H. Frederick Dylla Director's Matters

As you walk through our lobbies, you may have wondered who supports the research that is described in AIP's journals, and why they funded inquiries into academic subjects like the magnetic properties of an atom's core.

The federal taxpayer supports the vast majority of curiosity-driven basic research in physics. After several decades of flat funding, Washington policymakers in both parties and on both ends of Pennsylvania Avenue have decided that one of the keys to America's future economic prosperity is to increase federal funding for physical sciences research. This is an exciting time for physicists since the Administration and Congress want to double physical sciences funding over the next ten years. While it is too early to tell if this goal will be met, the outlook is promising. AIP supports this goal by participating in coalitions that advocate for the Department of Energy's Office of Science, National Science Foundation (NSF) and the Defense Department's science and technology programs such as the Energy Sciences Coalition, Coalition for National Science Funding (CNSF), and the Coalition for National Security Research. Some of our Member Societies also belong to these coalitions.
SPS Summer interns

SPS Interns Ryan Field and Meagan Saldua and Fred Dylla speak with Arden Bement, Director of NSF.

Last Tuesday evening, I joined the SPS Summer Interns and staff from AIP's MGR and Education Divisions at the CNSF Exhibit at the Rayburn Congressional office building. Organizations from all over the United States exhibited their NSF-funded projects, to show Congress that good science and good programs rely on NSF funding, and to thank Congress for supporting NSF.

Many technologies had their start when a physicist received a federal grant to study what seemed to be a narrow subject. Sometimes basic research leads to spectacular billion-dollar technologies. Research into the magnetic properties of an atom's nucleus is the basis for MRIs. Other basic research made possible plasma screen televisions, cell phones, global positioning systems, and laser-driven products. If America wants to retain its economic edge, strong support for physics research will be necessary. Who knows -- an article in an AIP journal this month filled with calculations, graphs, and charts that "no one but a physicist could read" might be the basis for a multi-billion-dollar technology in coming decades that no one could live without!

Sincerely yours,
Fred

 

PXP's Hawaiian luau
In early June, Peer X-Press launched a manuscript submission and review site for the 15th American Physical Society Topical Conference on Shock Compression of Condensed Matter (SCCM 2007) held last week in Waikoloa, Hawaii. AIP will publish proceedings of the conference in the AIP Conference Proceedings series.


Knowing your customer

Ringgold, Inc.On June 22, 2007, a representative from Fulfillment & Marketing Services attended a user group meeting for the clients of Ringgold, Inc. We recently contracted with Ringgold to analyze our global subscriber data through the assignment of a unique institutional identifier for each subscribing account. For example, SUNY Stony Brook may have several unique subscribing accounts, each with its own AIP-assigned account number.

The single Ringgold identifier will tie these related accounts in our subscriber database, and allow us to assess the activity at an institutional level, rather than by subscribing account. Further, Ringgold is also supplying a structured hierarchy for our subscribers; we will know that SUNY Stony Brook belongs to the greater SUNY system. Such information is useful in our pursuit of consortia and multisite licensing opportunities.

AIP card deck
Playing with a stacked deck
The History Center, Physics Today, Sigma Pi Sigma, the Society of Physics Students, Corporate Associates, and the American Association of Physics Teachers collaborated to create two decks of playing cards for use in promotions and as thank-you gifts to donors. Each deck features the faces of renowned physicists -- one set from the early 20th century and the other post-1960. The back of each deck displays the logo of a different AIP division or the AAPT logo. Thanks to Spencer Weart in the History Center and Gloria Lubkin of Physics Today for their suggestions on physicists to include and to Heather Lindsay, AIP History Center, for providing the archival images.

R&D pays off
This spring AIP was one of 40 organizations that brought several hundred scientists from all disciplines to DC to deliver the message that "R&D pays off" to the U.S. Congress. Approximately 30 scientists from AIP Member Societies (AVS, AGU, APS and AAS) participated in the effort. Our MGR staff helped escort AVS scientists to their appointments. MGR also helped bring a group of 35 OSA members to Capitol Hill from OSA's CLEO meeting to request funding for research and science education. Likewise, AIP staff accompanied Pennsylvania and New Jersey OSA scientists on their Congressional visits.

Calling all ideas!
Human Resources periodically arranges brown bag lunches for employees giving them an opportunity to learn new hobbies or become educated on important issues that affect our lives. These lunches are approximately 45 minutes in length. Previous lunches dealt with topics such as identity theft (MD & NY), stress management (MD & NY), how to understand your credit report (MD), wills and estate planning (NY), flower exchange (NY), and energy conservation tips (NY). We are turning to you to find out what topics you would like to learn more about through these informal sessions. Send topic ideas to Judy Rance or Donna Jones for consideration and we will do our best to find an expert to come on-site. Or, if you are an expert on something, let us know -- we may have a spotlight waiting for you!

Hotels for less
AIP is a member organization of Club Quarters, a lower cost alternative for hotels in cities such as New York, Chicago, Washington, DC, Boston, Philadelphia, London, etc. Club Quarters are private, full service hotels for member organizations designed for the business traveler and subsidized for family and friends' use on weekends and holiday periods. AIP staff and Member Society staff and members can benefit from this unique service for business or personal use. For more information, visit www.clubquarters.com. Reservations can be made by calling Member Services at 212-575-0006 and mentioning AIP.


We invite your feedback to this newsletter via email to aipmatters@aip.org.