General Information and Policies on Congresses

The following information (posted on 1 February 2000) is subject to update and revision at any time. Any questions concerning this information should be directed to the Chair of the International Organizing Committee, Professor John Beardall (john.beardall@sci.monash.edu.au).

 

International Organizing Committee

The International Organizing Committee (IOC) for the International Phycological Congresses comprises some 60-65 members, largely (but not necessarily entirely) drawn from the membership of the International Phycological Society (IPS). Membership of the IOC is by invitation of the President of the IPS, the list being drawn up in consultation with the Chair of the IOC. Every effort is made to ensure a fair distribution of membership, while retaining a necessary core of experience. The officers of the IPS are ex officio members of the IOC, and may attend any of the IOC meetings. The IOC Chairman is appointed by the President of the IPS, with the approval of the IPS Executive Council. The Chairman normally serves for two congresses.

Through its members, the IOC is intended to represent as wide a cross-section of phycological sub-disciplines and countries as possible. Members are invited to attend two meetings: one, held at the end of the preceding Congress, which is intended to acquaint the members with the general nature of the IPS congresses and their responsibilities in the planning process, the other a one-day planning meeting, at which the general program and budget of the forthcoming congress are determined. Prior to this planning meeting, the IOC and the IPS membership at large are widely consulted with respect to the scientific program of the congress. Through this mechanism, all IOC members have equal opportunity for in-put, even though they may not be able to attend the planning meeting.

IOC Meetings and Items Considered at Each Congress

Two meetings of the International Organizing Committee are held in conjunction with each International Phycological Congress. The first is held at the end of the preceding Congress and is intended to:

  • acquaint the members with the general nature of the IPS congresses and their responsibilities in the planning process;
  • consider the structure of the just completed Congress and make any modifications considered necessary;
  • clarify any matters relating to the venue of the forthcoming Congress; and
  • decide on a location and date for the second meeting.

The second meeting is held 18 - 24 months later and is intended to:

  • reconfirm the Congress structure decided upon at the first meeting;
  • decide on topics and speakers for the plenary sessions and to make arrangements for extending invitations to nominated speakers;
  • decide on topics and conveners for the symposia and to make arrangements for
    extending invitations to nominated conveners;
  • consider any organizational matters relating to contributed papers sessions, poster sessions, workshops, societal meetings, etc;
  • discuss proposals of the Congress Conveners for pre- and post-Congress excursions and mid-Congress tours and decide which are to be offered;
  • discuss the preliminary budget proposed by the Congress Conveners in view of projected number of delegates and make any necessary modifications;
  • set registration fees for full delegates, student delegates and accompanying persons;
  • note the nature of financial and other support available to assist delegates;
  • set deadlines for Mailing of the First Circular; mailing of the Second Circular; Receipt of registration and other fees; Receipt of Abstracts; Refunds on cancellations;
  • discuss the social program and the program for accompanying persons proposed by the Congress Conveners;
  • consider any other matters raised by the Congress conveners or by members of the IOC.

Prior to the second meeting, the IOC and the IPS membership at large are widely consulted with respect to the scientific program for the Congress. Through this mechanism, all IOC members have equal opportunity for in-put, even though they may not be able to attend the second meeting.

General Policies Pertaining to International Phycological Congresses

Policy - Budgetary responsibilities (Approved by the IPS Executive Council, July 1998)

  • The International Phycological Society (IPS) is the ultimate sponsor of International Phycological Congresses (IPCs). The IPS expects the IPCs to be financially self-sufficient, operating within a balanced budget; however, the IPS also covers Congress deficits that have arisen beyond the control of the Local Organizing Committee (LOC), and sometimes provides grants to a Congress for specific purposes. Any excess income goes to a special IPS Congress Fund, the interest of which is used to bring registrants to future IPCs.
  • The International Organizing Committee (IOC) of each IPC at its second meeting discusses and approves a Congress budget proposed by the LOC and makes any necessary modifications; sets registration fees for full delegates, student delegates and accompanying persons; notes the nature of financial and other support available to assist delegates.
  • The IOC Chairman advises the Congress Conveners on matters relating to the Congress budget, and liaises with the IPC President on any matters of concern relating to Congress finances.
  • The Local Organizing Committee chaired by the Convener(s) is responsible for drafting the preliminary Congress budget in consultation with the IOC Chair. The LOC should report to the IOC Chairman at 6-monthly intervals following the second meeting of the IOC. The reports should include a statement of any matters pertaining to the Congress budget or finances and details of income and expenditure for the preceding 6-month period.
  • If the LOC wishes to appoint a professional agency to deal with any aspects of IPC organization, normally this should be foreshadowed in the initial bid to host the Congress. Any proposal to appoint a professional agency must be approved by the IOC (or IOC Chairman after consultation with the IPS President) and all associated costs must be included in the Congress Budget.
  • The LOC is an instrument of the IPS, subject to the direction and guidance of the IOC via the IOC Chairman, and all of its actions are undertaken on behalf of the IPS. Accordingly, any excess income from an IPC, including donations, is the property of the IPS, regardless of the budgeting strategies employed to finance the meeting. Any strategies developed by the LOC that might affect the interest of IPS in its Congresses must first be approved by the IOC Chairman in consultation with the IPS Executive Council.

Congress Budgets

All financial transactions made by, or on behalf of, an IPC are regarded as integral parts of the IPC Budget. Any IPC sponsorship obtained by the LOC or IOC forms part of the Congress Budget and as such belongs to the IPS.

Pre- and Post-Congress Excursions should be self-financing. All costs should be paid by participants.

Budgets are to be prepared and all transactions carried out in the currency of the host country, unless otherwise approved by the IOC Chair (in consultation with the IPC President). Discrepancies between amounts received from, and paid back to, the IPS Treasury or the IPC Fund account that result from currency exchange fluctuations are to be reconciled against excess income by the IOC Chair and IPS Treasurer.

POLICY – International Phycological Congress Fund (approved by the IPS Executive Council, April 1998)

Background

The IPS Congress Fund (= IPC Fund) was established by the IPS Council in 1988 after the Melbourne Congress for the purpose of providing assistance to colleagues to attend Congresses who would not otherwise be able to do so. The fund initially included the excess income realized from IPC-1, IPC-2 and IPC-3, and the fund has been held in an Australian bank since its inception. The Council of the day set the policy that any excess income from Congresses be added to the principal of the fund and that only interest generated by this principal be used to assist colleagues. This policy is still in effect.

Guidelines for use of the IPC Fund Account to support delegates attending IPCs (approved by the IPS Executive Council, April 1998)

  • The present International Phycological Congress Fund continues to operate with a policy that any excess income from Congresses be added to the principal and that the accumulated principal remain intact. Annual statements of income and expenditure showing should continue to be provided to the Treasurer by one of the 3 signatories to the (Australian) account (M. Clayton, B. Woelkerling, T. Entwisle).
  • Interest earned on the IPC Fund account principal should be used to assist colleagues in attending Congress by providing funds to cover the costs of registration and/or accommodation, but not to cover the costs of travel. Necessary expenses of the IOC Chairman should be met from the budget/fund-raising activities of the appropriate Congress.
  • Travel support for plenary or other special invited speakers should either be paid from the main IPS Treasury or be built into the budget/fund-raising activities for each Congress. In general, it should NOT be necessary to offer financial support to symposium conveners.
  • Any loans to help set up Congresses should be made from the main IPS Treasury and not from the Congress Fund (cf. decision of IPS Executive Council meeting in Leiden 1997).
  • Interest generated on the IPC Fund account shall be used to assist phycologists in attending Congresses by providing funds to cover the costs of registration and/or accommodation, but not to cover the costs of travel. The total amount of funds to be available for this purpose will be determined by the Treasurer of the IPS following consultation with at least one of the signatories to the IPC Fund account.
  • Eligibility: to be eligible to receive support, one of the following criteria should be met:
    1. postgraduate student in year 2-4 of Ph.D.
    2. academic within 3 years of their first appointment.
    3. delegate from a country with severe economic difficulties--e.g. very weak local currency, or very difficult to obtain foreign currency, or other criteria essentially demonstrating economic disadvantage.
  • For each Congress, a Selection Committee, including both sexes, should be established to receive and evaluate applications for financial support. A prerequisite for receiving support is that a person should present a paper or a poster. The composition of the Selection Committee should be recommended by the IPC Convener, approved by the IOC Chairman, and ratified by the IPS President. Proposed composition of the Committee (3 persons) = Convener of the IPC in question who will also chair the committee + two members of the IOC from different countries). The Selection Committee is responsible for devising a simple 1-page application form to be sent out to all persons requesting financial assistance.
  • Procedure for applications for financial assistance from the IPC Fund:
    1. Applications for financial assistance from the IPC Fund to be advertised in the first IPC circular and formally requested in detail with deadlines for applications in the second circular.
    2. At the time of distributing the second circular, and well before selecting the successful applicants, the chair of the selection committee (usually the IPC Convener) should ascertain the total funds available for supporting delegates. (Amount to be agreed by the IPS Treasurer in consultation with the signatories to the account).
    3. The deadline for applications for financial assistance IPC Fund should be at least 3 months before the deadline for early registration so that successful applicants can be notified in time to arrange their registration.
    4. Applications must be in English.
    5. ALL applicants must submit to the Selection Committee a) a brief curriculum vitae (maximum 2 A4 pages) plus a complete list of publications and previous conference presentations, b) a completed application form including a short paragraph stating what benefit they expect to gain from attending the conference, c) official verification of their student or employment status (if relevant) signed by the Head of their Department or Institute. Late applications will not be accepted.
    6. Economic considerations will be subject to appraisal at the time, by the selection committee in consultation with the IOC Chairman and the IPS President.
    7. When the Selection Committee has finalized the names and categories of proposed recipients, the list should be sent to the IOC Chairman and IPS President for ratification before the recipients are notified.

Adoption of these guidelines will ensure that for future Congresses there will be funds available to assist colleagues in attending Congresses and share their research results with the international phycological community.

POLICY — Meetings of other societies in conjunction with an International Phycological Congress (approved by the IPS Executive Council, July 1998)

Background

Societies other than the International Phycological Society (IPS) have met in conjunction with most IPCs to date. The Phycological Society of America has met in conjunction with IPC-1, 4 and 6, the Australasian Society for Phycology and Aquatic Botany with IPC-3, and the Chinese Phycological Society with IPC-5.

Policy

  • IPCs are meetings of the IPS and thus under the control of the IPS.
  • Other Societies wishing to meet in conjunction with the IPC should submit a written request to the IPS President at least six months before the second meeting of the IOC. The request should include a complete list of events the Society wishes to hold during the IPC (see item 4). The IPS President should consult the IOC Chairman and IPC Convener and seek approval from the IPS Executive Council. The decision should be finalized prior to the second meeting of the IOC. The Society in question must agree to pay any costs associated with their events or meetings held during the IPC.
  • The Opening and Closing Ceremonies of the IPC should be used for matters concerning the International Phycological Congress and the International Phycological Society including speeches and announcements by the IOC Chairman, the IPC Convener, the IPS President, and Institutional or civic dignitaries. To ensure that the focus of attention remains on the IPS, no speeches should be made on behalf of other societies at the Opening and Closing Ceremonies. (Note the phrase ‘on behalf of’. This stricture on participation in the Opening and Closing ceremonies should not prevent the host country’s phycological society, if there is one, from extending some brief remarks of welcome to the IPS at the Opening Ceremony, as long as it does not discuss its own affairs.)
  • Societies meeting in conjunction with the IPC are encouraged to sponsor prizes and to organize events such as a symposium session, a business meeting and/or a dinner. Societies will be responsible for choosing speakers and arranging the program of events held in their name. The timing of events must fit in with the IPC Program without displacing existing program arrangements. Officers of the guest Society should approach the IPC Convener directly to make arrangements for scheduling Society events during an IPC.
  • Abstracts for papers and posters given at IPCs will be published as a supplement to Phycologia, and the Editor of Phycologia will share in and oversee the preparation of the supplement.