Documents, Reports, Statements and Talks

International Meeting of Funding Agencies for Particle Physics and Future Facilities
30 July 2003, London, UK

1. A meeting was held on 30 July 2003 of representatives from Canada (NSERC), CERN (President of Council and DG), France (CNRS), Germany (BMBF), Italy (INFN), UK (PPARC), and the US (DOE, NSF, OSTP). It had been recognised that a forum of potential funding agencies/sponsors was needed to interact with, and respond to, the scientific committees that had already been established to make the case for a linear collider. This meeting was an informal body to share views and opinions on prospects and issues in each of the states involved. The group discussed the status of current funding for a proposed linear collider (LC) and their perceptions of the prospects for the future of particle physics.

2. All agencies recognised the immediate priority of successful completion of the LHC for the future of particle physics research. At a political level there was a need to place the linear collider in an overall global strategy for future opportunities in high energy physics and to identify the technologies and expertise that needs to be maintained for opportunities beyond the LHC. It was agreed that the remit of the committee be widened to consider the future programme of particle and astro-particle physics.

3. The group recognised that a requirement of some of the agencies and governments would be a need to see three distinct phases of a proposed LC project, with decision points between the phases. These three phases would be a) an R&D phase, by the end of which the main technology choices would be made, b) an engineering design phase, the output of which would be the optimised technologies and a fully costed construction proposal, and c) a construction phase.

4. It was believed that the initial R&D design phase could be funded through existing funding routes and structures in the participating states with a light coordination. However, the group also believed in the need for global governance of the engineering phase and the establishment of an international design team to carry out this phase.

5. The group discussed the desire of the scientific community for concurrent running of a LC with the LHC. It also discussed the importance of ining maintaining a viable community of physicists and engineers who would ensure the vitality of the field in the future. It was felt that it is important that the technology choice report to be made by the ICFA group should be made in a timely and expeditious manner and detail the technical rationale for the choice. It was also felt that a technology choice as a matter of principle should not prejudice a site selection.

6. It was not expected that the technology choice would not exclude continued low level research into other technologies important for future developments and facilities in the field.

7. The group did not discuss the relative merits of possible sites but recognised that many of the project governance issues would be influenced by the site choice. Hence, it was agreed that the choice of site should be made as early as possible in the R&D phase.

8. The group agreed to hold a further informal meeting in February/ March 2004 at which it hoped that representatives of the Asia area could be present. Items for discussion would include the overall strategy for high energy physics, potential governance models for a LC and impact on these of the site choice, and a first discussion of project management structures.

30 July 2003

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