Celebrating our
first year in Bonn

Highlights of our Bonn journey

9 December 2020

As a consequence of Brexit, ECMWF must open offices within EU territory. Following an international tender amongst its Member States, ECMWF Council selects Bonn as Centre’s new and third site. The new offices provide a central location in continental Europe.

13 September 2021

ECMWF officially becomes a multi-site organisation, with the opening ceremony for offices in Bonn. The data centre in Bologna, Italy, officially opened the following day. Bonn will host the Copernicus Atmosphere Monitoring and Climate Change Services as well as other ECMWF staff.

30 March 2022

ECMWF is joined by representatives of the European Space Agency, EUMETSAT and the European Commission at a virtual event to inaugurate the EU-initiative Destination Earth. ECMWF’s activities as part of this initiative are to be based in Bonn.

7 April 2022

A first internal event is held, marking not only a gradual post-COVID return to site, but also an opportunity for new staff in Bonn to meet face to face. Staff were joined by colleagues from neighbouring organisations.

13 May 2022

Director of Forecasts, Florian Pappenberger, gives a talk at the Bonn Night of Science, discussing weather forecasting and Earth system simulations. ECMWF is now part of the Bonn international community.

23–27 May 2022

Almost 40 ECMWF scientists take part in the European Space Agency’s 2022 Living Planet Symposium in Bonn, giving presentations and contributing to discussions. An opportunity to rekindle relationships in a post-COVID world.

7–10 June 2022

The Copernicus Atmosphere Monitoring Service holds its sixth annual General Assembly in Bonn, welcoming attendees in person and online.

6 September 2022

BMDV State Secretary Stefan Schnorr visits ECMWF offices and engages with staff about the activities being run from the Bonn site.

A few dates to look forward to...

20 September 2022

ECMWF formally marks its first year in Bonn.

13 October 2022

The Center for Earth System Observations and Computational analysis (CESOC) and ECMWF sign an MoU marking the start of a broad scientific collaboration between the Centre and several German academic institutions.

8–9 December 2022

ECMWF will host the kick off meeting of WarmWorld. Funded by the German Federal Ministry of Education and Research (BMBF), the project explores the scalable development and application of climate information systems. The project is led by the Max-Planck Institute, Deutsches KlimaRechenZentrum and Alfred-Wegener Institute. It brings together partners from the Max Planck Society, Helmholtz Association, as well as DWD and ECMWF.

Florence Rabier, Director-General, ECMWF

"Becoming a multi-site organisation has been an
important step for ECMWF.

"The location in Bonn enables further collaboration with scientific institutions across Germany and the region, and closer connection with ECMWF Member States across continental Europe. In particular, ECMWF will collaborate with the Center for Earth System Observations and Computational analysis (CESOC), which integrates research at the Universities of Bonn and Cologne, as well as the Forschungszentrum Jülich.

"Embarking on this new phase of ECMWF’s life in the midst of a global pandemic has been a challenge for all involved. As we mark our first year in Bonn, I want to express our most sincere thanks to the German authorities and to all our Member States who have supported this adventure. I also want to pay tribute to our staff who have shown nothing but good spirit and humour during the starting phase of our life in Bonn.”

Meet some of the Bonn team

Ulrike Falk

Ulrike’s work has focused on atmospheric physics and boundary layer meteorology, including combining the techniques of remote sensing data analysis and modelling. Her last big project was on the glaciological and hydrological changes taking place on King George Island in Antarctica. She has worked in many other parts of the world, including Venezuela, Indonesia, the USA, Uzbekistan and West Africa.

Having spent her career working in climate research, Ulrike is delighted to contribute to strengthening international efforts on the mitigation of climate change and its impacts on people.

Despite her experience of working all around the world, Bonn remains amongst Ulrike’s favourite destinations. She enjoys all the green space and the many opportunities for outdoor activities.

Ernest Koffi

Having been awarded a PhD in Atmospheric Physics from the Paul Sabatier University in France, Ernest went on to work in meteorology and climate at research institutions across Europe.

As a scientific officer at the European Joint Research Centre, Ernest was evaluating the Copernicus Atmosphere Monitoring Service (CAMS) methane products. When the opportunity arose to join the CAMS team at ECMWF to work on modelling of greenhouse gases, he jumped at the chance.

Ernest is enjoying life in Bonn, which is just the right size town for him. He looks forward to his work on providing near real-time greenhouse gas products, which could help mitigate some effects of climate change.

Fatemeh Pouyan

The opportunities that ECMWF provides to computational scientists are what attracted Fatemeh to join the team. With a doctorate in computer science, her interests are in computer architecture, high performance computing, performance modelling and programming.

Applying these interests to climate and weather forecasting has been an exciting challenge for Fatemeh. With a keen natural curiosity, she looks forward broadening her skills and boosting her problem-solving abilities in her new role.

Since joining the ECMWF team, the chance to work and interact with experts in many different domains has been exciting for her. She has found the Bonn offices to be a very friendly environment and has appreciated being made to feel so welcome.

The Bonn offices today host over 100 ECMWF staff.

Bonn is now the official hub for the ECMWF Copernicus and Destination Earth teams. To ensure that the critically important synergies between all our activities are maintained and enhanced, our Bonn offices also host staff from all other ECMWF departments.

Half of the staff currently in Bonn are newcomers, recruited to join our Destination Earth activities, whilst the other half have transferred from our Reading offices in the UK.

Job vacancies in Bonn

Interested in joining the team in Bonn? Explore our current vacancies, which can be filtered by location.

Press kit

More information about our work at our Bonn offices can be found in the press kit for our opening ceremony.

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