I’m honored to take office as CSEG President and to have the privilege of writing this column. In the year to come this will be a good place to read about society activities. In this first column, I’ll highlight some society activities and outline a few changes you might see in the coming year.
Today, in its 61st year, the CSEG is a thriving technical and social organization of 2300 members that is united by a number of committees. The volunteers on the CSEG Committees do the work of the CSEG with help from two full time employees and occasionally from the Executive. Most CSEG committees are well oiled machines, some of them with decades of history; many are capable of operating on their own without the CSEG’s help.
Each CSEG committee reports to or liaises with one of the Executive members. When you join a CSEG committee you will meet like-minded people and probably have an opportunity to learn about geophysical exploration technology. And, when you are finished, you will take pride in what you and your committee members achieved. With regards to politics, the CSEG does not lobby. We stay out of politics, but we occasionally support organizations that lobby, such as CAGC, CFES, and CAPP.
Financially, the 2010-2011 CSEG Executive is inheriting a stable society with assets of $1.7 Million. The 2010-11 is budget is not so rosy though. Due primarily to the reduction of profit anticipated from the annual convention, we are projecting a deficit of $170,000 based on anticipated revenue of $785,000 and expenses of $955,000. With this deficit, we expect to consume about 10% of the society’s reserve. We are maintaining service levels, and hence expenses, at 2009 levels because in 2011 we expect normal revenues of $900,000 to $1,000,000. Over the next 12 months the CSEG Outreach Programs, Educational Programs, Technical Publications, and Social Events will continue as you’ve come to expect, plus you will see a bodacious, once in a decade convention.
In 2010 our annual convention will be unique in terms of extent, public engagement, and all-around inclusiveness. Working with the Earth is this year’s convention theme, and hosting it requires that a lot of Canada’s Earth Scientists spend time working together. As in the year 2000, the 2010 convention brings together Canadian Earth Science Societies; many of these organizations do not normally work with each other. The following list illustrates the scope and size of GeoCanada 2010:
- 560 Oral Presentations
- 340 Poster Presentations
- 4 Days of Technical Programs
- 3 Days of Technical Exhibitions
- 2 Days of Core Presentations
- 2 Special Lunches (Brent Butt, and Ray Zahab)
- 35 Short Courses
- 21 Field Seminars
- 4 Plenary Sessions
- Earth Science for Society: 2000 Students involved
- An Earth Science Art Exhibition
- A Teacher Workshop and Field trip
- A National Schools Poster Completion
- More than 5000 attendees
Don’t miss the convention this year; otherwise you will have to wait a decade for the next GeoCanada event. It is certain to be memorable and I offer my gratitude to everyone involved. Check out their website at www.geocanada2010.ca for all the information.
To me, the convention always marks the beginning of summer in Calgary. Once I attend the convention, I expect no more dark days and I say goodbye to cabin fever. In many ways, the convention is the start of another years worth of CSEG activities. Personally I’ll be hard at work on CSEG programs after the convention. If I am lucky and wise, I’ll achieve my unrealistic goal of not getting too involved in day to day activities. I’ll need lots of luck as I love minutia. Besides the day to day activities, there are a couple of important decisions for the CSEG to make in 2010.
In the short term, we have only another year left on our office space lease and we need to think about renewing. In the longer term, the AAPG is planning to host their 2015 convention here in Calgary and it would be fantastic if the CSEG/CSPG/CWLS could join forces with the AAPG in 2015. I’d also like to see a plan created for a more active CSEG website as well as a project initiated to begin updating the venerable CSEG Atlas. Finally, in the fall of 2010 we’ll be recruiting new members of the Executive Committee. Throughout the year, I’ll be looking for your help.
If you see me coming, be prepared to talk about what you want from CSEG and how you are now involved or how you want to get involved. If you can’t decide which CSEG committee to join, then think about starting a new committee.