The crisis caused by COVID-19 is the most severe disruption to health and socio-economics the world has seen for many decades. Not all countries are being affected at the same time, so the end of the pandemic will be staggered across the planet, which has complex implications for the world economy.

We at WIT are constantly and carefully monitoring the evolution of this sad phenomenon and are observing the strategies defined by the World Health Organization and the measures implemented by governments.

Our first message must be of solidarity with people affected by the disease and our deepest condolences to those who have suffered the loss of loved ones. Our hope is that this nightmare will result in the loss of as few human lives as possible.

We consider it to be of the utmost importance to heed the advice and instruction given by governments in order to help medical staff who are on the frontline of this emergency. We are optimistic that the efforts of a large number of scientists searching for a vaccine for COVID-19 will be successful in the not too distant future, providing a solution.

During this difficult time of global challenge and uncertainty, our aim is to keep our activities going as normally as possible. Of course, IT is a vital tool that facilitates communication between people in general and scientists in particular.

We want to provide regular updates for the thousands of researchers that comprise WIT´s community: those who attend our conferences, register for our short courses; publish and edit books; or send papers to WIT Press Journals - in other words, the large number of scientists who participate in the many activities of the Institute. This initiative will be realised by way of WIT's website, where we will keep the community informed of the decisions taken throughout this crisis in relation to our programme of conferences and courses. Stay tuned!

The Institute has already rescheduled the conferences that were due to take place in May and early June; they will now take place in September and early October. As mentioned above, we are aware that the scientific community continues to work hard during this unprecedented time and that many still desire to publish and disseminate their research. WIT is fully committed to facilitating such objectives, even in the exceptional situation in which we all find ourselves. To that end, we will implement ways to enable this, while taking into account the travel restrictions people face at this time.

We would like to end this message by offering you and your families the very best wishes from all of us at WIT and the hope that this difficult period will soon be over.