The biennial PSE conference series is organized by the European Joint Committee on Plasma and Ion Surface Engineering. With a continuously growing interest in the preceding PSE events, with more than 700 participants from all over the world in 2010, PSE is a well-established and leading forum in the field of plasma as well as ion- and particle-beam assisted surface modification and thin film technologies. PSE provides an opportunity to present recent progress in research and development and industrial applications. Its topics span a wide range from fundamentals such as e.g. process modelling and simulation of plasmas or thin film physics, through empirical studies which e.g. establish the relationships between process parameters and the structural and functional properties of modified surfaces and/or thin films, towards the application in industrial production. With numerous industrial exhibitors and an exceptionally large fraction of participants from industry (30% in 2010), a special feature of PSE is the intimate and vivid interaction between those being involved in basic research and those who have to meet the rapidly increasing demands in industrial production.