Along with the 2008 Membership renewal the CSEG Executive sent out a short membership survey in December. We needed to update the demographics and activities of our society. In total we received about 650 replies which equates to about a 33% participation rate. While most respondents answered all the questions there were a few that elected not to respond to some of the questions. As to the validity of the survey, while it certainly exceeds the participation levels of some of the local political preference polls, we of course would need to assume that our replies provide a legitimate cross sampling of the society’s membership. In some instances the results have been presented in an altered order from the survey itself so as to achieve some thematic continuity.
Question 1: My number of years of Geoscience experience directly in the petroleum and/or mining sector
Afull 48% admitted to either 25 or more years of experience in what was labeled as Geoscience experience. If we look for the second most populous segment we drop down to the 20-24 year grouping. The combined total is just short of the 2/3 threshold. Another way of looking at this distribution can be found in the following bar graph (Figure 2).
Question 2: My current employment/status would be categorized as
Those working on the Service side tallied 24.19%. The survey revealed that only 1.4% separated the two leading categories that being the aforementioned Service sector compared to those working for a Major Exploration and Development company. Lumping the latter in with their Mid-size and Junior cousins had the impact of pushing those on the E & P side to 45.5%. If we couple this with Consultants the number grows to slightly under 60%.
Question 3: My gender is
There wasn’t much of a surprise here as the ladies were outnumbered by a 4:1 ratio. One would expect this gap to close over the next decade.
Question 4: My age bracket would fall into
Our results confirm that our most populous age group was around in the 1960’s to witness the infamous flag debate in Ottawa. The next most common age group was just slightly younger and the third and fourth reside with those who could fondly recall the 1950’s.
Question 5: My Geoscience education includes
While not surprising, nearly 88% of our membership have some form of post secondary education. The largest sector obtained at least a Bachelor’s degree with almost a quarter achieving some post Bachelor studies.
In terms of where their studies were taken it is not surprising that 79% cite a Canadian university. In total 122 different universities were identified on the survey returns. Outside of the Canadian universities those from the United Kingdom came in second with the United States claiming third spot.
As to the Canadian universities U of Calgary finished first. It was followed by the University of Alberta, University of British Columbia and the University of Saskatchewan taking fourth spot.
Question 6: Number of CSEG DoodleTrain courses attended
Just less than 53% of our membership has taken a course during the first week in November under the DoodleTrain banner. In fact 7% take credit for attending more than 5 since the education week was introduced. While not listed here, there were a total of 90 new course suggestions submitted. These have been forwarded to the Doodletrain planning team for consideration in coming years.
Question 7: Number of CSEG Technical luncheons attended per year
Almost 75% of the membership attended at least one Technical luncheon during the course of the past year. Of the 10 luncheons hosted by the CSEG 20.75% acknowledged attending 5 or more of the talks. Part of this question enquired as to whether members felt that they were getting value for the $33.00 ticket price. The results were very one sided ( see Figure 11). As there is no profit built into the Technical Luncheon program the cost is largely reflective of what the venue charges the CSEG. It is very satisfying to see that the membership sees value, as quality has always been the first priority for the Luncheon Committee.
Question 8: I feel the $33 Luncheon fee provides good value
Question 9: In the last five years, I have attended the Annual Convention how many times
Of those responding 37.7% had attended all of the most recent conventions. Only 10.7% stated that they had not attended a Convention in the past 5 years. It should be noted that there was a contingent from the Retired category who had elected to discontinue attendance. In conjunction with the Convention attendance we enquired about those listening in on the Technical talks. Here almost 57% always attended the talks with an additional 31.5% sometimes sitting in.
Question 10: I attend some Technical Sessions at the Annual Convention
Question 11: Approximate number of CSEG Ski Spree, DoodleSpiel, and Doodlebug events attended
A total of 408 members had at one time attended at least one of our three flagship social events. The DoodleSpiel was the most popular with just less than 30% attending at least one of the events in Banff. The Doodlebug came in second claiming 19% participation. Bringing up the rear we find the perennially sold out Ski Spree. Certainly venue space limitations are behind the surprisingly low participation level of 16%.
The survey also invited free field comments. We were quite pleased to see a total of 136 members submit additional comments. Some of the more noteworthy ones would include:
I am thankful for the opportunity to vote in CSEG elections and do not want to lose that right.
That seems to be the prevailing sentiment from the Past Presidents Advisory Board to those attending the recent Brainstorming session. As a society we need candidates to run and the membership to vote. Anything below a 30% participation rate isn’t good enough.
Good lunchtime speakers & talks but would like to see more case histories. and
I’d like to see more case studies at the luncheons. Also, less to do with processing and more to do with interpretation.
We all would. The Technical Luncheon committee is always looking for them. They are very difficult to secure nonetheless, we will keep trying.
Individual renewal forms with personal details included. This comment or others with similar sentiments was submitted many times. The new Membership software the CSEG acquired will facilitate this for 2009 and beyond.
I have never been able to attend the Ski Spree as it fills up too fast. Perhaps a bigger venue would help.
As mentioned elsewhere there exist venue limitations at Fairmont. As the Resort is now under new ownership there is a feeling that this will translate into added capacity. We certainly hope so.
Although sporting events sponsored by CSEG are good for networking but does not add value to the education and discussion of technical topics.
You are no doubt correct. I have not overheard many geophysics discussions on the ski hill. As fellowship is one of our two mandates we need to support social activities as well. We have 30% of our membership who do not attend conventions. I also note 30% attend the DoodleSpiel. It should also be noted that the CSEG’s financial contribution is of a modest nature.
Services should be for members, not for profits. Remember this.
It should be noted that the CSEG has not always been profitable. Our annual budgeting in December normally looks for a small profit. To plan otherwise would be irresponsible. That being said I don’t feel we need to apologize for our success. My Grandfather once told me there is nothing wrong with making money. It is what you do with your money where the problems come in. Regardless, our profits are poured back into the membership.
Keep up the good work
Keep up the good work!
Keep up the good work Thank you (separate comments)
Thank you for noticing.
GST 5% = 2.50 50 + 2.50 = $52.50
The Federal Government’s welcomed GST reduction somewhat caught us napping. Once the forms had been set it was too much trouble to change. Some members caught the $.50 error and submitted the $52.50. For those that missed it please see new president Francois Aubin, I’m sure he will help you out.
The 2007 survey was started about 9 months ago. As it grew both Francois and I began to appreciate the work that goes into one of these. After many hours of compiling the results Francois turned to Jim Racette and me to assist in consolidating the results. This consumed an additional 5 hours in late February this year. It will be up to a new generation to undertake the next survey. I’m confident they will employ a more sophisticated process.