Interview with Vesna Vrga, Organization Committee Chair

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"We Have Got A Conference"

To whom would you wish the organization of a conference like this one - to your best friend or to your worst enemy?
Organizing such a conference is a very serious and demanding task, but it can also be a great challenge. Preparing such a conference requires lots of effort and good planning is necessary. Yet, when all the results are seen, one is left with a good experience as an outcome. In addition, if the participants are satisfied with the program and the organization of it, then the organizers themselves are pleased because they were able to reach their goals. In any case, in organizing such a conference there is enough room for friends as well as enemies!

Was it less demanding to organize this year's conference than CUC '99?
This year we have the experience from last year's conference to gall back on, which we lacked last year. Yet some problems still emerged which were not present previously. For one, some changes were made in the organizing team, but in the end, the group of people we worked with did a splendid job. Besides, we wanted CUC 2000 to be better organized than last year - to have a program of improved quality along with more partakers. All of this thought required extra dedication in organizing the conference. I am proud to say nevertheless, that we were capable of achieving both!

How much interest and understanding do sponsors have for such a conference?
Most of the firms and institutions which were sponsors last year, assisted us this year in organizing the conference; but yes, CUC 2000 has new sponsors this year as well. CARNet, as a non-profit organization can organize a more modest conference, but nevertheless, the registration fee for the conference would be higher then! The companies who sponsored this year's conference showed interest an understanding in the project, and with their donations contributed to the status and shape CUC 2000 has at present. It is for this reason that I take these opportunities to express my most heartfelt thanks.

Why is the conference not free to students?
In establishing the registration fee we sought to make the cost as tolerable as possible for all those involved, such that it would not have a negative effect in the decision of whether to come to the conference or not. Also, on the other hand, the fees will cover a good part of all costs. We hoped to encourage students to attend by offering them more reasonable registration fees. But due to limited capacities we were forced to leave the set price, making it as low as possible.

How cooperative were other institutions and organizations?
The following institutions and organizations were hosts to the conference and assisted us by offering space to work in, as well as the halls in which the conference will take place: The Faculty of Electrical Engineering and Computing in Zagreb, The Faculty of Technical Engineering in Rijeka, The Faculty of Electrical Engineering in Osijek, The Faculty of Electrical Engineering, Mechanical Engineering and Ship-Building in Split. The Ministry of Science and Technology is also one of the sponsors of the conference.