MC2 project: six months afterwards

News, 18 June 2020

On 15 June, at the extended meeting of leaders of national groups held in the video conference format, the report on the progress in the implementation of the MC2 Club project was presented.

The first presentation of the project took place in December 2019 in the JINR Visit Centre. The past presentation was dedicated to its fourth anniversary. Results of the five-month work of the action group of the project were presented at the event. The group is headed by Gleb Stiforov and consists of Wladislaw Chmielowski, Otilia Culicov, Aidos Isadikov, Jan Makhonin, Petr Beneshov, Kristina Moisenz, Oleg Zhuravlev and Alexey Kurilkin. The meeting was held with the participation of the JINR Directorate, representatives of interested divisions, heads of national groups.

Leader of the Project, VBLHEP engineer Gleb Stiforov told the journalist of the JINR Weekly Newspaper about the progress in the implementation of the project and its further development.

“Gleb Gennadievich, could you remind us how the project started?”

“In December 2018, a group of specialists from JINR, CERN and other centres decided to create a source that would combine information about opportunities for specialists coming to CERN and its neighbourhood: how to rent an apartment, where to go for weekends, how to use public transport… As a result, a website was created, materials were printed and various useful articles were written by the spring of 2019. Around the same time, the project started working in JINR but we mostly focused our efforts on services from various city companies. Over time, we attracted attention, and the JINR Directorate officially supported our club. The project has been developing faster since then. Nowadays, the project has two directions, and I have mentioned it in the overview. These are the support of foreign employees and provision of services to all the JINR staff members.”

“Let’s consider the first direction. How exactly is the project supposed to help foreign employees?”

“At the first presentation, the action group proposed and the JINR leaders supported the idea to work out a set of instructions for foreign employees. We were supposed to provide necessary information for all the stages of the interaction with JINR: before the arrival, upon the arrival or stay and during the departure from the Institute, from Dubna. Such topics were specified as scientific visits, employment, children, personal car ownership and many others.

Now, almost six months afterwards, such a set of instructions has been developed, and we are going to get the approval of the JINR Directorate and relevant offices to publish it on the website and then, of course, get feedback and offers of guests and employees of the Institute.”

“The website will be in Russian?”

“We are going to organize English-language support for foreign employees by phone and email in the future. We will also keep already existing materials up to date and create new ones. Its printed and electronic (in pdf format, for example) versions will be possibly issued.”

“Now let’s pass on to the second direction: help to all the JINR employees.”

“We will start with bad news: it was said at the first presentation that negotiations with UBER Russia were beginning and we received promo codes for the staff. However, UBER Russia suspended them due to the self-isolation regime to support their drivers. Now, we are waiting for everything to return to normal.

We have agreed with Megafon and Beeline upon special rates but the mobile network providers cannot introduce them without the official approval of the JINR leaders (if we talk about the delay briefly). At the moment, about 300 applications for special rates have been collected from employees. I think that there will be more after the rates will be provided.”

“Any good news?”

“Yes, of course. The “Planeta zdorovia” pharmacy net has provided to JINR employees VIP-cards with a 7% discount. It is a real discount given right at the moment of payment. They are not saving cards. We have organized the distribution of these cards among employees and have already received more than 100 new requests for such cards. On this occasion, I should say that any staff member may submit a request on the website in the “Contact” section or in our groups on social networks.

We were also supported by other companies: an auto parts supplier, BranQuiz intellectual quiz (it organizes games like “What? Where? When?” but thematic ones, for example, about films, music, etc.).”

“How do you imagine the development of the project in the nearest future? What are your plans?”

“We are now negotiating with a large number of companies. The most famous of them are OZON, Avito and the educational portal “GeekBrains”.

There are many requests, and we just do not have time to process all of them. Some of them are from suppliers of electronics, household appliances and many others. All employees who have any proposals or requests may send them via the feedback form on our website or on social networks. We will be glad to receive offers and feedback.”

“How big can the project become in your opinion?”

“In JINR, CERN and other scientific and university centres of the world, numerous scientists and engineers work. They have enough knowledge and ideas in various fields: science, technology, education and many others. I hope that in the long long perspective, the MC2 Club will become a platform able to introduce and unite all these people so that they can put their ideas into practice.”

“Such an ambitious idea! Are there any, shall we say, omens that it will go beyond the Institute community?”

“I would like to note that numerous city organizations are evaluating our club, and I hope that our family of scientists and specialists will be extended.”

“Please, tell us about those who work on the project.”

“The team working on the development of the club’s services is still forming. It includes colleagues from JINR, CERN and other scientific centres, as well as employees of famous Russian and foreign companies. At the moment, I can say for sure that this idea would have been impossible to implement without any of our participants. I would particularly like to mention Wladislaw Chmielowski, Otilia Culicov, Aidos Issadykov, Jan Makhonin and Kristina Moisenz. I would like to express special gratitude to Head of the International Cooperation Department Dmitry Vladimirovich Kamanin for his support and solving of administrative issues.”

After the presentation, participants of the meeting shared their opinions and offers, asked questions.

V. A. Matveev: I was deeply impressed with the presentation by Gleb. Since the first presentation, the action group has achieved tremendous success, such involvement and results! I promise you to provide all kinds of help and assistance of the Directorate. I believe that this is very useful.”

J. Makhonin: “I think that the MC2 project is very important, and I am happy that I can take part in it. It is mainly due to the fact that foreign employees coming to the Institute may be disoriented and need help. It is now very important to gain feedback and begin active communication with users of this platform.”

V. Chmielowski: Taking this opportunity, I would like to say that Gleb was the soul of the whole project. Much has been already done, and I am sure that everything will be completed.”

G. V. Trubnikov: “I really like what Gleb has presented, and I have two proposals. In order to make the entire information about JINR in-demand, links to these articles should be available in other forums. In CERN at least. Many scientific centres can quickly help their staff to clarify and solve any issues. Secondly, an analytical working group for the creation of a more advanced image of the Institute has been established by the order of the Director. We have formulated the questions a specialist asks before the arrival to Dubna. The first one relates to work and tasks: research infrastructure, workplace, internet, etc. The next one is about coming with a family: where will my children study, what are the health system and the place of residence (we do not mean corporate apartments but the comfortable city and social environment)? And what Gleb has told us today is exactly the creation of such a comfortable environment in the Institute. I believe that it is necessary to unite the efforts with the analytical group that is creating a “magnet for intelligence”, if you like, for talented people of Russia, the Member States and countries that are not participants of the Institute yet, who would like to come for work and be a part of the JINR projects.”

There were questions about merging with the domain, development of the mobile app. D. V. Kamanin suggested taking into account the feedback issue in the following way: “Not only the opinion of coming specialists is important to us but also an active spread of information about the Institute regarding issues considered here today and more. It is important to maintain contacts with those who have been to JINR. First of all, this will help them to feel like family members. We would like them to leave with favourable feelings. And we want to share with them up-to-date information about the Institute.”

Galina Myalkovskaya, JINR Weekly Newspaper