Christmas message chair

Dear JPI MYBL community,

This has been a year none of us could have imagined earlier in our lives. While we have seen and witnessed the challenges of the COVID-19 pandemic, it has also given us some useful learning and insight. Here are a few, all very relevant to JPI MYBL’s work and mission:

  • The role of science: We have seen amazing progress in understanding of the virus and vaccine development, but the equally important understanding of behaviour and social mobility has not been highlighted.
  • The role of collaboration: The importance of international collaboration in research as well as in trade has been recognized, but also collaboration between disciplines and between sectors in society.
  • The role of demographic change: The situation of older persons has been central in all debate on how to mitigate effects of the pandemic. How different countries/regions/municipalities have handled the situation across generations will prompt evaluation and research for years to come.
  • The prevailing inequity: As always, disease and its consequences have hit differently in the diverse socioeconomic groups. This has been so obvious the past year that hopefully it will be an eye opener for decision makers and political leaders.

While most of us have worked from home, and are very busy with the extra burden the pandemic has laid on the (scientific) community, I am amazed to what extent the JPI MYBL community has continued working, almost fully according to plan. The joint call on Equality and Wellbeing across Generations and the fast track on Ageing and Technologies will have been finalized by the end of the year. The European Week of Active and Healthy Ageing was organized digitally together with the two ”sister programs” with high level participation. The MYBL secretariat in The Hague has done an amazing job in keeping all activities together, and all of us have participated actively on zoom and various media to pursue the work as good as we can.

So thank you all for this year, and hope to see you again physically in 2021!

Peter Allebeck