About Quasimeme

 

 

 

 

Since 1st January 2011, Quasimeme is part of WEPAL (Wageningen Evaluating Programmes for Analytical Laboratories.  WEPAL is accredited for the organisation of Interlaboratory Studies by the Dutch Accreditation Council RvA since April 26, 2000 (registration number R002). The accreditation is based on the ISO 17043 requirements. The scope can be found at: http://www.wepal.nl/website/about_wepal/Scope.htm. Now that Quasimeme is part of WEPAL their scope is increased with Quasimeme’s exercise determinands. See our brochure for more details.

 

Backround information:

 

Our Name
The acronym QUASIMEME comes from it´s EU project name "Quality Assurance of Information for Marine Environmental Monitoring in Europe" which was founded in 1992. At the heart of the programme is a holistic learn-by-doing spiral. The rountine laboratory performance studies provide the basis of external quality assurance for institutes that make regular chemical measurements in the marine environment.  

 

QUASIMEME supports laboratories with:

 

• External Quality Assurance

• Accreditation

• Evidence of laboratory competence

• Quality of environmental data

 

QUASIMEME is more than a proficiency testing scheme.

The holistic approach to Quality Assurance provides:

 

• Confidential information on laboratory performance

• Natural test materials of relevant matrices with determinands at realistic concentrations

• Wet biota and sediment homogenates with full evidence of homogeneity

• Full statistical assessment, performance summary sheets

and exercise reports

• Development exercises for new or difficult analyses

• Workshops for discussion and improvement in

methodology

• Helpdesk

• QUASIMEME workshops, newsletters and conferences

 

QUASIMEME is an interactive scheme. Participants can request specific determinands and matrices for inclusion in the programme, make suggestions for development exercises and workshop topics.

 

Participation in QUASIMEME has been shown to improve the performance of laboratories.

 

History 
The European Union (EU) supported the QUASIMEME project between 1992 and 1996. Its aim was to develop a holistic quality assurance programme for marine environmental monitoring information in Europe. As a result of this pioneering project a marine network and laboratory performance studies have been established for most of the determinants measured in the marine environmental programmes for both monitoring and research purposes. The EU funded Quasimeme project proved that laboratories which followed on a regular basis the learning programmes and the laboratory testing schemes improved the quality of their data. The information exchange encouraged by this scheme and the opportunity to verify the laboratory performance was clearly of significant value to those who participated. The advantage of this initial project was that the studies were centrally financed. However, this approach only enabled a limited number of institutes to benefit from this support. After the end of the EU funding in 1995, the QUASIMEME scheme continued on subscription basis. Now it is possible for any laboratory worldwide to participate.

The subscription scheme began in 1996 and has included the existing matrix-determinant combinations from the EU QUASIMEME 92-96 programme with additional measurements as needed for national and international marine QA programmes. New determinants are added if there is a demand for them. In addition, workshops and development exercises with the framework of the scheme are organised.

The QUASIMEME project has been hosted from its inception in 1992 to April 1, 2005, by the Fisheries Research Institute in Aberdeen, United Kingdom. Wageningen University and Research (WUR) has taken over the responsibility for the QUASIMEME project on April 1, 2005. Three groups of WUR cooperate: the Centre for Water and Climate of Alterra, the Netherlands Institute for Fisheries Research (RIVO), and the Wageningen Evaluating Programmes for Analytical Laboratories the Soil Chemistry and Chemical Soil Quality group. Alterra acts as coordinator. In the periode between April 1, 2005 and April 1, 2006, the Fisheries Research Institute in Aberdeen cooperates so as to ensure a smooth transition of the scheme from the Aberdeen, United Kingdom to Wageningen, the Netherlands.