The annual meeting of the Association for Dental Education in Europe was held in the picturesque capital of Riga, Latvia and was held under the presidency of Professor Damien Walmsley. The theme was “Emerging New Approaches to Dental Education” and it was also the occasion of the Silver Jubilee 40 years of ADEE meetings. The topics of the key note speakers looked at differing trends in Dental Education. There were either reflecting on previous funded initiatives such as the thematic network “Dented” and its influences on the curriculum to a lecture on Vision 2020 shaping the future of oral health. There was an entertaining lecture on studying both chimpanzees and bonobos to determine if we can learn from their cultures. There was a particularly thought provoking lecture on how consumerism influences people’s attitude to their health and life style choices.
Prior to the meeting the European Dental Students Association (EDSA) held their meeting and Marco Mazemet was elected President. Marco spent his Erasmus period undertaking research at Birmingham. Our EDSA rep, Andrew Kalli was an active participant in their meeting. Birmingham teachers were well represented and delegates included Professor Deborah Deborah White, Mr Upen Patel and PhD student Siva Jayachandran. Upen was a particularly active Birmingham participant presenting work to the conference on the CAFS – iPad student record keeping initiative (poster and lecture). He was also presented with the ADEE Excellence in Dental Education Early Career Award. It was a real Birmingham event with Prof Walmsley ADEE President giving the award.
Although last year Birmingham was considered to be an excellent conference, the organisers in Riga looked to their city and University to provide inspiration. It must be said that the delegates felt that they had even outdone Birmingham in the Quality and organisation of the conference which is some feat. The conference covered such a varied range of subjects both in the lectures, posters and special interest groups that there was something for everyone’s interest in Dental Education. There were many take home messages and delegates will be enriching their own schools the quality of the teaching information that was presented at Riga. Next year it is taking place in Szeged – See you all there!