Minutes of the EXECUTIVE COMMITTEE MEETING

Number : 6                             Date : April 29, 2005                            Place : Geneva, Switzerland

Attendance :

Absentee :

Robin Spence, President

Peter Fajfar, Slovenia 

Panayotis Carydis, Vice President

 Rafael Blasquez, Spain

Martin Koller, Vice President

 

Atilla Ansal, Secretary General

 
Rainer Flesch, Treasurer

 

Mauro Dolce, Secretary

 

Pierre-Alain Nazé, France  
Carlos Oliveira, Portugal  
Roger Musson, ESC Representative  

Prologue :

The sixth meeting of the Executive Committee of the European Association for Earthquake Engineering was held in Geneva, Switzerland on Saturday April 29, 2006 between 9:00 and 16:00 hours. The Executive Committee meeting was chaired by the President.

Agenda :

1.	Approval of the Agenda
2.	Report on ECEES in 2006
3.	Central Office Activities
4.	Statutes
5.	Activities of the President
6.	Marie Curie Proposal
7.	Budget
8.	Miscellaneous

Item 1: The draft agenda was revised according to the item priorities since some participants have to leave early in the afternoon and the new Agenda of the Meeting was approved by all members present.. 

Item 2: The Vice President and Conference Co-Chairmen Dr. Martin Koller summarised the latest developments concerning the First European Conference on Earthquake Engineering and Seismology (1ECEES) to be held in Geneva during September 3-8, 2006. He mentioned the difficulties encountered in harmonising the conference traditions of both Associations since this will the first joint conference by EAEE and ESC. He stated that the conference is going to be financially supported by two main sponsors: SwissRe and Swiss Government. The grant program, financed by the Swiss Government, will support 60-70 students and young researchers from economically weak countries, among which approximately 20 of them will get full support and the rest will be exempted from conference fee. Approximately 300 applications were received for the grant program.

2.1 The participants with full paper submission were expected to submit their abstracts until February 6, 2006. By this deadline, 1500 abstracts were received, only 20 of which were declined. The total number of abstract submissions with stand-alone abstracts as of 29 April was reported as 1750. However, it is expected that this number would increase to 2000 in total by the stand-alone abstract submission deadline. 300 early registrations and 250 paper submissions were received as of 29 April, 2006.

2.2 Secretary General mentioned the complaint of the Romanian Delegate concerning the requirement to pay both registration and paper fees. Dr. Koller explained that the rules were made explicitly by the Organizing Committee, and accordingly abstracts or papers would be removed from the conference abstract book and proceedings CD if none of the authors of an accepted paper or abstract are registered before 30 June 2006 and if the registration fee is not paid. The participants with papers are also required to pay the additional paper fee. The program of the conference will be prepared based on the registrations, and the participants that register after May 31 will not be able to have oral presentations. Dr. Koller suggested that all of these issues should be stated clearly in the Guidelines for Organising European Conferences. Thus, ExCom agreed to revise the Guidelines based on Dr. Koller’s suggestions before the General Assembly. Secretary General will prepare and circulate a Draft Revised Guidelines with e-mail among the ExCom Members to finalise the Guidelines for ECEE before the General Assembly.

2.3 It was decided to have the Seventh ExCom meeting for the 2002-2006 term on Monday, Sep. 4, 2006 at 6:30 pm and the first meeting for the new Executive Committee on Friday, Sep.8, 2006 at the same time. EAEE General Assembly will meet on Tuesday evening, Sep. 5, 2006. The conference opening ceremony will be a joint ceremony at 10:00 am open to both organizing communities, politicians etc. following the separate openings of ESC and EAEE at 9:00 am on Monday Sep.4, 2006.

2.4 Secretary General informed the Committee about the proposal of Prof. Esteva Maraboto to hold a special session by IAEE during 1ECEES for sharing some ideas and plans addressed to the reduction of seismic risk worldwide. The request was positively welcomed by the committee.

Item 3: Secretary General presented the Report of the Central Office Activities for the term November 2005 – May 2006 summarising the present situation concerning the EAEE Newsletter, Membership, Webpage, Bulletin of Earthquake Engineering, Agreement with Springer and Sinapse.  

3.1 The Newsletter is being electronically published and distributed regularly twice a year and the Delegates of National Associations are being asked to distribute the Newsletter among their members. Central Office made plans to have printed copies of the Newsletters that will be available for distribution during 1ECEES.

3.2 The Secretary General informed the Committee about the number of individual and organizational members, and summarised the efforts of the Central Office to increase the number of individual membership by sending e-mail invitations to participants of the recently held conferences and members of EAEE National Associations.

3.3 The Central Office supplied the list of EAEE individual members who paid their 2006 membership fees, to the Conference Organizing Committee to enable them to apply reduced conference registration. The EAEE individual members will have the advantage of reduction in conference fee only if they renew their membership for 2006 until the end of July.

3.4 One of the suggestions was to offer one year EAEE Individual Membership with electronic subscription to BEE to all conference participants in the next EAEE conference to be held in 2010. The Executive Committee agreed with this proposal and suggested that it should be added as an additional item to the Guidelines for ECEE.

3.5 Secretary General introduced the new web page design that aims to have a better page and space arrangement than the previous one. He explained that the Central Office would be in charge of all BEE electronic subscriptions as of 2007. Thus, along with the new design of the web page, a secure site is being established only for the EAEE Individual Members with electronic subscription to connect and to download BEE articles.

3.6 Editorial report of BEE for the period of 2005-2006 was presented to the Executive Committee. According to the paper statistics for each year, especially after changing to the internet submission procedure, the inflow of manuscripts has been increasing steadily. It was previously decided to publish four issues per year starting from 2006. If the inflow of manuscripts follows the similar trend during the remaining part of 2006, the page numbers would be increased for 2007 issues. He mentioned that accepted BEE manuscripts would be accessible on the Springer web site before being printed in one of the forthcoming issues.

3.7 The Secretary General’s suggestion for the revision of the Editorial Board in Geneva during the forthcoming ECEES was discussed; the proposal of changing the Editorial Board composition every four years such that each member would serve for 12 years was approved by the Executive Committee. It was also suggested to initiate this revision not in Geneva but in 2010 after all the members served for at least 8 years. It was decided that Secretary General should discuss this issue with Springer as the Editor before finalising his decision.

3.8 Secretary General summarised the draft copy of the “Letter of Agreement” between EAEE and Springer regarding the mutually beneficial cooperation for BEE. The Agreement includes the details on Editor and Editorial Board, Responsibilities of the Publisher, Responsibilities of EAEE and Termination. Among EAEE responsibilities, it was stated that EAEE would establish a secure site for the electronic distribution of BEE to the EAEE Individual Members and EAEE would pay to Springer a mutually agreed annual fee. EAEE shall also provide a free exhibit area to Springer during EAEE meetings and conferences. The Agreement was discussed and approved by the Executive Committee with some minor revisions. The wording of the article concerning the allocation of free exhibit space to Springer will be modified to include the phrase “at reduced rate”.

3.9 The letter of invitation concerning the organisation of the symposium on “Thirty Years from Romania Earthquake of 4 March 1977” submitted to the Secretary General by Romanian representatives of “Romanian National Centre of Earthquake Engineering and Vibrations” was discussed briefly in the Executive Committee. The Executive Committee approved to support the symposium to be held in Bucharest under the coordination of the Technical University of Civil Engineering and Romanian National Centre of Earthquake Engineering and Vibrations as one of the Organising Associations.

3.10 As the last item, Secretary General summarised the invitation to join SINAPSE e-network (Scientific INformAtion for Policy Support in Europe) which has been launched during the Science and Society Forum in Brussels by the European Commission. SINAPSE offers its members the following communication tools: Library of scientific advice, EC consultation, Early warning system, Surveys and discussions, Yellow pages and a Web search. The invitation was approved by the Executive Committee and Secretary General was given the responsibility to complete the registration procedure.

Item 4: Secretary General explained briefly his activities and the progress concerning the legal establishment of EAEE as an International Association in Istanbul with its Central office at Bogazici University, Kandilli Observatory and Earthquake Research Institute. The existing EAEE statutes were translated to Turkish and were reviewed by the Directorate of Associations in the Ministry of Interior. Some revisions were requested in the Statutes mostly due to legal restrictions. The revised EAEE Statutes were discussed in detail in the ExCom Meeting. The main disagreement was on the Article defining the participation and voting rights of Individual and Corporate Members in the General Assembly,

4.1 The Executive Committee reached a consensus on an intermediate solution proposed by the President to form a Council within EAEE administration composed of Delegates of National Member Associations and Executive Committee that will have the responsibility to decide on the venue and on the Organiser of the next conference.

4.2 Secretary General was asked to inquire the acceptability of such a Council by the Turkish Interior Ministry. In case the response is positive, he was given the responsibility to revise the Statutes accordingly and to distribute the copies of the revised EAEE Statutes to all Delegates of National Member Associations for approval by postal bulleting. The formal application to the Turkish Interior Ministry would be made after the approval of the revised Statutes.

      He informed the Committee about the number of individual and organizational members, and explained the ongoing efforts to increase the number of individual membership by sending invitation letters via e-mail to the participants of recently held conferences and to the members of EAEE National Associations. He mentioned that most of the EAEE National Member Associations have paid their National membership dues for 2003 and 2004, however; there are still 10 EAEE National Associations (from Algeria, Bulgaria, Cyprus, Egypt, Greece, Iran, Kazakhstan, Romania, Turkey and Ukraine) that have not paid at all. It was decided to inform the Delegates of these National Associations to encourage them to submit their membership dues in the near future.

Item 5: The President summarised his activities under three main topics: EAEE – EU Workshop on Earthquake Risk Reduction in Europe held in Lisbon, European Construction Technology Platform, and Global Initiative of Brian Tucker.

5.1 President presented the Executive Summary on Earthquake Risk Reduction Programme proposed by EAEE that summarises the conclusions and recommendations of the Workshop held in Lisbon. Prof. Robin Spence, Prof. Rainer Flesch, and Prof. Carlos Oliveria were elected as the Liaison Committee to get in contact with Brussels to present a briefing of what could be achieved and to explain the ideas and conclusions of Lisbon Workshop. The new Executive Committee that will be elected in Geneva will be informed about this initiative and will be invited to attend this meeting.

5.2 President mentioned that the criteria and philosophy for FP7 are still being developed, which created a good opportunity following the Lisbon Workshop, since new suggestions can be submitted to EU on earthquake risk reduction. He also mentioned the invitation by Denis Peter to go to Brussels on behalf of EAEE to discuss better organisation of risk mitigation activity in Europe, networking among actors, and suggestions for the next round of research funding FP7.

5.3 President also mentioned that the European Construction Technology Platform is a combination of construction companies under Brussels. Protection from of natural hazards is on the long term agenda of this Platform whose main purpose is improving the quality of life. A conference of this platform, expected to be influential, will be held on November 21-22, 2006. The Executive Committee decided to be represented in this conference at least by one Executive Committee Member.

5.4 The Secretary General mentioned about the participation of EAEE and Robin Spence in the Global initiative started by Brian Tucker that is basically aiming to determine how earth science and earthquake engineering professional societies can jointly influence public policy and advocate seismic safety to reduce global earthquake losses. This initiative had their first meeting in USA during the SSA Conference in 2004 and the second meeting in China in 2006. The ExCom agreed to support this initiative and try to participate to their meeting if possible.

Item 6: The Secretary General informed Executive Committee about his efforts concerning the preparation of the FP6 Marie Curie training course proposal, ETCEE, for resubmission. This project call is the last call within FP6 phase before FP7. The deadline for the submission is May 17, 2006. Secretary General got in touch with all Training Course Coordinators and communicated to them his suggestions concerning the problematic points of the previous proposal. The general intention was to decrease the number of courses and to arrange a more detailed proposal with the help and support of the TC Coordinators.

Item 7: As agreed in previous Executive Committee meeting, a new bank account was established to give Central Office the ability to control and monitor money transfers and to maintain the budget. Prof. Flesch will control the financial issues as the Treasurer. Since Central Office does not have a legal identity, the Treasurer Prof. Rainer Flesch is still in charge of controlling payments by credit card. The budget from the Treasurer and from the new bank account in Istanbul are being compiled and tabulated in the Central Office. Secretary General informed the Executive Committee about the present situation concerning the budget. The budget was approved by the Executive Committee.

7.1 Central Office was asked to prepare annual income – expenditure tables for the four year period, and budget proposal for the next four years to be submitted to the Executive Committee in the its Seventh meeting in Geneva. The Executive Committee decided that the approval of four-year budget should be in the agenda of the General Assembly. It was also suggested to ask two National Delegates to audit the income and expenditures, as well as the accounting for the past four years.

Epilogue : The sixth meeting of the Executive Committee of the EAEE held in Geneva was finalized. The meeting ended with the thanks of the President to all participating members.

 

Atilla Ansal

Secretary General