Spanish Relativity Meetings (ERE)

Brief History of the ERE

Collected and written by J. M. M. Senovilla

The Spanish Relativity Meetings (Encuentros Relativistas Españoles, ERE) are annual gatherings organized by Gravitation, Relativity and Cosmology groups linked to the SEGRE ---generally spanish groups, but this is not necessary---, held in cities chosen by the organizing group ---usually spanish, but also from other countries. Many spanish researchers on Relativity, Gravitation and Cosmology usually attend the meetings, but not only them. The idea is that each active group working on gravitation and related matters explains their main interests and achievements while interacting with other groups and colleagues, at an international level, in a friendly and usually very pleasant atmosphere. These meetings are also an invaluable place where young students can learn the latest developments and the worth-exploring lines of investigation. Thay can also train themselves in the english language at the same time that they present their own research progress and results.

The meetings are held in September by tradition, unless in exceptional cases, and are organized by the different research or university groups related somehow to the SEGRE in succession. Hitherto, there have been more than thirty-five meetings (see the full list below), and sometimes they have been held within other series of meetings, such as the Summer School at El Escorial or Santander, or the Scientific Meetings of the Mediterranean Sea (Trobades Científiques de la Mediterrània), among others.

It all started with a course given by Prof. Lluís Bel at the Universitat Autònoma de Barcelona (where Lluís Mas and his students were) in 1976, in which people with interest in Gravitation and Relativity (very few at that time!) had the opportunity to meet and got to know each other. In 1976 (just after dictator's death), those researchers were concentrated mainly ---but not only--- in Barcelona and Madrid. Following the leadership by Bel, the wish to continue the contacts and the collaborations immediately appeared, and the idea of holding meetings where everyone could explain and discuss the ongoing work emerged. Thus, there was a first gathering* organized by the Universidad Autónoma de Madrid (where Jesús Martín and students were in 1977) to which a substancial number of people from Barcelona, both from the Universitat Autònoma de Barcelona (with Lluís Mas and his students) and from the Universitat de Barcelona (where Ramon Lapiedra, his students and colleagues were then) attended.

The first editions of the meetings gathered many of these spanish researchers, who were scarce in number and without much financial support from the institutions at that time. Nevertheless, those pioneers (led essentially by Prof. Lluís Bel and his mentioned collaborators, mainly Ramon Lapiedra, Jesús Martín and Lluís Mas) persevered with the efforts of maintaining alive the meetings and the relativity field in Spain. Thanks to them, the relativistic community grew very much during the 80's. Today there are many relatively big groups of an excellent quality around the country, and the international connections and collaborations are numerous, fruitful and intense nowadays.

In this sense, there were several important turning points for the structure of the ERE, such as the Spanish Relativity Meetings held in Bilbao in 1982, in Salamanca in 1988, again in Salamanca in 1998 and 2008, in Oviedo in 2005, in Bilbao in 2009, Granada in 2010 and Guimarães in 2012. The ERE1982 proceedings were published for the first time, as have been ever since. In ERE1988, the organizers chose a monographic subject of interest and relevance (namely, Gravitational Wave Detection) and split the meeting in two different parts: the first having plenary lectures by international invited speakers and contributions related with the monographic matter; the second following the tradition and containing several workshops where the interaction between groups was kept. This pattern was followed by all the organizers of the subsequent meetings until today. The ERE1998 included a deserved Bel-fest on the occasion of his official retirement, while the ERE2009 did the same in honour of Jesús Martín, Chus, when he became 65. The ERE2005, ERE2008 and ERE2010 achieved the record of attendancies, with more than 150 participants from all over the world. Finally, the ERE2012 achieved the breakage of political and national barriers and was held in the beatiful city of Guimarães, the cradle of Portugal, organized by the Universidade do Minho.

Nowadays, the Spanish Relativity Meetings are deservely well-known and enjoy a good reputation around the world. Many relativists from all possible geographic origins have attended some of the latest editions.

The full list of the ERE editions together with those to come in the near future are given in what follows, including the organizing group and the place where the meeting took place.


Edición Organizador Sede
ERE1977* Universidad Autónoma de Madrid Madrid
ERE1978 Universitat Autònoma de Barcelona Barcelona
ERE1979 Universidad de Granada Granada
ERE1980 Universidad de Santander Santander
ERE1981 Universidad de Salamanca Salamanca
ERE1982 Euskal Herriko Unibertsitatea Bilbao
ERE1983 Universitat de les Illes Balears Palma de Mallorca
ERE1984 Universidad de Santander Santander
ERE1985 Universitat de Barcelona Maó, Menorca
ERE1986 Universitat de València València
ERE1987 Instituto de Astrofísica de Canarias La Laguna, Tenerife
ERE1988 Universidad de Salamanca Salamanca
ERE1989 Universitat Autònoma de Barcelona Barcelona
ERE1990 Universitat de les Illes Balears Palma de Mallorca
ERE1991 Euskal Herriko Unibertsitatea Bilbao
ERE1992 Universidad Complutense de Madrid El Escorial, Madrid
ERE1993 Universidad de Oviedo Salas, Asturias
ERE1994 Universitat de Barcelona Maó, Menorca
ERE1995 Instituto de Astrofísica de Canarias La Laguna, Tenerife
ERE1996 Universitat de València València
ERE1997 Universitat de les Illes Balears Palma de Mallorca
ERE1998 Universidad de Salamanca Salamanca
ERE1999 Euskal Herriko Unibertsitatea Bilbao
ERE2000 Universidad de Valladolid Valladolid
ERE2001 U. Complutense y U. Politécnica Madrid Madrid
ERE2002 Universitat de Barcelona Maó, Menorca
ERE2003 Universitats d'Alacant i València Alacant
ERE2004 Universidad Autónoma de Madrid - CSIC Madrid
ERE2005 Universidad de Oviedo Oviedo
ERE2006 Universitat de les Illes Balears Palma de Mallorca
ERE2007 Instituto de Astrofísica de Canarias Puerto de la Cruz, Tenerife
ERE2008 Universidad de Salamanca Salamanca
ERE2009 Euskal Herriko Unibertsitatea Bilbao
ERE2010 Instituto de Astrofísica de Andalucía - CSIC Granada
ERE2011 Universidad Complutense de Madrid Madrid
ERE2012 Universidade do Minho Guimarães, Portugal
ERE2013 Universitat de Barcelona Benasque, Huesca
ERE2014 Universitat de Valencia (ADEIT) Valencia
ERE2015 Universitat de les Illes Balears Palma de Mallorca
* This first edition, sometimes called the "zero-th meeting", was not called ERE yet, but everyone recognizes it as the starting point of the ERE series.