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Governing Board of the American Institute of Physics

Minutes of Meeting

March 20, 1971

1. The Governing Board of the American Institute of Physics met in the offices of the Institute, 335 East 45 Street, New York, N.Y. 10017.

Members Present: Ralph A. Sawyer – Chairman, Arnold B. Arons, Stanley S. Ballard, George B. Benedek, Bruce H. Billings, Joseph A. Burton, Harold A. Daw, Irving E. Dayton, Baily L. Donnally, Laurence Frederick, W.W. Havens, Jr., Gerald Holton, G.A. Jeffrey, Wilbur V. Johnson, H. William Koch, R. Bruce Lindsay, Robert N. Little, A.I. Mahan, Aden B. Meinel, A.L Schalow, Martin Schwarzschild, Mary E. Warga, Wallace Waterfall

Guests: H. Richard Crane, W. Lewis Hyde

Absent: Robert T. Beyer, J.E. Goldman, S.A. Goudsmit, H. Markovitz, Frederick Seitz, W.P. Slichter, Peter R. Weiss

AIP Staff Present: H. William Koch, Wallace Waterfall, G.F. Gilbert, Lewis Slack, Robert H. Marks, Dorothy M. Lasky, Mary M. Johnson

Chairman Sawyer called the meeting to order at 10:00 a.m. and introduced the new Board members, Messrs. Benedek, Meinel, Dayton, Johnson, and Schwarzschild.

2. Minutes

Upon motion made, seconded, and passed without dissent, the minutes of the Governing Board meeting of October 7, 1970, were approved as distributed.

3. Report of Annual Meeting

Chairman Sawyer reported that the Annual Meeting of the Institute had been held just preceding this Governing Board meeting. The Secretary said that proxies representing all of the Member Societies were present and that the election of Governing Board members as reported by the Societies had been noted and recorded. Copies of the minutes of the Annual Meeting will be distributed to Secretaries of all Member Societies.

4. Report of the Chairman

Chairman Sawyer reviewed briefly the various actions taken by the Executive Committee since the last meeting of the Governing Board. He said that copies of the minutes of the meetings would be furnished on request to new Board members who had not received them. He also said that actions taken by the Executive Committee at its meeting on the preceding day would be discussed during the current Board meeting.

5. Annual Report for 1970

The Director referred to his letter of March 12 to all members of the Governing Board to which was attached a draft of the proposed annual report of the Board to AIP Members. He invited comments of Board members and said that the draft would be revised on the basis of comments received. Financial figures for the calendar year 1970 will be added when they have been received. After brief discussion the following motion was made, seconded, and passed without dissent:

MOVED that the report of the Director, revised in accordance with discussion, be adopted as the report of the Board to AIP Members and published in PHYSICS TODAY.

(a copy of the revised report is attached to the official copy of these minutes.)

The Director said he had also sent along with his letter of March 12 the draft of a paper entitled "On Physics and the Employment of Physicists in 1970" which he intended to publish in the June issue of PHYSICS TODAY along with the annual report. He invited and received from Board members a number of comments on the paper. The consensus appeared to be that it would be wise to take a somewhat more negative attitude toward the future prospects for physicists. The Director said that he would revise the paper accordingly.

The Director explained that the June issue of PHYSICS TODAY would also contain a pictorial history of AIP with a brief introduction by Henry A. Barton by way of featuring AIP's 40th anniversary. It is planned to reprint the three PT items described and distribute these reprints to all members of AIP along with a copy of the anniversary edition of the "Purpose, Organization, Programs” booklet.

6. Request of American Geophysical Union to Become Affiliated Society

The Director read portions of a letter dated January 28, 197 1, from the Executive Director of AGU in which he said that the AGU council had authorized him to apply for affiliated membership in AIP. AGU has approximately 10, 000 members and about half of these are physicists. The Director said that the Executive Committee had considered the matter and recommended that the Governing Board take favorable action on the application. The following motion was then made, seconded, and passed without dissent:

MOVED that the American Geophysical Union be accepted as an Affiliated Society of AIP.

7. Financial Matters

  1. Financial Report for 1970 and Concerns for 1971
  2. The Treasurer distributed a written report which is attached as Exhibit A. The Treasurer emphasized that the audit for the 1970 calendar year has not yet been completed and that his 1970 figures should be considered as estimates only. He called attention to the high net income from AIP archive journals in 1970 compared to 1969 and said this had been brought about by forcing a high page charge honoring rate during the last quarter of the year by not publishing unhonored papers. He also called attention to the fact that PHYSICS TODAY showed a substantial loss in 1970 because of the great reduction in advertising. (Copies of the audited statement for calendar year 1970 were subsequently sent to Governing Board members and a copy is attached to the official minutes and is being distributed to others who receive these minutes.)

    Koch said that holding up the publication of unhonored pages during late 1970 had resulted in a carryover of a substantial number of papers to 197 1. Authors are being advised that the delay in publishing unhonored papers may be from two months to nine months. The staff plans to review the situation at the June meeting of the Executive Committee with the hope that it may be possible to increase the unhonored page budgets for some of the journals.

  3. Financial Handling Charge for 1972
  4. The Treasurer reported that, since the concept of a financial handling charge was adopted, the Governing Board has set the charge at ½ of 1% each year. This has resulted in the Member Societies bearing approximately 30% of the cost of AIP's accounting operation. At the December 11, 1970, meeting of the Executive Committee the Treasurer pointed out that accounting costs were increasing during the next few years because of the new computerized operation. If the Societies are to continue to bear approximately 30% of the cost of accounting the charge should be increased to 5/8 of 1%. The Secretary said that the matter had been considered by the Executive Committee on the preceding day and the Executive Committee had recommended that 5/8 of 1% be adopted. The following motion was then made, seconded, and passed without dissent:

    MOVED that the financial handling charge for calendar year 1972 be set at five-eighths of one percent (.625%)

  5. Accounting Changeover
  6. The Treasurer said that on March 1 he had advised officers of Member Societies that the accounting changeover had been completed and computerized monthly statements for January and February were distributed. The first quarterly statement should be ready for distribution early in May and this will be more meaningful because it will contain pro-rated charges for Editorial Mechanics, subscription fulfillment, etc. Following the completion of the 1970 audit and the distribution of the statement for the first quarter of 197 1, the NCR system will be discontinued and thereafter all financial statements will be prepared by the computer.

    Both Dayton and Burton questioned the utility of the monthly statements to Societies since they do not contain the pro-rated charges. Gilbert said the Institute would be glad to eliminate them. It appeared to be the consensus that the monthly statements should be continued until after the second quarter with the idea that a survey of Societies should then be made to see what reports are really useful to them.

  7. AIP Tax Situation
  8. The Secretary reported that for several years he and the Treasurer had been attending an annual tax conference in Washington to discuss tax problems of non-profit organizations. The tax conference held in February 1970 was especially interesting because we received a lot of information about the newly enacted Tax Reform Act of 1969. The Act was then very new and we were led to expect much more definite information at the tax conference in February 197 1. Approximately 1,000 attended the 197 1 conference and the majority of these were from foundations which expected to be hardest hit by the Act of 1969. We learned that IRS has not yet issued very many regulations which affect organizations such as AIP and the Member Societies. We should be on the lookout for regulations from IRS defining what they consider as "unrelated" business. We know that advertising will be considered unrelated but the method of accounting to determine tax liability has not yet been defined by IRS. We were relieved to hear an IRS official say that they had reached a decision that non-member subscription income to a journal would not be considered as unrelated. The Secretary said that AIP would try to keep abreast of IRS regulations and would advise the Societies about them as they are received. Dayton requested that
    Member Societies be advised of such tax conferences in case they might wish to send representatives.

8. Publishing and Information Matters

  1. Summary of Trends and Negotiations
  2. The Director gave a brief summary of current trends and AIP negotiations on information matters. AIP expenditures of NSF funds on the Information Program now total more than $4,600,000. Various products have been developed which we propose to start merchandising actively beginning in January 1972. The SPIN tape is already being used experimentally by several potential customers and we expect to work out licensing arrangements with some of these during the current year. Some of the NISPA products were exhibited at the recent APS-AAPT meeting and the Executive Committee has given its approval to the program in principle with the understanding that details and prices will be presented to the Committee for approval at the June meeting.

    We have been negotiating with the British Institution of Electrical Engineers about utilizing our SPIN tape in the production of their PHYSICS ABSTRACTS. Such cooperation will avoid duplication of effort in keyboarding material and should result in lower costs to all concerned.

  3. Membership in ICSU Board of Abstracting and Indexing Services
  4. The Director said it would be advantageous for AIP to have membership in the ICSU Board of Abstracting and Indexing Services. He said that associate membership would cost $1,000 per year and full membership $3,000 per year. He asked authorization to apply for whatever class of membership is available, with the understanding that it will be chargeable to the NSF grant, and by motion, seconded and passed without dissent, the authorization was granted.

  5. NISPA Products and Prices
  6. Marks described the Current Microfilms and PAPA as he had done at the Executive Committee meeting on the preceding day (see Item 3 of the minutes of the Executive Committee meeting of March 19, 1971). It is planned to include Society journals as well as AIP journals in both of these products and the Societies will soon receive a formal request for their approval. The whole program is being worked out so that there should be no possibility of any financial loss to the Societies. In fact, it is expected that both AIP and the Societies will gain in the long run from the sale of these new products.

  7. Experience with Conference Proceedings Series
  8. Marks exhibited the first volume of the Conference Proceedings Series and said that two additional conferences had been signed up for the series, the Magnetism Conference and the Particles and Fields Conference. Negotiations are under way for two others. The Series is so new that we do not yet have any idea about the market for the volumes but we expect it to be substantial.

  9. Journal of Chemical and Physical Reference Data
  10. Marks said that the National Bureau of Standards had proposed that the American Chemical Society and AIP jointly sponsor a new periodical to be called the "Journal of Chemical and Physical Reference Data.” A review board consisting of three members appointed by AIP, three appointed by ACS, and three by NBS would select the data to be published. In preliminary negotiations with NBS and ACS it has been agreed that (1) NBS will provide camera-ready copy of material selected for publication, (2) AIP will handle editorial mechanics and production, (3) ACS will promote and sell to non-members, and (4) both AIP and ACS will sell to their respective members. Plans call for publication of approximately 1,200 pages the first year as a quarterly. Proposed prices are $18 for members and $48 for non-members. NBS would receive 20% of gross subscription income and AIP and ACS would split net income. With 1,000 member and 1,000 non-member subscriptions, net income should approximate $20,000.

    The Secretary said that the Executive Committee, at its meeting yesterday, had authorized the staff to continue discussions with ACS and NBS to develop and agreement or a contract which would be presented to the Executive Committee for consideration at its June meeting.

  11. Appointment of R.H. Marks as a Corporate Officer of AIP
  12. The Director indicated that there are at present four corporate officers of the Institute: H. William Koch, the Director; Wallace Waterfall, the Secretary; Gerald F. Gilbert, the Treasurer, and Lewis Slack, the Associate Director for General Activities. Because of Mr. Marks' important role in our publishing and information activities, the Director said that he would like to have him designated as a corporate officer of the Institute. The following motion was then made, seconded, and passed without dissent:

    MOVED that R.H. Marks, Associate Director for Publishing and Information Activities, be designated a corporate officer of the American Institute of Physics Incorporated.

9. Celebration of 40th Anniversary of AIP

The Director distributed a written statement (attached as exhibit B) describing plans for the celebration of AIP’s 40th anniversary.

In response to a question, Lasky indicated that a specific date for the fall meeting of Governing Board, Society officers, and Corporate Associates had not yet been fixed. We are consulting Societies about their meeting plans and there will be a meeting of the Corporate Associates Advisory Committee in a few weeks and soon thereafter we should have firm dates.

Ballard pointed out that this year is also the 50th anniversary of the founding of Sigma Pi Sigma and it would be appropriate if that were given some notice in the AIP 40th anniversary celebration

The meeting recessed for luncheon at 12:08 p.m. and reconvened at 1:50 p.m.

10. Report of Society-Member Programs Review Committee

Copies of the written report of the Committee were distributed (attached as Exhibit C) and W. Lewis Hyde, Chairman of the Committee, proceeded to discuss it. He recalled that, at the Assembly of Society Officers last fall, the Director had pointed out how financially burdensome the Society-member programs were to the Institute and he had suggested the possibility of shifting some part of this burden to the Member Societies. The Review Committee, created by the Governing Board with representatives from each of the seven Member Societies, was established to develop a response to the Director's proposal. The Review Committee’s report supports the program of the Education and Manpower Division with some change in emphasis and also supports the present Public Relations program. The Member Societies have not yet been asked to share any of the expense for the History program but, if they were, it is the opinion of the Review Committee that they would be reluctant to do so.

The Director pointed out that the Review Committee had been created by the Board and that its report had now been properly presented to the Board for such action as the Board considered appropriate. He said that, with the permission of the Executive Committee, copies of a preliminary draft of the Review Committee's report had been distributed to members of the Advisory Committee on the History and Philosophy of Physics for consideration at its meeting on March 11, 1971. The Advisory Committee had reacted strongly to the comments of the Review Committee about the Physics History program and the Director said he would like to have Gerald Holton, Chairman of the Advisory Committee, speak on the subject.

  1. "Holton referred to and read from the document 'Response to the Report of the Society-Member Programs Review Committee' distributed at the start of this meeting to support Agenda Item No. 10. He said that the report was initially prepared by the AIP History Division staff, was discussed with Dr. Hyde, and has been endorsed by the Advisory Committee of the History Division; and that, in his opinion, it disproves each of the assumptions and the relevant factual statements in the Review Committee's references to the History Division."
  2. We wish to be on record as opposing the recommendations of the ad hoc Review Committee to shift present support to other activities and to move the Center to another location.
  3. We suggest Dr. Koch reassert his own interest in and commitment to the work of this Division of AIP.

In addition, Dr. Holton was directed to add oral comments at the Governing Board meeting on 20 March 1971.

Holton added that the Advisory Committee was not averse to reducing the expenses of the program fi that appeared to be absolutely necessary but the Advisory Committee was unalterably opposed to moving the program to some other location outside of AIP headquarters.

Koch indicated he agreed that moving the History program elsewhere was not feasible. He pointed out that the presentation he made at last fall’s Assembly which led to the establishment of the Review Committee was based on the fact that funds are no longer available from AIP income sources to provide the complete support for continually expanding Society-member programs. Of the three programs examined by the Review Committee the History program appeared to have the lowest priority. Those physicists who know about the History program are enthusiastic about it but too few know. Koch also said that, since last fall's Assembly, several things have happened which will reduce the costs of the Society-member programs. Arnold Strassenburg has resigned as Director of the Education and Manpower Division and about four of his staff members are leaving to go elsewhere. E. H. Kone has also resigned as Director of the Public Relations Division. With these developments it appears that the budgeted funds will be adequate for the three Society-member programs through 197 1 without further cutting. However, long-range planning is necessary and other sources of income than AIP now has must be found if the programs are to continue their development.

It was then suggested that the Society-Member Programs Review Committee had completed its work and could be dismissed but there was objection to this. Dayton and others felt that the Review Committee should have an opportunity to respond to the criticism of its recommendations and that members of both the Review Committee and the Governign Board should have further discussions of the various problems involved with their associates and with members of the governing bodies of the Member Societies. Donnally said that the future of the AIP Education program was of very great interest to AAPT and that needed more consideration.

11. Report of COMPAS

Slack said that Fred Seitz, the new Chairman of COMPAS, was unable to be present and he was reporting in his stead. Copies of various documents initiated or prepared by COMPAS have been distributed to Board members during the last year. At the April 1970 APS meeting a COMPAS Newsletter was distributed which dealt with some of the critical issues facing the physics community. COMPAS is now studying the nature of graduate education in physics and approximately 50 physics department chairmen were invited to a session at The Rockefeller University to explore this subject preliminary to a special session arranged for the New York meetings of APS-AAPT. COMPAS is looking for other programs which it might sponsor and invites suggestions.

12. Information for Physics Department Chairman on Manpower Problems

Slack said there had been discussion among APS and AAPT officers about AIP taking the lead in arranging conferences for the discussion of the production of physics Ph.D.’s He said AIP is willing to undertake such a program if it is really wanted.

Benedek said he believe the physics community really needed some wise leadership in attacking this problem and he hoped that COMPAS would provide such leadership.

Dayton recommended that, fi such meetings are held, they should not be limited just to the largest 50 Ph. D.-granting institutions but include institutions which grant only Masters Degrees.

Crane agreed that open forums on the subject may be desirable but the problems of larger institutions are much different from those of smaller institutions and communication between the groups would be difficult.

Arons said he had been very much interested in the discussion and he made the following statement:

"The History of Physics program is deeply connected to ideas and materials that make it possible for us to understand the nature and growth of science, its interaction with society, and the way in which society, in return, molds and influences science. At this critical time in the community of Physics, there is a pressing need to understand ourselves and our relation to society and to convey this understanding lucidly and compellingly to non-scientists. I suggest that this need is far more pressing than other immediate aspects of professional self-protection, far more pressing, for example, than insuring publication of all the junk that is insistently submitted as "original research.”  I suggest that we need to muster the courage and integrity to examine our own priorities, that the priorities suggested to us by the Review Committee were specious and, in the longer view of enlightened self-interest, dangerous. We should re-examine our priorities not elsewhere but right here within the Governing Board that represents the confluence of the various segments of the physics community."

There appeared to be no consensus and no action was taken.

13. Change in By-Laws of the Society of Physics Students

Slack reported that, at the Governing Board meeting last October, some SPS by-law changes were approved contingent on their approval by the SPS chapters. Such approval has now been obtained and a copy of the revised by-laws is attached to the official copy of these minutes as a matter of record.

14. Appointment of Committees and Representatives for the Coming Year

Copies of a proposed list of committees and representatives for the coming year were distributed to Board members. There were no comments and the following motion was made, seconded, and carried without dissent:

MOVED that the list (attached as Exhibit D)be approved and that the Chairman and Director be authorized to make appointments accordingly with the understanding that such changes as may be necessary may be made by the Chairman and Director.

15. Report of Nominating Committee and Election

At the request of Arons, Chairman of the Nominating Committee, the Secretary read the written report of the Committee which is attached to these minutes as Exhibit E.

Chairman Sawyer called for other nominations. There being none, the following motion was made, seconded, and passed without dissent:

MOVED that nominations be closed and that the slate presented by the Nominating Committee be declared elected.

The Nominating Committee also recommended that the Executive Committee consider the desirability of expanding the number of members of the Executive Committee from the present six members to a larger number which would include at least one representative from each of the Member Societies. It was moved, seconded, and passed without dissent that the Executive Committee should give consideration to this recommendation.

The Secretary then read a resolution regarding Ralph A. Sawyer which is attached as Exhibit F. There followed applause and the resolution was passed by acclamation.

16. Next Meeting of the Executive Committee

After brief discussion, the next meeting of the Executive Committee was scheduled for June 14, 1971, at the offices of the Institute.

The meeting was adjourned at 3:20 p.m.