Message from Derek K Jones, Ph.D.
Annual Meeting Program Committee Chair

Measure what can be measured, and make measurable what cannot be measured.”
Galileo Galilei

What an inspiring comment from Galileo, arguably one of the most famous Italian scientists of all time.  It epitomizes the drive of our Society: To push the limits of what we can measure with magnetic resonance, for the benefit of all mankind.  

Right, that’s the grandiose, historical, self-congratulatory perspective that you were expecting…

"And now for something completely different"
Monty Python

I can't tell you how excited I will be to see you all in Milan for the Joint Annual Meeting ISMRM-ESMRMB, 10-16 May 2014. The theme of meeting has a nod towards our host city, ‘Fashioning MR to Improve Global Healthcare’.  I really hope you will enjoy the costume changes that we’ve made to our meeting.

Kicking us off at the start of the week, and setting the trend for a great collection of named lectures, Tom Grist will  tell us how new MR fashions are created with the Mansfield Lecture “Innovation in MRI: Seize the First Moment”. Following him down the catwalk on Wednesday will be Karla Miller, with the NIBIB New Horizons Lecture on an emerging trend: “MRI in an era of multi-scale neuroscience: Where do we go from here?” and on Thursday, from the Paris MR fashion house Neurospin, top MR Designer Denis Le Bihan will be telling us about the classic outfit that is in everyone’s wardrobe: diffusion MRI, with the Lauterbur Lecture on “Probing a microscopic world at a macroscopic scale: the magic of diffusion MRI”. 

Some fashions never catch on, of course, and we’ll be closing the meeting with an interactive round-table plenary session on ‘Il Bamboccioni’ – MR Trends that haven’t yet made it into the mainstream fashion of the MR clinic.   Come ready to voice your opinions!  This is but one of a thrilling collection of plenaries, with something for everyone:  “When MR Became the Gold Standard”, “Magnet Technology: Where We Came From, Where We Are, Where We Are Going To”, “Obesity and MR”, and “Perfusion in the Brain, Heart & Body”.  All of this perfectly paired with a superb educational programme carefully designed with style and panache by Christine Chung and her AMPC team. 

Fear not, though, some of your favourite old classics are still hanging in there. Look out for these wardrobe staples:

  - Perplexing review of your abstracts

  - Unearthly start times for weekday 'sunrise' courses

- Long lines for food at the opening and closing receptions

  - No free coffee

And new for the Spring 2014 season, look out for:

Newbie Reception:  Is this going to be your first time at the ISMRM?  Not only will you get your very own ribbon, (so that everyone can welcome you into the fold through the ancient initiation rite of trying to read your name badge without looking down), but we're laying on a special welcome reception for first-time registrants, with a chance to meet your mentor for the week ahead.    You’ll get to meet fellow 'newbies' and senior members from your field from day one, and start networking!

Up Close and Personal Sessions:  If you're a trainee, and starting out in MR research, there's nothing more beneficial than sitting down with a real expert (perhaps the author of the papers you have been studying) and asking all those burning questions.  Each trainee will get the chance to spend 1 hour in a small class-room setting (with up to 7 others) with a leader in their field. This is an invaluable opportunity not to be missed!

Women in MR Forum Evening Event:   Following the success of the inaugural Women in MR Forum at the 21st Annual Meeting in Salt Lake City, we will be holding a ticketed evening buffet reception for our female clinical and basic scientists, providing the perfect opportunity to network and discuss key issues related to women working in MR. 

30 Years of Magnetic Resonance in Medicine:  Yep, our very own journal, Magnetic Resonance in Medicine, is 30 years old.  Assisted by you, the membership, we will have identified the 30 most influential MRM papers that have helped to shape our field.  These will be celebrated at a special ticketed (first come, first served) event at the annual meeting. Come and meet the authors and chat with them, to find out how they got their idea, and what has happened since.  

PowerPosters:   This year, we’ll be trialling a new session format whereby during each scheduled oral session, 15 of the best abstracts in each subject area will be given a 2 minute 'poster pitch' in our purpose built 'Power Poster Theatre', followed by a 1 hour poster presentation on big plasma screens.  The idea is to maximize the chances to see great work - and to have ample time (rather than the usual 3 minutes) to discuss the details with the authors.

The Great Italian Art and Food Challenge:  Feeling creative? Then why not enter our competition?  In deference to our host country, to celebrate art and the food of Italy, our challenge to you is to create either a piece of artwork generated from MR data, or to create the best possible picture of a plate of Italian food, using MR data (either assembling data to resemble food, or actually image the food itself). We don’t want to be too prescriptive here, as we’ll stifle your creativity. Surprise us and inspire us with your creations.  Entries will be displayed in the MiCo Convention Centre for the duration of the meeting. More details to follow shortly (keep checking the website!)

The Italian Touch:  We are absolutely indebted to Alberto Bizzi and the rest of his Local Organizing Committee, for pulling out all the stops to make the meeting happen in Milan. With their help, there’ll be little touches / surprises throughout the meeting, culminating with a fantastic closing reception.  Alberto and the team…. Grazie!

So – I hope you are looking forward to it as much as I am! And if you enjoy it, then please take a moment to search out two teams of people: (1) The Annual Meeting Programme Committee (AMPC), who have been working hard at various points throughout the year to ensure the content of the program is as great as it can be; and (2) the ISMRM Central Office: The meeting just wouldn’t happen without them. Until you get involved in the organizing of the meeting, you have no idea how much these wonderful people do for us….and it is all behind the scenes. So, PLEASE… stop by and just say ‘Thank You!’.

That’s it from me. Pack your Euros, phrasebooks and sunshades, and I’ll see you in Milano.

Diolch Yn Fawr!

Derek K. Jones
Chair, Annual Meeting Program Committee


The International Society for Magnetic Resonance in Medicine is accredited by the Accreditation Council for
Continuing Medical Education to provide continuing medical education for physicians.