Gaia Research for European Astronomy Training (GREAT)


The ESA Gaia Science Team and the Gaia Data Processing and Analysis Consortium are working with others in the community to build the European science capacity to successfully exploit the upcoming ESA Gaia cornerstone mission.

GREAT is the programme which will bring together relevant scientific expertise by promoting topical workshops, training events, exchange visits, conferences and so forth with the aim of addressing the major scientific issues that the Gaia satellite will impact upon. GREAT will help build the capacity of the science community in the exploitation of Gaia data.

The GREAT initiative is now enabled through our European Science Foundation (ESF) research networking programme which runs from Feb 2010 to Feb 2015. This network will fund community training events, workshops and major conferences, proceedings, grants for short and exchange visits, and outreach material. It will help build essential collaborative scientific cooperation across Europe and the wider world in turn delivering major advances in science around the main objectives of Gaia. Over 550 researchers in some 90 groups from 17 European countries and the European Space Agency (ESA), and covering all the science areas covered by Gaia have committed to participating in this network.

In addition a proposal (GREAT-ITN) was submitted to the EU Seventh Research Framework Programme (FP7) (call FP7-PEOPLE-2010-ITN) in order to support an Initial Training Network to provide training to a core of early stage researchers, able to participate in the development of the GREAT programme and future scientific exploitation of Gaia.


GREAT ESF Research Network Steering Committee
Name Institute Town Country
Dr. Nicholas Walton (Chair) University of Cambridge (Institute of Astronomy) Cambridge UNITED KINGDOM
Prof. Conny Aerts Katholieke Universiteit Leuven (Instituut voor Sterrenkunde) Leuven BELGIUM
Dr. Anthony Brown Leiden University Leiden NETHERLANDS
Dr. Josef Durech Charles University in Prague (The Institute of Astronomy) Prague CZECH REPUBLIC
Dr. Laurent Eyer Observatoire de Geneva Sauverny SWITZERLAND
Prof. Eva Grebel Zentrum fuer Astronomie der Universitaet Heidelberg Heidelberg GERMANY
Dr. Carme Jordi Universitat de Barcelona Barcelona SPAIN
Dr. Thomas Lebzelter University of Vienna (Department of Astronomy) Vienna AUSTRIA
Prof. Lennart Lindegren Lund Observatory Lund SWEDEN
Dr. Francois Mignard Observatoire de la Cote d'Azur Nice FRANCE
Dr. Andre Moitinho de Almeida University of Lisbon (Faculty of Sciences) Lisbon PORTUGAL
Dr. Karri Muinonen Department of Astronomy, University of Helsinki Helsinki FINLAND
Dr. Dimitri Pourbaix Universite Libre de Bruxelles (Institut d'Astronomie et d'Astrophysique) Bruxelles BELGIUM
Dr. Sofia Randich Osservatorio Astrofisico di Arcetri Firenze ITALY
Dr. Timo Prusti (Observer) European Space Agency (ESTEC) Noordwijk NETHERLANDS