H. Frederick DyllaDirector's Matters

Executive Committee Long-range Planning Retreat
This coming weekend, AIP officers and managers are descending upon Santa Fe, NM for the AIP Executive Committee Long-range Planning Retreat. At the center of the meeting are discussions related to draft strategic plans from the Publishing Center and the Physics Resources Center (PRC).

Preparations for the retreat actually began at last September's Executive Committee retreat in Portland, Maine. Last year's meeting launched the effort to draft a three-year strategic plan for the Publishing Center and an extensive recruiting effort for a new Executive Director and CEO, which, to my good fortune, brought me here. Contemporaneously, PRC decided to engage in strategic planning as well. This decision was driven by the approaching executive change and the conviction that PRC management and programs would benefit from this effort. Strategic planning serves as a management tool and is intended to help us do a better job—to focus our energy, make sure everyone is working together toward the same goals, and to consider and adjust our direction in response to a changing environment.

Following different yet deliberate planning processes, the Publishing Center and PRC developed draft strategic plans, which were subsequently reviewed by AIP management, AIP’s advisory bodies, and, most recently, by Executive Committee members. The reviews led to revised drafts now before the Executive Committee again for further analysis.

Santa Fe discussions will focus on the following strategic considerations:

  1. Publishing - the technological transformation in publishing, and key directions for AIP as a provider of publishing services and as a publisher of journals;
  2. Services - AIP and Member Societies' role in shaping and influencing public policy and a view toward a new business model for Physics Today; and
  3. Physics Community-wide issue - how AIP and its Member Societies can capitalize on opportunities in energy and climate research.

I am looking forward to stimulating discussions involving the Executive Committee and some outside experts as well, to provide an external perspective. The discussions will help refine the plans. Final drafts will be submitted to the AIP Governing Board in November. Although living documents, the plans will provide a meaningful basis for management decisions, including resource allocations, as reflected in the 2008-2010 budgets.

Sincerely yours,


MMM—manuscripts more manageable
MMM Annual Conference Proceedings
On August 10, submission and peer review of full papers for the 52nd Annual Conference on Magnetism & Magnetic Materials (to be held November 5-9, 2007 in Tampa, FL) had a successful opening on the Conference's Peer X-Press (PXP) site. This is the fourth consecutive year the MMM Conference has used PXP. Prior to moving to PXP, submission, peer review, and handoff to AIP Production were entirely paper based. PXP eliminates extra clerical tasks. It also makes it easier to secure volunteer editors, because the workload is more manageable, and the handoff to production is seamless. AIP has made regular enhancements to the site since its inception four years ago, increasing system efficiency and ease of use. The result is a very satisfied MMM community.

JMP and POF Highlighting AIP journals
Each year, Marketing Services implements a dedicated marketing campaign for two of AIP's archival journals. In 2007, Marketing will highlight Journal of Mathematical Physics and Physics of Fluids. Each will see their primary promotional brochures fully updated, redesigned, and mailed to the research and library community in the fall. With this effort, we hope to raise awareness of the journals and reassert their position as key journals in their respective fields.

Physics match-making made better by SPS
SPS and Sigma Pi Sigma have recently partnered with two prominent organizations, MentorNet and Tutor.com, to enhance physics experiences for students across the country.

Dr. Ann Viano MentorNet is the award-winning nonprofit electronic mentoring network that addresses the retention and success of those in engineering, science and mathematics, particularly, but not exclusively, women and other underrepresented groups. SPS members can now go to http://www.mentornet.net/ and get paired with a mentor for 8 months regardless of which school they attend. Dr. Ann Viano, current President of Sigma Pi Sigma, has been a mentor for MentorNet for several years. It has been a positive experience for her. Dr. Viano is an Associate Professor of Physics at Rhodes College in Memphis, TN.

Andrew Coughlin SPS and Sigma Pi Sigma have also recently established a partnership with Tutor.com to get more on-line physics tutors. 2007 SPS intern Andrew Coughlin has been a Tutor.com tutor for over a year and speaks highly of this company, and of his tutoring experiences. Over 150 SPS members have already applied to become tutors. See the press release for more information, http://www.spsnational.org/partnerships/tutor.htm.

PCI: Security Standards Council BS&O protects credit card data in cyberspace
The new Payment Card Industry (PCI) Data Security Standard (DSS) outlines best practices for credit card data that is stored, processed, or transmitted. Credit card companies created the PCI DSS in effort to increase the security around cardholder data. All firms that transmit, process, or store credit card data are required to meet a 12-point list of requirements, including implementing strong encryption and user access controls. In August of 2007, AIP Business Systems and Operations successfully launched SOR and ASA as the first PCI compliant sites using Cybersource payment processing, through MACS. These sites allow for renewal of Membership Dues as well as new member applications in real time. ASA hosts their meetings on MACS as well. Other PCI compliant sites scheduled to be launched by BS&O in 2007 include AGU, NAGT, SPS, Physics Today, CISE, and AIP Articles on Demand. Our newest customer, NYAS will also launch as PCI compliant in early 2008.

Melville Employees College Park Employees Parting is such sweet sorrow
Both College Park and Melville staff said an "unofficial" farewell to summer with some cool summertime treats last week. The confectionary delights were brought to you by the University of Maryland Dairy and Ralph's Famous Italian Ices. Until next year!

We invite your feedback to this newsletter via email to aipmatters@aip.org.