Trieste, Italy -- The 8th IAEA Nuclear Energy Management School (NEM) opened its doors on 15 July 2013 to 43 young nuclear professionals. Participants come from 28 countries, including those that plan to introduce nuclear power or other nuclear technology applications. The usual location of the annual session of the School is the Abdus Salam International Centre for Theoretical Physics (ICTP) in Trieste, Italy.
An interesting feature of this year's school is the increased representation of women. Typical to the industry, men were in a strong majority in the previous seven sessions. This year the number of qualified female applicants was high, which is reflected in the selection: 17 out of 43 participants are women.
The three-week programme will provide a critical overview of the nuclear field in the global context. The curriculum will first walk the participants through the main principles of nuclear power, such as long-term commitment, benefits for society, protection of people and the environment, security, non-proliferation, resource efficiency, and continuous improvement. The presentations will then focus on the components of a successful national nuclear power programme that is tuned to national needs, that finds its place in the national energy mix and which is clearly regulated with the help of nuclear law.
Another strong aspect of the NEM School is encouraging the bridge of knowledge exchange between leaders and managers of the global nuclear sector and the young professionals who will succeed them in the next decades. In this context, practices and techniques in financial, human resources, information and knowledge management in nuclear organizations are explained in depth. Lectures, video sessions, group activities and panel discussions, technical tours and case studies are aimed at ensuring a multidimensional vision and learning atmosphere for the participants.
"The IAEA Nuclear Energy Management School not only highlights the vital need for competent nuclear specialists worldwide, but also is a proven way forward," said IAEA Deputy Director General Alexander Bychkov, who heads the Department of Nuclear Energy, in his opening speech today.
Each year the school covers the essential elements of management in nuclear organizations but each school is unique due to special composition of lecturers and new elements introduced. This year's programme is designed to be more interactive than previous ones, leaving more room for debates. National presentations will focus on areas of expertise of each participant.
Lecturers selected for the school in Trieste are leading experts in the nuclear field and are from a globally diverse group. This year, 27 specialists from the IAEA and national nuclear organizations will serve as the faculty of the school.
The IAEA Nuclear Energy Management School was launched in 2010 in cooperation with ICTP. Since then, besides the annual sessions in Trieste, it was requested and conducted regionally in the UAE, Japan and the USA. The NEM School enables transfer of IAEA-specific knowledge to Member States, furthering their capacity-building efforts. The projected steady worldwide growth in the use of nuclear technologies - from electricity generation to medical, agricultural and industrial uses - points to the need for an expanded global cadre of nuclear professionals.
The NEM School focuses mainly on training young professionals with managerial potential from developing countries on the different aspects of the industry. Applicants from IAEA Member States with established nuclear power programmes or those that are planning or started establishing them must possess a degree in science, engineering, business or law, and must have a good understanding of nuclear fundamentals and experience in the government or the nuclear industry. Registration is free of charge for all attendees and on-line application for the 2014 NEM School will be opened in December 2013.