education Network runs sessions at our Congress and inspired the Professional Development section in FEMS Microbiology Letters.
Our main goals are to benefit microbiology in Europe and across the world through research, networking, education and outreach; and to help our Member Societies serve the microbiology community.
To achieve these we provide opportunities in networking, research and communication, as well as developing revenue streams to maintain and develop our charitable activities.
Our organizational direction 2015 – 2019 is summarized in our strategic framework.
Microorganisms play an essential role in humans, animals, plants, the environment and industrial processes, and impact significantly on health, the economy, food supply, and ecosystems. Scientific knowledge of microorganisms and their interactions in the biosphere is essential for informed decision and policy making, improved health and well-being, wealth generation and environmental quality and sustainability. FEMS’ vision is to coordinate and lead the acquisition of scientific knowledge and innovation in microbiology and to maximise communication of this knowledge, and its importance, to scientists, politicians, policy makers, industry and the general public.
FEMS aims at advancing microbiology in Europe and the neighbouring regions through grants, publication of internationally renowned journals, news items, congresses, teaching support, and additional initiatives that fulfil its Vision.
Geobacter bacteria are the only microorganisms known to produce conductive appendages or pili to electronically connect cells to extracellular electron acceptors such as iron oxide minerals and uranium. What mechanisms allow their biofilms to generate electrical currents and participate in metal redox transformations?