A management plan has been established, providing the structure for the management of the project. All relevant documents for the project have been distributed to all beneficiaries, including summaries of processes to be followed. Work package activities are coordinated through ongoing communication (telephone, email etc) on a daily basis between the different beneficiaries within the work package. Regular telephone conferences (every 1-2 months) are organized by the respectively work package leaders of the development/scientific workpackages 2,3,4,5 and 6. During these meetings results are discussed and new activities distributed between the beneficiaries. Regular telephone conferences are organized by the main beneficiary RUG (every 6-8 weeks) to discuss consortium problems, inter-work package activities, and other relevant agenda points and action points. These telephone conferences are structured by agenda and minutes, which are distributed to all participants. Work Package leaders act as supervisors of their work packages, and have regular (weekly) discussions with the main beneficiary on the work package performance. This frequent communication on different levels between the UNISEC consortium partners, provides excellent exchange of information about ongoing issues, problems, results and planning, and allows continuous supervision and coordination of all partners and their activities.
The Financial administration is being carried out by the financial department of the RUG. For the UNISEC-project a special financial officer acts as the priory contact person for all beneficiaries and one as a back-up to manage the project financially. Direct contact details between the RUG financial officer and the financial/administration representatives from all beneficiaries have been exchanged, providing reliable direct communication lines.
The management structure, based on intensive communication between the UNISEC beneficiaries in a matrix structure (horizontal structure provided by the work packages and vertical structure provided by regular communication with all partners within the general UNISEC telephone conferences and direct communications between all partners and the main beneficiary) provides an excellent and robust interaction system to optimize collaborations and communications between the different partners and to integrate their various activities within the different work packages. International exchange visits of UNISEC employees, aimed at the standardization of technologies, further enhances the ease of communication and collaborations. Annual meetings are organized by the UNISEC management, in line with the specifications as defined in the grant agreement. Examples are the UNISEC meetings with representatives from all beneficiaries in Copenhagen from 4-6 March 2015 and Berlin from 18-20 May 2016. Another established communication platform is the secured section of the UNISEC website, here all beneficiaries have specific login codes to access the secured section and to add or modify information. This platform provides a reliable tool in order to share information, to work simultaneously on protocols, exchange technologies and results etc.
Within the EU, different consortia are involved in the development of universal influenza vaccines. The RUG initiated a first get-together meeting in Riga (14 September 2014) with five different FP7 consortia: EDUFLUVAC, FLUTCORE, UNISEC, UNIVAX and FLUNIVAC to exchange information, and to discuss possible common interests. During this meeting consortium representatives met and discussed common interests. Assay development, and correlates of protection proved to be issues for all consortia. During a second meeting organized by UNISEC on 6 March 2014 it was agreed to initiate a meeting of the Innovative Task Force (EMA), in order to present the developments of universal influenza vaccines, their implications and to discuss the fact that current correlates of protection and assays have to be accepted in order to provide the option to register newly developed products within the European Union. At another UNISEC meeting on 20 May 2016 further collaborations on the a toolbox of specified viral strains and reagents, SOP protocols, access to the network of clinical study sites, and assays like ADCC and FACS analyses were discussed. Several of the EU consortia (mainly EDUFLUVAC, FLUTCORE and UNISEC are collaborating more and more in a number of activities like EDUFLUVAC workshops, and meetings with EMA and DG-Health.
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