Annual reports 2005
Dear Friends and Colleagues,
Input-output economics is enjoying a renaissance among interdisciplinary researchers around the world because of its unique ability to analyze both physical phenomena and economic phenomena and their interrelationships. This analytic framework and our well-established databases are well suited to providing deeper understanding and a basis for action regarding globalization, economic development, alternative energy systems, and environmental challenges. I would like to see the International Input-Output Association promote a venue for sustained dialogue and debate on these, the most critical issues of our time. To do this, we need much greater communication among our constituents and a professional culture that encourages you, our members, to take a wide range of initiatives. I am happy to report on progress that has been made in the past year in these directions. I hope you will help us take the crucial next steps.
You have probably discovered that IIOA’s website has not only a new look but also important new features (http://www.iioa.org/). These include a Member Directory with contact information for a portion of our members as well as a listserve and a Message Board that have already begun to provide for direct communication. These new features are described elsewhere in this report. The greatest limitation to communication at the present time is that we lack e-mail contact information, and your approval to put your e-mail address on IIOA’s e-mail list, for many of you. Please take a moment right now to e-mail me personally at email@example.com and let me know two things: 1) the contact information you wish to have included in the online directory and 2) your approval to put your e-mail address on our Message Board and listerve. While you are at it, I would also like to hear your views about IIOA and proposals you might have for taking new initiatives (e.g., Working Group on a specific topic, student chapter, etc.).
I have a second important item to report, also on the theme of enhanced communication. Starting with the conference in Istanbul in July of 2007, the meetings of the IIOA General Assembly will take place at the bi-annual International Input-Output Conferences. The General Assembly is a high-level decision-making organ of IIOA (see the Statutes, in process of being amended, under “Who we are” on the website), and all members have the right to participate in it. Until now, however, these meetings were held annually in Vienna and had very sparse attendance. The General Assembly will take the place of the informal Members’ Meeting.
These steps are a beginning that can enable a range of new activities. I reiterate my interest in hearing your ideas and hope to see you in person at the Istanbul conference in 2007 -- and possibly also at the meeting in Sendai, Japan, this summer.
In 2005 membership was quite stable: the number of individual members slightly increased from 324 to 326.
The number of institutional members was also stable. 56 of the 326 individual members are now nominated by institutional members.
Membership (as of 30 March 2006)
Individual members (including 56 members nominated by institutional members) 326
Institutional members 18
Work of the Secretariat
The usual work of the Secretariat - in close co-operation with the treasurer - comprised as usual the following activities: (a) Membership administration, (b) Recording of payments of Membership Fees, including dispatching reminders, (c) Responding to letters from members and others, (d) Communicating with the Council, (e) Communicating with our Publishing Company (subscription of members, address changes), (f) Communicating with the Editor of the journal Economic Systems Research, (g) Updating and enlarging the website.
The Secretariat was also involved in the preparation and organisation of the forthcoming Beijing conference as well as in the discussions of the statutes review.
The 2005 regular General Assembly was held on
The Statutes Committee, consisting of Thijs ten Raa (Chair), Jan Oosterhaven, Chris DeBresson and Norbert Rainer, reviewed the current statutes and proposed a series of amendments. The main changes would be the merging of the General Assembly with the members’ meeting and the abolishment of the Board and thus switching the whole responsibility for the Association to the Council. The new revised Austrian law on non-profit organisations provide a new basis for such changes. Nevertheless, all the amendments have to be in line with the Austrian law.
The proposed amendments were discussed in the Council and later on with the Board members. After all, there was general agreement on the proposed changes. The revised statutes were also given to an Austrian lawyer to check its consistency with the Austrian law. The lawyer proposed further amendments which are currently under discussion in the Statutes Committee. The Committee will report to the Council and if the Council approves, the final version of the amendments will be forwarded to the members. A formal decision on the statutes revision will have to be decided by the General Assembly, either in its regular meeting or in an irregular meeting which will especially be organised to deal with the statutes amendments.
Report on the Council Meetings
During the Beijing Conference the Council held three meetings (26 and 28 June and 1 July, 2005) to discuss various basic issues concerning the activities of the IIOA, the preparation of the forthcoming conferences and administrative and organisational issues. The main items dealt with and the decisions taken were the following:
Report of the Members Meeting at the Beijing Conference
A meeting of the members was held on 30 June 2005 during the Beijing conference. The members were informed on the results of the Council meetings and the planned future activities of the IIOA. Especially, there was a presentation of the message board and the invitation to provide the members coordinates for their inclusion in the members’ area of the IIOA website. Also the venue of the next conference (Istanbul) was presented in a slide show.
Report on the 15th International Input-Output Conference, 27 June – 1 July 2005, Beijing, P.R. of China
The 15th International Input-Output Conference has been held from June 27 - July 1, 2005 at the Renmin University of China in Beijing, China P.R., co-organised with the Chinese Input-Output Society. It was also sponsored by the Renmin University of China (RUC) and the National Bureau of Statistics of China (NBS).
The conference was originally planned to be held in 2004 but was postponed a year due to the SARS threat. Nevertheless, about 230 researchers from all over the world came together and a week-long program was crowded by about a hundred of parallel sessions (of which more than one-third were proposed sessions), two plenary sessions, six evening student courses of statistics and theory on I-O, as well as 11 poster sessions as the first trial of the IIOA conferences. During the mid-day of the conference, an excursion bus tour to the Great Wall and the Tombs of 13 Ming Emperors with lunch and dinner was organized in a hot but beautiful weather and all the participants could enjoy these historical monuments of China and traditional Chinese cuisines with other colleagues and their family. On behalf of other IIOA members, I would like to express my sincere gratitude to Professor Yanyun Zhao of RUC as well as many talented students for their dedicated and kind supports to the participants.
Because the conference was the second IIOA conference held in Asia after Sapporo, Japan, in 1986, the content and topics of the conference program were intensively discussed within the members of the program committee and the Council members. As a result, mainly due to travel budget constraints, it was decided to increase parallel sessions as possible as we can ideally by increasing the number of proposed sessions, with the sacrifice of the number of plenary sessions. It was rather different style when compared with the last Montreal conference in 2002 where the Nobel Prize winners of brilliant professors were invited as honorary speakers. This decision was successful because we could compensate the decreased number of participants from non-Asia by the increasing number of participants mainly from China and its neighbours. However, it was a great pity to have increased number of no-show cases and the quality of papers/presentation was doubted by a number of council members.
The sessions covered the following various topics, of which some indicate the need for further developments in future: the new developments and approaches of I-O statistics such as 93SNA, SAM, physical I-O, integrated environmental and economic accounting; inter-regional and world IO modelling; IO applications for Chinese economic development; and teaching /educational issues of input-output economics.
The conference has been concluded by announcing to hold the 16th Input-Output Conference in Istanbul, Turkey during 2-7 July 2007 as well as for the intermediate year of 2006 the second IIOA intermediate meeting in Sendai, Japan.
For further information see: http://www.applstats.org/english/io/index.htm
Co-operation with the Leontief Center St. Petersburg
The Leontief Centre was launched a decade
ago by the mayor of St. Petersburg and Wassily, to reclaim the Nobel
laureate as "one of us." The Centre is independent, but
close to the city's administration. To mention an example, the Leontief
Centre publishes the city budget. Their research is regional economic
policy, not only for the city, but for the Baltic region. They cherish
Wassily and have a number of commemoration projects.
Thijs ten Raa
International Input-Output Meeting on Sustainability, Trade and Productivity, 26 – 28 July 2006, Sendai, Japan
The IIOA, the Pan Pacific Association of Input-Output Studies and the Tohoku University organise the Intermediate Input-Output Conference on Sustainability, Trade and Productivity, to be held from 26 – 28 July 2006 in Sendai, Japan. It is expected that the meeting will promote the exchange of ideas among scientists from a wide range of disciplines (such as economics, ecology, engineering, regional science) and policymakers, managers and government officials with an interest in input-output analysis and related tools for policy analysis (such as computable general equilibrium modelling, transportation modelling, environmental and ecological modelling).
Further information can be obtained form
the conference website: http://www.atkinn.com/iioa/html.
Preparation of the 16th International Input-Output Conference, July 2- 6, 2007, Istanbul, Turkey
The next international input-output conference will take place in Istanbul 2007. The conference will be organized by a local committee headed by Umit Senesen and Gulay Gunluk-Senesen, Istanbul Technical University (ITU), Faculty of Management and the head of the Scientific Programme Committee Klaus Hubacek, University of Leeds, UK.
The goal of the conference is to promote and stimulate the exchange of ideas among economists and between them and government officials, engineers and managers with interest in input-output analysis and related methods worldwide. Thematic topics related to any aspect of input-output modelling are welcome. This includes economic theory, issues of policy and strategy such as growth and development, or energy and environment; all aspects of models, methods, and analytical frameworks; application at global, national, regional and local levels, the use of input-output analysis in new areas including interdisciplinary research and the collection of data and compilation of input-output tables. Also sessions and contributions related to Turkey are stimulated.
Further information may be obtained from the call for papers which is distributed to all members together with this Annual Report, from the conference website which will be launched soon http://www.io2007.itu.edu.tr/ and from the IIOA website http://www.iioa.org/conferences.htm.
Report of the Webmaster
Following the increasing trend of online communication the official web page of the IIOA has been completely reorganized. The layout has been changed and a number of new features have been added.
To facilitate communication amongst members of the IIOA and general users of input-output techniques two communication facilities have been installed on the web site: the IIOA listserve and a Message Board. The former allows posting of messages of members of the IIOA similar to a mass email. The latter is a web based communication tool which allows anybody subscribed to post messages and to follow discussions on any IO related topics. Two sections of the message board are open to the public and two are internal to support communication for council members. Subscribers are going to be approved by the web master so as to minimize the possibility of Spam messages. The submitted information for registration is not publicly available and treated with confidentiality.
The listserve is embedded within a members’ area which also includes other useful features such as members’ directory and an archive for council mailings and other official documents.
Following a request by previous conference organizers and the need to maintain working links to previous conference papers all the external links to previous IIOA conferences (12th – 16th international IIOA conference) have been internalized. That should ensure that this information and papers are managed by the IIOA and is not relying on the web space and skills of other organisations.
Finally, following the suggestion by Erik Dietzenbacher at Montreal an electronic working-paper database with a search engine has been drafted and will be tested over the next few weeks before it will be further refined with inputs from potential users and administrators.
Next steps are to optimize the current web provision. Currently the IIOA web is operated from 3 different servers. Further, the external links section shall be further updated and links to freely available input-output data shall be added.
Volume 17 (2005) had 471 pages, which was seven pages more than our annual page limit (of 464 pages). In December, we published the special issue “Industrial Ecology and Input-Output Economics” for which Sangwon Suh and Shigemi Kagawa acted as guest editors. The topic of this special issue attracts a good deal of attention nowadays, as witnessed by the large number of sessions at the input-output conference in Beijing that covered aspects of industrial ecology in an input-output framework.
Special issues are an excellent opportunity to connect two different research groups and the advantages work in both directions. On the one hand, ESR readers get acquainted with research that is usually published in other journals while, on the other hand, researchers in the other group might get interested in ESR and possibly consider it as a future outlet for their own work. Therefore, I was very pleased that, by the end of 2005, several colleagues were working on special issues. Christian DeBresson was editing “China’s Growing Pains: Recent Input-Output Research in China on China”, Yasuhide Okuyama was preparing a special issue on “Economic Modeling for Disaster Impact Analysis”, and Olav Bjerkholt and Heinz D. Kurz were working on “History of Input-Output Analysis”. It thus seems that also in the next volumes we can carry on the tradition of one special issue per year.
A full account of the number of submissions and their status on January 1, 2006, is given in Table 1. It provides a detailed overview for 2005 and a comparison with the four foregoing years. After a dramatic drop in 2001, the number of submissions has been fairly stable in the last four years. But of course, I would be happy to receive many more high-quality submissions so as to improve the quality of the journal even further.
Table 1: Overview of submissions and their status
a Percentages are based only on the ordinary submissions, i.e. excluding the contributions to special issues. The rejection rate includes the withdrawn papers and the remainder consists of submissions with the referees or with the author(s) for revision.
Report of the Treasurer
Contrary to the estimate, we had a substantial financial surplus in 2005. Two main reasons can be made responsible for this surprising financial result. On the income side the Association received an unexpected refund of the Montreal Conference. On the other side the Beijing Conference turned out to be less expensive than envisaged. One of the reasons was that the local organizers were able to cover a considerable part of costs that were included in the estimate for 2005. We are very grateful for this substantial contribution. No Leontief Prize was awarded and in addition members who were selected for travel grants were not able to attend the Beijing Conference, so that the money devoted for this purpose was refunded.
All the other revenues and costs were similar to the estimate presented one year ago.
The estimate for 2006 again shows a surplus. This money will be needed in 2007, the year of the Conference in Istanbul. The increase in travel costs envisaged for 2006 is due to the co-operation with the Leontief Centre, St. Petersburg.
Because of council elections in 2006 the expenditures for postage, auditing and administration will be higher than the one in 2005. Please note that the costs for administrative purposes are very low in the IIOA. They are less than 10% of what other scientific organization with a comparable number of members spend for this purpose.
The Fee for individual members is still 110 US $ for two years or US $ 60 for one year. Many members used the new possibility to pay their fees via credit cards.
On March 30, 2006 already 101 members had paid for 2006, 19 for 2007 and a few members even for 2008.