EC Meeting May 2006, Nairobi, Kenya

International Association of Agricultural Information Specialists

Executive Committee Minutes

May 21 and 22, 2006

Nairobi, Kenya 


The meeting came to order at 10 a.m. in the Parliament Room, Hotel Intercontinental, Nairobi, Kenya.

Present: Peter Ballantyne; Debra Currie; Stephen Rudgard; A.P. Greider; Elizabeth Dodsworth; Elizabeth Goldberg; Nihad Maliha; Dorothy Mukhebi

Apologies: Michal Demes; Vielka Chang-Yau; H.V. Mote; Barbara Hutchinson; Takashi Nagatsuka; Shuchun Pan

Welcome and Opening Remarks: Peter Ballantyne welcomed the Executive Committee to Kenya and thanked Dorothy Mukhebi for her hospitality.

Approval of the Agenda: The following items were added to the agenda:

  • Herder list
  • Marketing strategy
  • Fund raising options
  • Blog reporters/reporting
  • Upcoming meetings
  • Strategies for engaging members
  • Nairobi Planning
  • IFLA
  • Digital Divide Website

Elizabeth Goldberg suggested that “action items be highlighted in the minutes”.

Reports from IAALD Officers (written reports circulated with the agenda and attached to the minutes)

  • Presidents Report (October – April) – Stephen Rudgard commented that the IAALD Blog was well received. Peter Ballantyne has been the sole reporter for the Blog to date but plans to expand that in the near future.
  • Secretary/Treasurer’s Report – Elizabeth Goldberg suggested that IAALD establish a financial reserve policy and that money be set aside each year to build that fund. The 2005 financial report was reviewed. The 2005 accounts will be audited by the accountant in England and the 2006 accounts will be done on a demand basis by an accounting firm in Lexington. The 2006 budget was presented and reviewed by the Executive Committee. The 2006 operation budget was approved. Action items for the Secretary/Treasurer: Establish a reserve policy for IAALD; contact the Account in England and organize the audit of the 2005 accounts
  • Report from the Chair of the IAALD Africa Conference (not written)—Dorothy Mukhebi reported that the IAALD Africa Conference will achieve a great deal for both IAALD and Africa. The conference has brought together the major African networks and a whole range of players in Agriculture on the continent including universities and research institutes. The conference has captured attendees from the entire continent of Africa including people from Anglophone, Lusophone, and Francophone countries. A difficult task of the conference was managing the money and coming up with a secure venue. Funding was found for participants from CTA, ASERECA, FAO, and IDRC. Key groups were invited to meet around the meeting. The Executive Committee thanked Dorothy and her committee for all of their efforts in arranging an excellent conference and asked Dorothy to write up best practices for organizing a conference.
  • Editor’s Report: The Quarterly Bulletin is back on schedule with v. 51, no. 1 being issued in May. Volume 51, no. 2 will be done by the editor and issued in August. It will include an extensive write up of the African Conference and QB 51, no. ¾ will be the proceedings from the conference and published in Kenya. This issue will be out in the fall of 2006.

Discussion Items

  • QB Plans and name change. Debbie Currie summarized the comments received on the IAALD Listserv concerning the name change for the Quarterly Bulletin. Over 40 comments were received. The reasons why an organization changes the name of its journal is to reflect its current image, reflect a changing profession and to reflect the nature of the organization. The name needs to capture where agricultural information is today and the principles in choosing a new name include:

o Continuity

o IAALD brand

o Short name (acronym friendly)

o Global/International scope

o Forward looking

o Reflect a new scope

o No frequency in the title

All EC members agreed that we wanted to represent high quality and that the journal should have a review process. The scope of the articles will be practical and applied and move away from theoretical articles. The EC struck out the suggested names that did not meet the above criteria and then debated the 2 names left on the list. In the end it was decided that the name would be Agricultural Information Worldwide with the tag line “Connecting Communities of Information Specialists Serving Agriculture”. IAALD would appear in the masthead of the journal indicating that it is a publication of the organization. Debbie Currie will work on the transition.

The EC then prioritized the rest of the discussion items on the agenda to make sure the most important items were covered. Order of the Discussion items:

  • World Congress ‘08

o The following people were recommended for consideration to serve on the 2008 conference planning committee: Mila Ramos, The Philippines; Shuchun Pan, China; Yuni Soeripto, Indonesia; Qiaoqiao Zhang, UK/China; Tomaz Bartol, Slovenia; someone from Kasetsart University; Patricia Kelley, CSIRO; Byron Mook, The Netherlands; Michael Riggs, Thailand; someone from AFITA; S. Srivnas, India. Peter Ballantyne will approach suggested members to see if they would be willing to serve.

o Nick Maliha raised the question of the split of the profits and asked that they be 50/50 instead as was done with the profits from the World Congress in Lexington instead of the 25/75 as listed in the conference proposal. Peter Ballantyne will discuss with Takashi Nagatsuka.

o The Japanese Conference will most likely be held in conjunction with AFITA. It was recommended that IAALD have two tracks in the conference to focus on issues of interest to IAALD members. It could be something on innovation or the role of rural information centers.

o Looking ahead to the 2010 conference it was suggested that we email the group to see if they need anything. Stephen Rudgard volunteered to email Jean-François Giovanetti in France to see of the group needs anything at this point in time.

  • Income generation/fund raising

o The EC discussed the possibility of getting organizations to sponsor a thematic issue of the Quarterly Bulletin. This was discussed as a “rescue tactic” for the organization to provide operating capital as we explore other models for the Quarterly Bulletin. Elizabeth Dodsworth mentioned that CABI did supplements to their journals as income generators but all agreed that doing so would increase the workload of already overburdened volunteers. The strategy for the next two years will be to aim for cost recovery.

o Elizabeth Goldberg suggested that we do a market study and is going to investigate how that could be done.

o Targeted marketing to specific groups for membership was discussed. Suggestions were library graduate schools as well as joint memberships with other organizations, grants, advertising, sponsored issues and building in administrative fees for joint sponsorship.

o The discussion turned briefly to sustaining our members in developing countries and collection of fees as well as recruiting in Europe.

  • Launch of Agricultural Information Worldwide

o The idea of making the successor to the Quarterly Bulletin an open access journal was discussed and it was decided that the financial implications need to be further investigated. IAALD needs to decide what it is going to provide and what the next generation QB will be. One idea was to have an online facilitated dialog and summarize the discussion in the journal.

o The decision was made to explore open access and other electronic options and launch the new journal in 2008. A small group consisting of Debbie Currie, Toni Greider, and Elizabeth Dodsworth was appointed to gather the appropriate management information and to look at the financial model for the QB.

[The following were on the agenda but not discussed]

  • Sisters and partners
  • Engaging the membership in IAALD work
  • Professional development

The meeting adjourned at 5:30 p.m. with an agreement for the Executive Committee to meet at

6:30 p.m. on Monday evening (May 22, 2006) to develop action plans.


International Association of Agricultural Information Specialists

Executive Committee Minutes

Meeting continuation May 22, 2006 

Nairobi, Kenya 

The meeting came to order at 6:30 p.m. in the lobby of the Intercontinental Hotel.

Members present: Elizabeth Dodsworth, Elizabeth Goldberg, Debra Currie, A.P.Greider, Stephen Rudgard, Peter Ballantyne.

The Executive Committee reviewed the action items in the Strategic Plan and the charges to the subcommittees formed in Rome. Stephen Rudgard will send a message to each group convener asking them to convene their groups, constitute their membership (including non Executive Committee members (by the end of June) and come up with a set of action plans for their area of responsibility (by the end of the year).

The Executive Committee will use Skype for a conference call to discuss the progress around September 30th.

The group then discussed an event for 2007 possibly in Europe. Peter Ballantyne will approach ASLIB or perhaps Wageningen Agricultural University about co-hosting events. Another option is a meeting around the FAO meeting in Rome, June 2007.

The next EC meeting is tentatively planned for Rome in June 2007.

IAALD is actively working with AIBDA to form a partnership. It is hoped that Stephen Rudgard will be able to sign an agreement on behalf of IAALD when he is in Oaxaca, Mexico for the RIBDA meeting in September.

The meeting adjourned at 7:30 p.m.

Respectfully submitted,

Antoinette Paris Greider

IAALD Secretary/Treasurer


Action items

  • Establish a reserve policy for IAALD – T. Greider
  • Contact the Account in England and organize the audit of the 2005 accounts – T. Greider
  • Write up best practices for meeting organizers to be put up on the IAALD website – D. Mukhebi
  • Work on the transition of the name change for the Quarterly Bulletin – D. Currie
  • Appoint IAALD members to 2008 Program Committee from suggested list – P. Ballantyne
  • Discuss the 2008 conference profit split with Japanese organizers – P. Ballantyne
  • Email Jean-Françoise Giovanetti to see if the 2010 Conference group needs any assistance—S. Rudgard
  • Gather management information and look at a financial model for the new IAALD publication – E. Dodsworth, D. Currie, T. Greider
  • Email to all IAALD sub groups listed in the IAALD Action Strategy on membership and plan of work – S. Rudgard
  • Explore a meeting in Europe for 2007 – P. Ballantyne