The Ninth Annual Conference was held in Nitra, Slovakia and primarily hosted by the Slovak Agricultural University. Nitra is a city of about 100,000 people and has been an important center since the 8th and 9th centuries when two large Slovanic castles were located there. Overlooking the city is a castle with Baroque fortifications. The local landmark is the Cathedral composed of three churches, the oldest a Romanesque structure dating from the 11th century plus a Gothic upper church from the 14th century.
The Opening Session and Reception on Sunday afternoon were held in the Rectorate of the Agricultural University. Rector Miroslav Zima presided over the Session and hosted the reception, along with a number of distinguished dignitaries, among them the Slovak Republic's new minister of education and the mayor of the city of Nitra.
Conferees were housed in the Agroinstitut, where all sessions of the Conference took place in facilities ideal for a conference of our size. A new, well appointed Congress Hall seating 200 was used for plenary sessions; parallel sessions were held in a number of nearby meeting rooms. A permanently installed computer facility with 11 networked stations provided participants with Internet and computing support.
The tradition of a banquet on Tuesday evening to celebrate the Alliance and its members continued. This year's occurred at the Primates Palace in downtown Bratislava, the capital of the Slovak Republic. Mr. Peter KRESÁNEK, the Lord-Mayor of Bratislava, welcomed Conference delegates to this historic place.
More information on this year's conference will be added to this site in the weeks ahead.