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Executive Committee of the American Institute of Physics

Minutes of Meeting

June 14, 1960

Members Present: R. A. Sawyer, Chairman; W. R. Brode; J. W. Buchta; R. B. Lindsay

Absent: S. A. Goudsmit; W. W. Havens, Jr.; G. E. Uhlenbeck

AIP Staff Present: H. A. Barton; Dorothy M. Lasky; Wallace Waterfall; Mary M. Johnson (Elmer Hutchisson in hospital)

The Chairman called the meeting to order at 9:45 a.m.

1. Minutes

The minutes of the meeting of March 25, 1960, were approved as amended by adding the name of William R. Willets to the Committee of Society Secretaries and Treasurers on Page 2 of “AIP Committees and Appointed Representatives 1960.”

2. Financial Statement for First Quarter 1960

The Treasurer distributed copies of the financial statement for the first quarter (copy attached). He pointed out that, as authorized by the Executive Committee, all income from investments had been credited directly to the Building Reserve (Page 2A) and not included in general income as contemplated in the budget. An Operating Reserve was set up into which income from all Institute journals except PT is placed as indicated on Page 2A of the statement – Analysis of Operating Reserve. The staff interpreted the Executive Committee’s action to mean that overhead on Soviet translation journal grants should also be put in the Operating Reserve and that was done. Because of the change authorized since the 1960 budget was prepared, it is not obvious how the first quarter performance compares with budget but we are really about $3,600 better off than budget. The Treasurer pointed out that funds from the Operating Reserve can be used to offset journal or other operating deficits whenever the Committee wishes.

In answer to a question, the Treasurer said our net worth as of March 31, 1960, was our land, building, equipment, and the three first listed special purpose funds plus $86,779.96.

3. Solid State Physics Prize

Miss Lasky reported receipt of a proposal from Messrs. Robert K. Willardson of Consolidated Electrodynamics Corp. and Harvey L. Goering of Battelle Memorial Institute that the Institute administer an award in the field of solid state physics, funds to come from royalties on a series of books. The proposal suggested that the award be not less than $1,000, that the Division of Solid State Physics of APS select the awardee, and that the prize be awarded at some international conference. The Director had referred the proposal to Messrs. Weisskopf and Darrow, but Mr. Darrow felt that it would conflict with the Buckley Award. He also felt that it was not appropriate for a particular division of APS to be called upon to make final selection of the awardee, especially when the award would not be made at an APS function. Mr. Weisskopf was of more or less the same opinion. The Executive Committee seemed to be in agreement with the objections cited.

A question was raised as to whether this proposed award could be tied in with our Tate Memorial. It was also suggested that the originators of the proposal might be persuaded to broaden the basis or otherwise change the conditions for the award to be acceptable to AIP. The staff was instructed to convey these ideas to the originators and Messrs. Buchta and Brode agreed to contact Consolidated Electrodynamics and Battelle, respectively, to see if some mutually satisfactory arrangements can be worked out. Mr. Brode commented that the American Chemical Society would not accept money for a prize unless the Society selected the awardee.

4. Report on JAP Committee Meeting

Mr. Sawyer stated that the subject Committee met at the Institute on June 13 for the purpose of finding a new editor for JAP and discussing journal policy. Mr. Barton had attended the meeting, which was chaired by Hugh C. Wolfe, and he summarized the Committee’s deliberations as follows:

  1. The staff suggested that JAP was originally conceived as a strictly “applied” journal oriented strongly toward industrial applications of physics. It has become more of an archive journal and perhaps should return to what it was originally intended to be. The JAP Committee took no definite position on this point but agreed that JAP contents should be applied physics.

  2. Editorial management of JAP, with its increasing number of conference supplements, is requiring so much of an editor’s time that it is difficult to find someone willing to handle it on a part-time basis. The AIP staff suggested employing a managing editor to be housed at AIP headquarters, to be assisted by an editorial board of three distinguished, non-resident physicists who would meet frequently to help determine journal policy and content. The JAP Committee agreed to this proposal if a competent staff man could be found.

  3. It was conceded that the proposed management setup would cost more than the present editorial arrangement but the staff reported that JAP was growing in attractiveness, circulation, and number of pages and, with further expansion of the conference supplement idea, additional income should be expected. The JAP Committee looked favorably on the increasing use of JAP for conference proceedings provided the conference papers were well edited and were suitable material for JAP.

  4. Editor Krumhansl has suggested some procedures for fast publication of letters, possibly printing them separately by offset from typewriter composition. The staff does not favor this and prefers a suggestion made by Lancaster Press which will save about two weeks time by eliminating some proof stages. The JAP Committee questioned the need for ultra speed in JAP letters and pointed out the difficulties of limiting speedy publication only to really high priority material.

  5. The possibility of changing JAP to a semimonthly was also discussed but no conclusion reached.

After discussion of the report of the JAP Committee meeting, it was the consensus of the Executive Committee that the new JAP editorial management setup proposed by the staff sounded feasible if a suitable managing editor and editorial triumvirate could be found. However, Mr. Brode said he felt this matter was sufficiently important to warrant its being submitted to the Governing Board for approval and the following motion was made by Mr. Lindsay, seconded by Mr. Brode and passed without dissenting vote:

MOVED that the Executive Committee approve the proposed management plan for JAP and authorize the staff to proceed to find suitable personnel, with the understanding that they are to be approved by the Executive Committee and that both the plan and the personnel are then to be submitted to letter ballot of the Governing Board.

5. Letter from Harvey Brooks on Publication Problems

Mr. Barton read a letter from Mr. Brooks regarding “Solid State Letters” to be published by Pergamon Press, in which he requested that the Institute take a position on the subject of privately-published physics journals. During the discussion which followed it was pointed out that, while we recognize the importance of being alert where there is a need for new journals, we cannot possible meet all the demands which are directed toward us. It was agreed that a policy pronouncement for publication in PT would be desirable and Mr. Brode was asked to draft such a paper for circulation to the Executive Committee and Governing Board prior to publication.

6. Report on AAPT Commission for the Improvement of College Physics Courses

Mr. Buchta described the proposed scope of this Commission which will report to AAPT after two years. He said money for conferences was granted to AAPT, which asked Educational Services Incorporated to act as fiscal agent. The 17-man Commission which will direct the project includes ex officio the President and Vice President of AAPT and the Director of AIP.

7. Progress Reports

  1. Exhibit Survey

    The Secretary recalled that about a year ago the staff was authorized to spend up to $5,000 to investigate the desirability of sponsoring large scale exhibits. We have spent $1,000 for study and report by a man experienced in exhibits but we did not feel that his report was worth the money. It is the feeling of the Director and Secretary that we should work into larger exhibits slowly and for 1962 we expect to have three times the exhibit space we have had in the past. Considerable administrative time and effort are required to initiate new projects and we just do not have the manpower for such a project at the present time. Many have advised us that technical sessions would be necessary in connection with a successful exhibit and we do not believe it would be proper for AIP to sponsor such technical meetings as this is the province of the Member Societies. The Secretary mentioned the London exhibit conducted by the Institute of Physics, which is a science museum type of activity, and said he would like to look into it further. Mr. Lindsay commented that this is a subject for the Advisory Committee on AIP Education Program to consider. The Executive Committee expressed approval of the staff’s position.

The meeting adjourned for luncheon at 12:10 p.m. and reconvened at 12:30 p.m.

  1. Apparatus Directory

    Miss Lasky reported that there appears to be a demand for such a directory and the staff is giving it consideration. It is believed that such a directory would be both useful to physicists and profitable to AIP. It would contain physical descriptions and performance data along with company advertising. The Executive Committee indicated general approval of such an undertaking.

    Mr. Brode suggested that there might be a market for a similar directory of employment opportunities.

  2. Title Journal

    Mr. Barton explained plans for a proposed journal containing titles of all articles in journals published by AIP. Speed would be important and it is believed the title journal could be distributed a week or two after the appearance of the journals. It would start with limited coverage of articles and letters in all AIP and translated journals and could be enlarged to include meeting abstracts, book reviews, etc., and could eventually include world-wide journals. According to preliminary plans it would consist of three parts; the first being a classified list with titles, the second an actual reproduction of tables of contents, and the third part would be an author index. The proposed journal would be a semi-monthly publication which we believe we could sell for $4.00 per year with a circulation of 10,000.

    The Executive Committee expressed approval and authorized the staff to present a proposal to NSF for a grant to underwrite the study and subsidize production of a title journal for a period of three years.

  3. AIP Directory

    The Secretary reported that the Director had been interested in an all-physicists directory and he feels it could be produced relatively simply and revised frequently. The Secretary said it could be a simple one containing just names and addresses and could be supplemented by individual Society directories containing all the different types of information each one prefers. However, the Director envisions a directory which would replace the individual Member Society directories, but Society reaction to this has been mixed. We have not yet estimated the cost because we do not know what kind of information it would contain.

  4. John T. Tate Award

    The Secretary reported that letters sent to 363 people have resulted in 67 contributions to date amounting to $2,429, and we have four pledges adding $280, bringing the total to $2,709.00. Mr. Rohrer has promised a check from Lancaster Press for $1,000 (subsequently received) making a grant total of $3,709.00. The Institute has promised to match contributions which means there will be $7,418 in the fund toward our goal of $20,000.00. It was pointed out that the average contribution to date is about $40.00.

  5. Building Plans

    The Secretary recalled that he had previously our need for additional space. A possibility which had been discussed at that time was the Devoe & Reynolds building, located nearby. Our architect has examined it and reported it would not be suitable for our requirements and, furthermore, we have recently learned that the property is not for sale. The bank building on the northwest corner of 45th Street and United Nations Plaza is available and it adjoins our vacant lot but it is on leased ground which is not for sale. The Secretary said our best alternative appears to be expansion on the property we presently own and we have instructed our architect to prepare some plans on this basis, with cost estimates, for discussion at the time of our fall meetings.

  6. Meeting of Committee of Society Secretaries and Treasurers

    The Secretary reported that a meeting of the subject Committee was held on June 3 primarily for the purpose of describing details of our new punch card system for the Circulation and Accounting Departments. All Societies were represented although not all Committee members were present, and it appeared to be a very successful and worthwhile meeting. Dues billing arrangements for next year were agreed upon and we hope to have the new system in operation by the middle of October. The Secretary pointed out that the Institute is bearing the full cost of the changeover and surveys incident to it which amounts to about $30,000.00.

8. Corporate Associates

  1. Status Report

    Copies of a status report as of June 10 were distributed (copy attached) and there was a brief discussion of the conflicts which have arisen in the past between the Institute and Member Societies with respect to soliciting Corporate Associates. The Secretary said that, although there are very few cases where there is positive indication of conflict of interests, it is the policy of AIP to defer to the Member Societies whenever such a case does arise.

  2. Election of New Corporate Associates

    The Secretary reported that the following organizations had requested to become Corporate Associates of the Institute and, on motion duly made and carried, they were so elected:

    • Caterpillar Tractor Co.
    • Air Products, Inc.
    • Motorola Semiconductor Products Division
    • Carrier Corp. (for 1961)

  3. Replace Convair and General Atomic with General Dynamics Corp.

    Upon motion made, seconded and passed, Convair and General Atomic were dropped as Corporate Associates to be replaced by General Dynamics Corporation, the parent organization. Miss Lasky commented that we will realize larger dues from General Dynamics than we did from Convair and General Atomic combined.

9. Fall Meeting of Executive Committee, Governing Board and Corporate Associates

Mr. Barton reported that a meeting of the Advisory Committee on Corporate Associates was held recently and among the matters discussed was the theme for the next fall meeting of Corporate Associates, which will be combined with a meeting of the Board and Society officers on September 29 and 30, 1960, at Arden House. It was suggested that the morning session on Thursday, September 29, be devoted to a report of Institute activities and the afternoon session to a panel discussion on “Physics and Engineering in a Free Society” from the standpoint of industry, education and the public. Presentation of the second Karl T. Compton Gold Medal would be made late in the afternoon. Some suggested speakers were mentioned and more were proposed and noted.

Mr. Barton said Friday morning, September 30, would be reserved for an informal discussion meeting of AIP Board members and Society officers. The Governing Board and Executive Committee meetings would be held back at the Institute offices on Friday evening and Saturday, October 1, respectively.

Thursday evening at Arden House could be devoted to selecting and pointing up subjects for the general meeting on Friday morning. The Executive Committee approved of the proposed dates and program.

10. Appointments

  1. Reappointment of Dwight E. Gray as AIP Representative to Office of Critical Tables of NRC for 3-Year Term to June 30, 1963

    The Secretary reported that the above appointment was submitted to NRC and it was the consensus of the Committee that this appointment be approved.

  2. Nomination to USNC of International Federation for Documentation

    Upon motion made and passed, Elmer Hutchisson was appointed AIP representative to the US National Committee of the International Federation for Documentation (FID).

  3. Change in Title for Henry A. Barton

    The Secretary explained that Mr. Barton feels his title of Associate Director implies some line responsibility which he does not want to continue to assume and he has suggested that it be changed to Administrative Consultant. Also, he has requested two months’ leave of absence without pay between now and the end of the year which must have the approval of the Executive Committee. Upon motion made, seconded and passed, both of the above proposals were approved.

11. Registry of Scientists by Federal Government (H.R. 11916)

Mr. Barton reported it has been brought to our attention that a bill requiring the licensing of all scientists and engineers who work for institutions having contracts with the Government is being considered. He asked whether the Institute should take a position on it but no action was proposed.

12. Recommendation for Salary Survey of Academic Physicists

Miss Lasky reported an exchange of correspondence between the Director and Leonard Schiff of Stanford who has proposed that AIP collect information on faculty salaries through a questionnaire directed to physics department heads of all or a sample of colleges. The Secretary said the Director is willing to do it but has some questions about the propriety of the undertaking. After brief discussion, the Executive Committee agreed that it was something AIP should not de and suggested there were other means available to Mr. Schiff to get the information he desires.

The meeting adjourned at 2:05 p.m.