This webpage provides information about how the EMA came to be established.
At the XI Congress of European Mycologists in Kew, UK (1992), the question of establishing regional groups within the International Mycological Association was raised and, following discussion Dr David Pegler and Dr Leif Ryvarden prepared Statutes for use by future Congresses in the series. At the XIII Congress of European Mycologists in Alcalá de Henares, Spain (1999), Dr Eef Arnolds of the Netherlands pointed out the need for a society to represent mycology at a European level. The XIII Congress supported his view, and charged him, Dr David Minter of the UK and Dr Reinhold Pöder of Austria to investigate the possibility of establishing a European-level organization to represent mycologists, and to report back to the XIV Congress of European Mycologists due to be held in Crimea, Ukraine (2003).
In February 2003, advice and opinions were sought from various mycological societies in Europe, and from about 350 European mycologists in a very wide range of European countries (Armenia, Austria, Belarus, Belgium, Bulgaria, Czech Republic, Denmark, Estonia, Finland, France, Georgia, Germany, Greece, Hungary, Italy, Latvia, Lithuania, Luxembourg, Netherlands, Norway, Poland, Portugal, Rumania, Russia, Slovakia, Spain, Sweden, Switzerland, Turkey, Ukraine, UK), all contacted through e-mails jointly sent by Dr Tetiana Andrianova (Ukraine) and Dr Minter (UK), both involved with organization of the XIV Congress. The objective of the e-mail was to establish whether general opinion supported establishment of a European-level organization to represent mycologists and, if so, to stimulate debate and solicit views about its possible form and function in preparation for a special session devoted to the topic at the XIV Congress. A little later, Dr Pöder prepared a draft text setting out some of the main issues to be addressed. As a result of the survey, a consultation document was prepared by Dr Minter, Dr Andrianova and Dr Pöder for the XIV Congress. In that document, on the basis of responses, discussion, and general interest, they recommended that a European Mycological Association should be established by the XIV Congress.
The document was discussed at a special business meeting “Establishing the European Mycological Association” held on 26 September 2003 during the XIV Congress (minutes). Over 110 delegates from around 30 countries were present at the meeting. Dr Minter was rapporteur. The idea of establishing a European Mycological Association received universal support. It was agreed that the term “European” should be defined broadly, geographically, and not politically, and that the working language of the Association should be English. Officers (President, two Secretaries and a Treasurer) and a Steering Group (to help the Officers start the Association) were elected. Founder Members appointed the same people to form an initial Council to draft a Constitution and Rules, to circulate those drafts to Founder Members to modify them in the light of comments received, and finally to organize a ballot of all Founder Members to ratify the first Constitution and Rules. It was agreed that a ballot using electronic post (where available) would be acceptable.