Welcome by the International INCE

Dear colleagues,

It is my real honour and pleasure to welcome you to our annual meeting, the 45th International Congress and Exposition on Noise Control Engineering, INTER-NOISE 2016, in the wonderful city of Hamburg, Germany. Although this welcome together with the excitement at the prospect of the conference may risk to become a matter of routine for the I-INCE President, I can assure you that my joyful expectation is particularly true and strong this year: Because it simply is a wonderful thing to meet - and see - you, the international community of noise control engineers, as guests in my own country, in Germany, and to make me feel a guest there myself in fact.

I thus feel urged on expressing a double welcome even: the welcome of I-INCE, the International Institute of Noise Control Engineering, as well as the welcome of the many colleagues doing effective and successful noise control engineering in Germany since many years. By bringing together these two souls in my chest, by even making them welcome each other, the forthcoming meeting definitely offers a most remarkable peculiarity and personal attractiveness to me. I am sure that bringing together noise control engineers from all over the world and making them constructively encounter the long tradition of German noise control efforts offers a unique chance for further promotion of our discipline. As in many other European cities and countries, disastrous devastation of World War Two in Germany necessitated intensive reconstruction works which, together with growing demands for well-being and quality, then were the starting point of explicitly aiming for acoustic quality. Consequently, over the following decades Germany and Europe essentially contributed to effective noise control methods and technologies of high maturity. The corresponding worldwide development and establishment of Engineering Acoustics as an indispensable discipline of Engineering at all motivated for and then strongly benefitted from the support of the INTER-NOISE conference series (since 1972) and its institutional body I-INCE which had been founded in 1974 to basically
• establish, strengthen and further develop the discipline and the profession of noise control engineering and to
• implement and maintain a continuous platform for scientific and technological exchange of views, experiences and ideas.

While joining the long and proud tradition of German and European acoustics and noise control engineering, INTER-NOISE 2016 in Hamburg will be the 45th meeting within this series, the second in Germany after Munich 1985 and the 18th in Europe, thus clearly demonstrating the continuity in both, ongoing need for and successful use of regular personal communication, information and exchange. This is particularly important because our matter, the matter of successfully controlling noise and improving the sound quality around us, is a long-term matter. In spite of the many successful noise reducing activities in the past, unwanted sounds are far from being under control within acceptable limits. On the contrary we have to endure that all success in noise control tends to be compensated by ongoing mechanization and industrialization which in turn needs more - and new - control efforts. Therefore, our professional task is not clearly set in time, it is a permanent challenge rather, a job never being fully done but having to be done every day again. However, although being consigned to eternity, this task is not a Sisyphean one because our efforts are not useless at all - they bring us evident, verifiable success instead of the saga's unending frustration.

Such recent success will be highlighted in the forthcoming days of INTER-NOISE 2016 in Hamburg which will help to update and redefine the state of our art and available technology and to discuss aspects and priorities of our future work. Use your participation as a delegate to engage yourself, become active in the many presentations and discussions and thus help to identify further potential for noise control and noise control engineering in both, research and practical application. Receive the stimulating cosmopolitan atmosphere of Hamburg and mutually stimulate yourselves by sharing the latest news, developments and experiences with your colleagues. If you do so, if you use the platform of INTER-NOISE for what it has been prepared for, then the success of INTER-NOISE 2016 is predictable, can be taken for sure.

Of course such optimism takes for granted what cannot be taken for granted at all because it is the result of hard self-sacrificing work of the hosting team: the Deutsche Gesellschaft für Akustik DEGA (German Acoustical Society) and the many supporting people and institutions around. From all I noticed, however, I am sure we will find an optimal platform and ideal conditions for us and for our matter. I therefore would like to thank our hosts, the organizing and scientific committees and all other contributors for their enormous efforts to make INTER-NOISE 2016 a successful, enjoyable and unforgettable event. So welcome to INTER-NOISE 2016, welcome to Germany and welcome to the inspiring city of Hamburg, often said to be the "Tor zur Welt", the "gate to the world" because of its important seaport. Let us temporarily, from August 21 to 24, make Hamburg the place to be for noise control engineers and let us jointly use this gate as gate to our professional world and to a productive, fruitful and pleasant meeting towards a - following the conference theme - quieter future!

Joachim Scheuren, President of I-INCE