Election of next Chair
Whilst I have only served 6 months as chair, PSI’s procedures and structures require me to start looking for my successor already. I had been warned by previous chairs that this can sometimes be challenging. Anyway, it has been much easier this year, and I am pleased to announce that two members have already applied and you will therefore have a genuine choice. I have been a member of PSI since 1994, and cannot remember the last time this happened; answers on a postcard please (…..or maybe on LinkedIn, with our new communications initiative in mind).
The finances for 2017 will be finalized in the next few months. Due to the good governance of our directors, volunteers and MCI, we should make a handsome surplus. As PSI is a non-profit organisation, this will enable us to invest more in our society, and give our members an even better experience. As a starting point, Scientific Meeting registration fees will be reduced from £160 to £40 this year for members.
I would like to take this opportunity to thank Fiona Brock (our Treasurer) for her excellent management of our accounts. PSI has an income of more than £540,000, so this is a vital role in our organisation. A special thank you also to MCI, who have reduced the money owed to PSI to an all-time low of £2,500. To put this in perspective, it was £31,000 last year.
I mentioned in my Conference speech last year that we wish to continue our close relationship with RSS. The result of the merger election was clear, but there are plenty of opportunities for us to collaborate as two independent organisations. We have already collaborated on a few items in 2017. For instance, we will be using RSS’s video facilities in a few months to record a Scientific Meeting. We also wish to look for other opportunities to collaborate and are meeting with the RSS Leadership in February to move this forward.
Video on Demand (including eLearning)
Video on Demand platform (including eLearning capacity) will be rolled out early this year. I was really pleased that news of this initiative reached statisticians in the US, and the chair of the Biopharmaceutical Section of the American Statistical Association contacted me to learn more about our plans. It is an exciting development though, especially as all content will be made free to PSI members.
Subscription Renewals and Membership
You will have received your subscription renewals, and will see that the new membership categories have been implemented. The society is now more inclusive and open. The vast majority of you will be Full members, with full voting rights. We are also offering free membership to students in order for us to attract future graduates to our industry. The membership now stands at 881, and we are looking to increase this in the coming years.
Seal of Office
Mark Morris mentioned a few times that there was a Seal of Office for the Chair of the PSI, which had been given to him for safe keeping by Robert Cuffe. It all sounded very official; I wondered if we had one as a limited non-profit company, with a full board of directors? Anyway, Mark kindly sent it through to me the other day (see the headline picture). Who says statisticians have no sense of humour (…. well, apart from my mum)?
PS. Shooting the sheriff is strictly prohibited.
I will put this article on LinkedIn. Please feel free to share your feedback and suggestions in the comments section. This is your society.