March 22, 1974

Executive Committee of the American Institute of Physics

Minutes of Meeting

Members Present: H. R. Crane – Chairman, J. A. Burton, W. W. Havens, Jr., Gerald Holton, G. A. Jeffrey, E. Leonard Jossem, H. William Koch

Absent: A. I. Mahan

Guest: Ralph A. Sawyer, Past Chairman

AIP Staff Present: H. William Koch, Director; Sidney Millman, acting for the Secretary; G. F. Gilbert, Treasurer; Lewis Slack, Assoc. Director for General Activities; Robert H. Marks, Associate Director for Publishing; Dorothy M. Lasky, Assistant to the Director; Mary M. Johnson, Assistant to the Secretary

Chairman Crane called the meeting to order at 1:30 p.m. and noted that we were honored to have Ralph Sawyer as our guest.

1. Minutes

  1. Executive Committee Meeting of December 17, 1973

    Millman’s invitation for comments on the format and contents of the minutes resulted in a brief discussion on the subject and a motion, which was passed unanimously:

    MOVED that future minutes do not attach the annual summary budget but include only as appendices such pages that have come up for appreciable discussion at the Executive Committee meeting, and indicate in a statement that complete budgetary information will be made available to any member of the Governing Board who requests it.

    Holton suggested some modification of the wording used in reporting on the discussion on the Physics History budget (bottom of Page 2) since there was not enough time to send to him the draft of the write-up on this subject. The agreed on amendations are as follows:

    Page 2, Item 2, "Presentation of Proposed AIP Budget for 1974", 3rd line from the bottom, change the words "reduce the drain on Institute resources" to "reduce the cost to the Institute."

    Also, on Page 3 add the following statement reporting on subsequent action on this subject: "On December 21, 1973, Koch sent a memorandum to members of the Executive Committee attaching the review of minutes, letters, and discussions held with the AIP Management Committee regarding the initial intentions that motivated the raising of the funds for the Physics History Program. His memorandum includes the following statement: ‘Based on that review, I have authorized the staff to proceed with their Physics History Program plans for 1974 that were approved in principle on 17 December 1973 and that were subject to my review.’"

    With these corrections the following motion was approved.

    MOVED that the December 17, 1973, minutes be approved as corrected.

  2. Executive Committee Meeting of February 6, 1974

    Marks suggested a rewording of some of the sentences in Item 3c (bottom of Page 3) including the title, to read as follows:

    Potential for an Index Journal Containing Abstracts from AIP and Society Journals

    "Marks introduced the proposal for an index journal containing abstracts. (A 3-page memorandum by Rita Lerner, dated January 31, 1974, was distributed and a copy is attached here as exhibit D.) The proposal is to photocompose all of the abstracts from AIP and Society journals and make them available as a quarterly index journal. Since we have all the data in our data base, it would be a by-produce of our journal production. At the end of the year there will be a subject index and an author index. We would also offer the microfilm update that goes with it. Marks is expecting about l00 member and 700 nonmember orders. "Physics Abstracts" only goes to about 1,000 libraries in the United States. The primary motivation is to produce a product that would be useful not only to librarians but to individual members. The member price will be $30.00 and the nonmember price $95.00.

    "Some questions were raised as to whether most libraries would pick this up. Marks pointed out that this product could easily be terminated if marketing conditions do not justify our optimism. It was pointed out that about half the promotion money would be spent before it was decided to turn off the project.

    "A motion was made and seconded to proceed with the publication of CURRENT PHYSICS INDEX. It was passed with one member (Jossem) dissenting. The motion reads:

    "MOVED that AIP proceed with the publication of CURRENT PHYSICS INDEX, as described."

    With this change the following motion to approve the minutes was passed:

    MOVED that the minutes of the February 6, 1974, meeting of the Executive Committee be approved as amended.

2. Reports of AIP Journal Editors

Marks indicated that reports from the editors of JOURNAL OF APPLIED PHYSICS, APPLIED PHYSICS LETTERS, THE REVIEW OF SCIENTIFIC INSTRUMENTS, and THE PHYSICS OF FLUIDS are available, but no report has yet been received from the editor of the JOURNAL OF MATHEMATICAL PHYSICS. These reports also go to the editorial boards of each journal and are discussed at their respective meetings.

THE PHYSICS OF FLUIDS is now being composed for the first time by Composition Technology. They have run into financial problems but now have sufficient capital to proceed.

3. Approval of Capital Equipment for Publication Division

Marks reported that the AIP in-house composition section has worked out very well. There is a bottleneck in that there is only one IBM composer which is used for so many things that another one is needed. The cost is of the order of $4,500 which would be amortized over two years. The following motion to authorize the purchase of a second composer machine was passed:

MOVED that the Publications Division be authorized to buy a second IBM composer machine.


Marks reported that this journal is still not in the black. The Soviets have increased the frequency and doubled the content so it is really a four-fold page increase. Since we have advance notice we are still in a position to increase the subscription price, and we are recommending $180.00 per year effective with the 1974-75 issues. The previous price was $75.00. A motion to that effect was approved as follows:

MOVED that the price of the SOVIET JOURNAL OF QUANTUM ELECTRONICS be increased from $75.00 to $180.00 per year effective with the 1974-75 issues.

Gilbert remarked that a notice is going out to agencies which will explain the reason for the increase. It was noted that the price per page is actually going down. A news item about this will also appear in PHYSICS TODAY.

5. Policy Roles of the AIP Executive Committee, the Fiscal Policy Committee and the Publishing Policy Committee

Burton distributed copies of a memorandum on this subject dated March 22, 1974, (copy attached as Exhibit A). He referred first to an earlier proposal by Millman to have the principal officers of the Member Societies meet about once a month to discuss Society operations and to review the services AIP performs for the Member Societies, and to recommend methods of improving those services (as reported in the “Summary of Deliberations of Group 2” November 16, 1973 – Attachment III to the Report of the Long-Range Planning Committee.) Burton also referred to the two recently established AIP committees on Fiscal Policy and Publishing Policy. It was Burton’s feeling that it is important for members of the Executive Committee to be involved in more of the discussions and not to have the discussions take place in some other committee and then be brought back to the Executive Committee for action, sometimes quick action, when they have not participated in the discussions.

Koch also agreed on the urgent need for greater coupling with the Society officers and with the Executive Committee. He has proposed the establishment of the two committees advisory to management mentioned by Burton, but if the Executive Committee would be willing to meet once a month it would be a much more desirable thing. Burton suggested further that, if there were these regularly scheduled Executive Committee meetings and a member could not attend, he could send a non-voting alternate. Crane pointed out that one gets better solutions to problems if there is one committee that meets often rather than several committees meeting infrequently.

Holton asked that we not forget the at-large constituency. It is important not to focus so much on issues which concern Member Societies only, but we should keep in mind also the issues which concern the whole body of physics.

Jossem also approved of Burton’s suggestion of having the Executive Committee more active and suggested that the mechanism for implementation be worked out after the proposal is approved, perhaps at the next meeting of the Executive Committee.

Crane noted that it was the consensus of the Executive Committee that it should play a greater role in policy matters and hold more meetings, with the mechanisms to be explored. A motion to that effect was made and seconded. Burton introduced the following amendment: that Member Societies not represented, and members-at-large of the Governing Board collectively, if not represented, be invited to send a non-voting representative if they wish to do so. This amendment was accepted and the following amended motion was passed:

MOVED that the Executive Committee take a more active role in AIP affairs and that it set up a mechanism for regular and more frequent meetings of the Executive Committee. Furthermore, the Executive Committee should invite Member Societies not represented and members-at-large of the Governing Board collectively, if not represented, to send a non-voting representative; the Society representative at the Society’s expense and member-at-large at AIP’s expense.

6. Backlog of Nonhonored Pages for the AIP Archival Journals

Burton distributed a one-page memorandum dated March 22, 1974 (copy attached as Exhibit B), calling attention to the fact that a substantial net income from the archival journals is used by AIP to support its general activities and that some of the journals have long backlogs of nonhonored pages. This is highlighted by two extreme examples: the JOURNAL OF MATHEMATICAL PHYSICS with a backlog of 22 months and a net income of $44,000, and the JOURNAL OF CHEMICAL PHYSICS with a backlog of almost a year and a budgeted net income of $255,000 for 1974. In the case of APS journals, Burton said, the net income is used to reduce the nonhonored page backlog. This led to some discussion of the need for using income from journals for the support of AIP general activities. It was felt that it would be highly desirable to introduce some consistency for nonhonored page backlogs and for the use of archival journal income (whether the journals are AIP-owned or Society-owned) for AIP general activities.

Marks recited the latest data on the status of nonhonored page backlogs and said it is the intention of the Publications Division to double the number of nonhonored pages to be published in JMP in 1974. The cost will be about $13,000. The following motion, which is intended to bring about the desirable result, was passed:

MOVED that an additional 300 nonhonored pages be published in the JOURNAL OF MATHEMATICAL PHYSICS in 1974.

7. Requests for Suggestions for the Program of the Next Assembly of Society Officers

Crane reported that after consulting with Jossem, Chairman of last year’s Assembly, he has asked L. W. Fredrick to serve as Chairman and R. S. Rivlin to serve as Secretary of the 1974 Assembly. Presumably, they will solicit suggestions for the agenda and the Executive Committee is invited to make suggestions.

8. Discussion of a Program for the Next Meeting of Corporate Associates

Koch expressed concern about the AIP Corporate Associates situation. The latest report on Corporate Associates dated March 21, 1974, as prepared and distributed by Dorothy Lasky, shows a further decline in membership (copy attached as Exhibit C). Koch said we would like to get input from the Executive Committee about how to strengthen Corporate Associate support to the Institute and what to do about the fall meeting.

Havens suggested that since a large part of the energy research money is going into the National Laboratories, we might be able to get some interesting speeches on the new programs in these Laboratories which the industrialists would be interested in hearing. The following names were brought up: R. G. Sachs of Argonne, D. J. Rose of MIT, and E. Q. Daddario, Director of the Office of Technology Assessment of the U.S. Congress.

9. Review of the Agenda for the Governing Board Meeting Scheduled for Later in the Evening and the Next Day

Koch discussed some of the highlights of the Governing Board agenda which had been distributed (copy attached as Exhibit D). Strassenburg is going to give a summary of the report of Von Simpson, fulfillment consultant. Koch will respond briefly and ask Gilbert to give a more detailed response to specific points raised in the report. Members expressed interest in having copies of the Von Simpson report.

Under "Publishing Matters" (Item No. 6 on the Governing Board agenda) Koch plans to report on the status of Soviet and IEE negotiations and ask the Governing Board to take action on two resolutions.

In the discussions with the Soviet negotiating team, Koch and Marks straightened them out on the relationship of AIP with Plenum Press. Another issue that was settled was the method of arriving at royalty payments. The most important principle established was that we are going to barter pages. The Russians photocopy or translate 70,000 of AIP and Society published pages and we translate 22,000 of their pages. They want to build up our 22,000 pages to as large a number as they can and they will do that by assigning translation rights to us or the Societies, including those for publications currently being translated and published by commercial publishers. This means we would be getting royalty payments from them. Royalty payments on the unbalance will be of the order of $3.90 per 1,000 pages per subscriber.

Koch also summarized the status of our negotiations with IEE which are being revived with some initiative by third parties behind the scenes.

A motion approving the two resolutions, as requested by Koch, was passed as follows:

MOVED we approve the following two resolutions:

  1. The principles of an agreement between the USSR and AIP as given in Attachment 5 are hereby approved for AIP and Society journals. Further, the inclusion of AIP journals in the execution of such an agreement beginning in subscription year 1973 is hereby authorized. The inclusion of Society journals is understood to be a matter of separate negotiations by AIP with the Societies involved. Such negotiations and requests for approval are hereby authorized.

  2. Informal discussions as proposed in the F. K. Willenbrock letter to L. Burchinal dated January 30, 1974, that will lead to a reopening of IEE-AIP negotiations are hereby encouraged. The Board will look to the development of recommendations for AIP action regarding those negotiations from an ad hoc committee consisting of Dr. E. Brady, Chairman, Dr. H. Richard Crane, and Dr. H. I. Fusfeld, based on the exploratory Brady discussions proposed by Willenbrock.

Comments were also expressed concerning the Annual Report that the Governing Board was going to be asked to approve for publication in PHYSICS TODAY. It was suggested that the discussion of the breaking of an agreement with IEE should be deleted. Several revisions were recommended on Page 9 about the various court suits. Koch indicated that Pages 8 and 9 will be revised.

In connection with Financial Matters (Item 9 of Governing Board agenda) Gilbert indicated that it will not be necessary to touch the Publishing Reserves. He also discussed the 1973 accumulated deficit arising from the expenditure of $50,000 for air conditioning improvements approved by the Executive Committee. AIP does not have funds set aside for capital equipment. This can perhaps be remedied in the future.

About the financial handling charge, Gilbert noted that in the past we have always had the Executive Committee make a recommendation to the Board. The AIP bylaws provide that Member Societies pay a financial handling charge not to exceed 1% of the monetary value of business done on behalf of Member Societies. This financial handling charge is fixed annually by the Governing Board, and was set at 5/8 of 1% for calendar year 1974. The staff recommends the same percentage for 1975. A motion to that effect was made and passed, as follows:

MOVED that the Executive Committee recommends the continuation of 5/8 of 1% as the financial handling charge for 1975.

Koch pointed to the Governing Board agenda item entitled "Discussion of the Future of AIP and the Societies" (No. 10) and explained that Frederick Seitz raised the question as to whether the report of the Long Range Planning Committee will be accepted by the Governing Board. After discussion the difference between "accepting" and "receiving" a report, it was felt that there will be very serious questions about accepting the report and all its recommendations. Accordingly, it was decided that it was best at this stage to receive it, and the following motion was passed:

MOVED that the Executive Committee recommends the report of the Long Range Planning Committee be received.

Crane pointed out that the Nominating Committee is going to propose that Sidney Millman be elected Acting Secretary for a certain period. In the meantime, we have a resolution passed by the Board a year ago regarding officers or employees of Member Societies being officers of AIP. He thought it would be reasonable to ask the Board to waive this provision in the case of an Acting Secretary. After discussing the advisability of asking the Governing Board to rescind the resolution, it was decided that it would be wiser to defer such action until the time the Acting Secretary becomes the permanent Secretary, if this occurs.

10. Next Meeting

The next meeting of the Executive Committee will be a breakfast meeting on Thursday, April 25, 1974, in the Vinson Room of the Sheraton Park Hotel, Washington, D.C., beginning at 7:30 a.m.

11. Bicentennial Celebration

Koch reported that AIP has received a letter from the New York City Bicentennial Corporation about a meeting to discuss the role of New York City’s scientific and medical communities in the commemoration of the 200th anniversary of American independence. This Executive Committee could say we are interested and he would have Charles Weiner express the AIP’s interest and get on the mailing list. We can inform our Societies how they can participate and be consistent with the national planning. The Executive Committee indicated its informal approval for such a course of action.

The meeting was adjourned at 4:45 p.m.