Dear Colleagues,

We are delighted to share with you the European Brain Council (EBC) Annual Report for 2023.

It has been a monumental and jam-packed year for EBC. When reflecting on the highlights of the last 12 months, it was amazing to identify just how many there were.

As the main voice speaking on behalf of the brain community in Europe, representing scientists, clinicians, patients, industry — encompassing basic neuroscience, neurology, neurosurgery, and psychiatry — EBC certainly has a vast mandate. This wide breadth of focus areas was demonstrated in our variety of initiatives this year, from expanding global partnerships in brain research and building EBC’s international reach, taking a stand for animal research, raising the profile of brain health and the notions of brain capital and brain wealth, carrying out ongoing research and policy projects, all the way to ending the year as main partners within the Coordination and Support Action (CSA) BrainHealth, tasked by the European Commission to help pave the way towards a European Brain Health Partnership.

This year saw the successful continuation of key projects and flagship initiatives as well as the birth of new ones. 2023 immediately began with the launch of the Rethinking Alzheimer’s White Paper, followed soon after by EBC’s largest Brain Awareness Week event ever, focused on Global Partnerships in Brain Research. EBC kept a strong science advocacy profile this year, particularly linked to a recent European Citizens’ Initiative calling for the banning of all animal research in Europe, successfully organising meetings with scientists and 25 different Members of the European Parliament in one day. A “sold-out” event within the Science Summit at the 78th United Nations General Assembly, Fostering Global Partnerships in Brain Research in New York was followed by a bigger-than-ever third edition of the Brain Innovation Days, also featuring the launch of a fourth Rethinking project: Rethinking Schizophrenia. Our reach this year was immense: expanding from our European mandate to the global policy level as well as entering the national stage, with an event under the aegis of the Spanish Presidency of the Council of the European Union, “Our Brains, Our Future”, hosted in the Senate of Spain in Madrid.

It has truly been an outstanding year for EBC, and we certainly could not have done this without the continued support and collaboration of our Members and Partners, who not only fed directly into the content of all the initiatives of the year but also provided additional platforms, such as during their Annual Congresses, celebrations and events, as well as within internal meetings and networks. EBC continued strengthening its alignment and synergy with member societies and organisations, ensuring clear channels of communication and prioritising its role to represent the brain community in a coordinated and synergetic fashion. This brought the introduction of additional forms of communication on top of traditional newsletters, Brainy Insights and congress participation, namely with Secretariat Coordination Meetings and Letters from the President, meeting the needs of member organisations and key stakeholders to receive direct updates about EBC’s current priorities and the motives underpinning the vast array of activities we undertake.

We thank you all for your partnership and continued dedication to work, as a community, to gain recognition of the importance of brain health and that it continues to grow – for the sake of all Europeans – to be recognised as a priority at the political and societal level.

Kind regards,

Suzanne Dickson

EBC President

Frédéric Destrebecq

EBC Executive Director