Letter from the President

[Yuji Ohashi]Letter from the President

I am very proud to report on the successful implementation of an IUCr initiative for developing countries. At its meeting held in Nancy in 2000, the Executive Committee agreed that support of up to USD 6,000 per annum for five years would be appropriate for PhD students from southern African countries to enable them to work in a South African university. Additional financial support might be obtained through other grants programs, the South African NSF, South African industry and charities. In 2004, Bernard Omondi from Kenya was selected as the first recipient of the award (see Page 10). Recently, I heard that he had completed his PhD successfully at the U. of Witwatersrand of Johannesburg.

In March of this year the Finance Committee meeting was held at Grenoble in France and the accounts for 2006 were discussed (and subsequently approved by the Executive Committee). I would like to give you a brief explanation of the financial state of the IUCr. The total income for 2006 was 5,043,909 Swiss Francs. As shown in Fig. 1, the income comprises: 3% membership subscriptions; 89% sales of publications; 3% investment income; and 5% income from advertisements and royalties. On the other hand, the total expenditure was 5,068,339 Swiss Francs. There was therefore an operating deficit of 24,430 Swiss Francs last year. However, the amount (approximately 0.5% of expenditure) is not so serious, since at the same time the assets increased during the year by 393,670 Swiss Francs. As shown in Fig. 2, the expenditure is attributable to: 69% production of publications; 3% young scientists’ support, Visiting Professorships and President’s Fund; 2% Publications and Journals Development; 11% programming and development; 3% promotion; 4% administration including General Assembly, accountancy and legal charges; 7% secretariat office; and 1% Committee meetings.[Expenditure 2006][Income 2006]

The above figures appear somewhat complicated. However, it may be simpler to say that about 90% of income is from the sale of Journals, International Tables and Books, and 10% is from other sources, including membership subscriptions. For expenditure, about 85% is attributable to publications and 15% to management including young scientists’ support. This indicates that about 5% of the income from publications is used for management. This is an excellent quality of the IUCr. I have heard that many scientific associations suffer from a deficit due to journal publications. However, the number of subscribers to IUCr journals is also gradually decreasing. A small increase of the subscription fee will not be able to compensate for the deficit in future. We are awaiting good ideas from all crystallographers on how to improve the financial state without a decline in activity.

Yuji Ohashi, yohashi@spring8.or.jp