EAS Council


The council is the governing body of the Society and it manages, directs, and controls the affairs and property of the Society within the limits of the Bye-laws.

The council consists of the five officers of the Society: the President, two Vice-Presidents, the Secretary, the Treasurer, and of five other members. Members of the Council serve for a period of four years, according to the schedule of the Bye-laws.

All members of Council are elected by the members of the Society. Normally the Council proposes a slate of candidates for the vacant posts. This slate may not contain the names of members of Council except in the case of the nominations for President, Secretary and Treasurer or in case a Council member has been temporarily appointed to fill a vacancy. In selecting the candidates, Council shall pay due attention to attaining a reasonable balance, geographically and in scientific expertise. Under the conditions specified by the Bye-laws, groups of members or Affiliated Societies may nominate additional candidates. If no other candidates are nominated, the candidates proposed by Council will be considered to have been elected; otherwise the election will be conducted by mail as specified in the Bye-laws. All questions of procedure and interpretation shall be resolved by Council.

Details from the Bye-laws:

  1. Members of Council will serve for a period of four years with half of the Council rotating off every two years. The President, one Vice-President, the Treasurer and two Councillors will rotate off together; the other Vice-President, the Secretary and the other three Councillors will rotate off two years later.
  2. Council will propose by mail to the ordinary members and to the affiliated Societies a slate of candidates for vacant posts on the Council no later then six months before the vacancies normally arise. Council may appoint a Nominating Committee and delegate this task to that Committee. Groups of at least 20 ordinary members or (groups of) Affiliated Societies with at least 50 ordinary Society members may nominate additional candidates, provided such candidates have indicated in writing that they are willing to serve if elected. Such nominations are valid only if they reach the Secretary within two months following the date of the mailing of the slate proposed by Council. If such additional nominations have been made, then no later than one month after the deadline for receipt of nominations, the Secretary will mail to all ordinary members ballots containing the nominations proposed by Council and the additional nominations. The persons having received the largest number of votes, by a count of t he ballots received within two months from the date on which the ballots were mailed, will be considered to have been elected.


Thierry Courvoisier (Switzerland) — President (since 2010)
Thierry Courvoisier obtained a PhD in theoretical physics at the University of Zurich in 1980. He then spent 4 years working with ESA's EXOSAT satellite at the European Space Operations Center (ESOC) of ESA in Darmstadt and 4 years at the Space Telescope European Coordinating facility in ESO in Garching. He joined the Observatory of the Geneva University in 1988. He is full professor there and leads the INTEGRAL Science Data Centre (ISDC) in Versoix near Geneva. His research has been centred mostly on multi-wavelength observations and interpretation of Active Galactic Nuclei and on high energy astrophysics. Since 2012, he is also the President of the Swiss Academy of Sciences (SCNAT).
Roger Davies (UK) — President Elect (since 2016, Councillor since 2012)
Responsibility: liaise with international organisations such as ESO, ESA, IAU and the EPS
Serena Viti (UK) — Secretary (since 2012)
Johan Knapen (Spain) — Treasurer (since 2014, Councillor since 2012)
Other Responsibility: International Year of Light 2015
Emmanouil Angelakis (Germany) — Vice-President (since 2014)
Responsibility: overseeing the issues on education and astronomers outside academia
Sofia Feltzing (Sweden) — Councillor (since 2016)
Responsibility: liaise with Astronet and the European Commission
Lex Kaper (The Netherlands) — Councillor (since 2016)
Responsibility: overseeing the organisation of EWASS
Georges Meylan (Switzerland) — Councillor (since 2016)
Responsibility: chair EAS Prize Committees (Tycho Brahe and MERAC prizes) — oversee nomination of the Lodewijk Woltjer Lecturer
Coralie Neiner (France) — Councillor (since 2014)
Responsibility: Facebook content, recruitment of Organisational Members
Olga Sil'chenko (Russia) — Councillor (since 2014)
Responsibility: liaison with the Affiliated Societies, notably in the Eastern European Region — liaison with the Russian Academy and ROSKOSMOS
Maarten Baes (Belgium) — Newsletter Editor (since 2016)


The EAS Council holds two meetings every year, one at the beginning of the year (in Rolle since 2012) and one during the annual EWASS conference in June/July.

The minutes of the Council meetings are not publicly available, but those of the Business Meetings held by Council with the representatives of the EAS Affiliated Societies are on-line.

A confusion arises due to the former denomination of the Business Meetings as "Council Meetings", until the change specified in article V.1 of the EAS Bye-laws in 2009.