March 19, 2013

Business Meeting Minutes

In attendance: Don Truhlar, Jim Skinner, Gil Nathanson, David Nesbitt, David Jonas, Amy Mullin, David Leitner, David Chandler, Robert Gordon, Marsha Lester, and one other member.

Don Truhlar opened the meeting announcing the new DCP Executive Committee members and recognizing new APS Fellows.

Marsha Lester provided an update on JCP and the Plyler Prize. JCP continues to seek ways to partner with DCP. If the Program Chair were to provide information to Marsha about planned DCP Symposia, Symposia organizers could suggest topics and authors for perspective articles in JCP. There was discussion of the timing of a JCP special issue on glasses, which contributed to the popularity and liveliness of the DCP Focus Symposium at the 2013 March Meeting on the Physics of Glasses and Viscous Liquids. Many of the authors contributing articles to the JCP special issue were invited to speak at the DCP Focus Symposium.

Don continued the meeting by announcing APS DCP Prizes and the 2013 winners. Don also announced the recipients of 2013 young investigator travel awards (totaling $1200). There was discussion about the small number (3) of applications received for the 2013 meeting, consistent with the small number (2 - 4) received over the past 4 years. This past year DCP advertised the awards to its members more frequently than in the past, and circulated an email to ACS PHYS members announcing the travel awards. Postdocs within 2 years of their Ph.D. were also eligible for a travel award for the first time, but none applied. DCP should continue to get the word out in the future.

There were no applications again this year for the DCP dependent child care award.

Sorters for 2013 Meeting were acknowledged.

In addition to the Plyler Prize, Don announced other APS Awards of interest to DCP for 2014: Beller and Marshak Endowed Lectureships, Lilienfeld Prize, Nicholson Medal for Human Outreach.

Membership: Trend of lower membership in DCP continues. % of APS membership is declining. DCP is currently near 3.2% of APS membership, approaching the 3.0% threshold required for division status. Relatively low student membership in DCP compared to other divisions is discussed and importance of growing student membership. DCP Travel Awards program for students and postdocs should be made more widely known.

DCP Finances (presented by David Leitner): DCP had a surplus of $5200 in 2012, the second consecutive year DCP had a surplus following 5 years of deficits. Revenues have increased the past two years due to the larger share of APS March Meeting revenue that divisions have been receiving from APS. Expenses have dropped in part because DCP no longer participates in the awards banquet, which cost the division about $3000 annually. Travel expenses have also declined in recent years, one unfortunate reason being the small number of Young Investigator Awards for travel to the APS March Meeting.

Jim was thanked for putting together a successful 2013 March Meeting program leading to the topic of suggestions for Gil in planning 2014 Focus Symposia topics. Gil solicited suggestions from the DCP Executive Committee about 2 weeks prior to the meeting, and this list of topics was further discussed at the Business Meeting. Don suggested that popular DCP symposium topics such as DFT be included among the DCP Focus Symposia every two years. Advantages to co-organizing sessions with other divisions discussed, since this can attract students in other divisions to DCP. Advantages of more general, broader symposium titles discussed, which might appeal to students and postdocs considering participation in the symposium.

Discussion of 2014 DCP Focus symposia continued at the DCP Executive Committee meeting (in attendance: Don Truhlar, Jim Skinner, Gil Nathanson, David Nesbitt, David Jonas, Amy Mullin, David Leitner, Robert Gordon, Marsha Lester.)