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Young investigator forum "Little Brain Big Brain" – founded by Michael Schemann and myself back in 1989, we never thought that it would survive that long. It will have its 16th edition in Australia 2021, has seen more than 500 young scientists, of which many have become world leaders in their respective area of expertise. The basic idea has not changed over the years: a limited number of young scientists (max 35, younger than me once was the agreed definition), everybody has to present, no silence audience, and discussions as long as needed, self-organized, changing responsibility and no formal structure as a society. It usually precedes the bi-annual International Neurogastro-Federation meeting.

Young investigator project "TANDEM" – the European counter-part to the international LBBB meeting, with a different format: Tandems are built between basic and clinical scientists that have to develop and propose a common research project to be presented at the meeting - the best is selected for receiving seed money. TANDEM usually precedes the bi-annual meeting of the European Society of Neurogastroenterology and Motility (ESNM) as is its independently organized young investigator forum.

European Society of Neurogastroenterology and Motility (ESNM)- for the last 15 years (until 2019) I was the treasurer of the society that became the stronghold of neurogastroenterology in Europe, full member of the United European Gastroenterology (UEG) federation and counterpart of the American Neurogastroenterology and Motility Society (ANMS). Together with Fernando Azpiroz from Barcelona, Spain, we reorganized the society in 2005 and made it a financially solid and scientifically active society representing 17 national neurogastroenterology chapters across Europe.

Deutsche Gesellschaft für Neurogastroenterologie und Motilität(DGNM), the German chapter of the ESNM. It has a much longer history, was founded in 1978 by Martin Wienbeck and Gerhard Lux, and is among the largest of the national societies in ESNM. With Michael Schemann and others, we re-organized it in 1989, and I held the treasurer position ever since and until 2018 when I became honorary president for lifetime.


In 2015, Fernando Azpiroz and myself founded the Gut Microbiota and Health (GM&H) Section within ESNM, and with the support of some industrial sponsors (Danone) established a bi-annual meeting (Microbiota Summit) alternating between European und the US. It is also the home of the most successful and decorated web-based information platform on microbiota research across the planet

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