The European Communications Office (ECO) is the Secretariat of the European Conference of Postal and Telecommunications Administrations (CEPT), an organisation where policy makers and regulators from 48 countries across Europe collaborate to harmonise telecommunication, radio spectrum and postal regulations. ECO provides advice and support to CEPT to help it to develop and deliver its policies and decisions in an effective and transparent way. Its core duties are to provide a European centre of expertise in electronic communications, to contribute to the work of the three CEPT committees and to manage CEPT’s day-to-day activities. ECO further supports CEPT member countries and other stakeholders providing a forum to debate and advance European communications policy for the benefit of all Europe’s citizens.”
Mark Thomas has been Director of the European Communications Office (ECO; ERO until July 2009) since January 2007. The ECO is the permanent office of the CEPT, a body of national regulators from 48 European Countries which cooperate on a range of issues, and particularly in technical harmonisation measures in the management of radio spectrum.
Mark obtained an Honours Degree in Physics at Exeter College in the University of Oxford in 1980. He worked as a projects and planning engineer at the BBC and then in radio and transmission for the Cable and Wireless Group in the UK. He went to engineering consultants WS Atkins in 1989, and was seconded for a year as an expert for the European Commission in Road Transport Informatics (the ‘DRIVE’ R&D programme).
In 1990 he joined the new UK Radio Authority, the regulator of licensed commercial sound broadcasting services, as its Head of Engineering. The Radio Authority planned and facilitated a major expansion of services on analogue wavebands, and then with the introduction of digital radio (DAB). In 2004 the Radio Authority was replaced by the converged regulator ‘Ofcom’. As Head of Broadcast Technical Policy at Ofcom, Mark was particularly associated with the UK’s preparations for the Regional Radio Conference (RRC 06) in 2006.