A Message From Your 2018 IEEE Technical Activities Vice President

Thank you for your membership in IEEE. This year, through the work of volunteer-identified and member-driven ad hoc committees, TA will be focused on a number of priorities:

  • Nurturing underserved and emerging segments including young professionals, industry (professional and entrepreneurs), and the IEEE Future Directions Committee.
  • Establishing OU partnering opportunities by looking at how to increase the value proposition for Societies/Councils to participate in Standards activities; partnering on continuing educational products with the IEEE Educational Activities Board; and exploring local industry engagement partnering and membership models with IEEE Member & Geographic Activities.
  • Continuing financial transparency and reporting through Society/Council financial guidance development; financial best practices; financial artifacts; and contracts approval processes.

Simplifying and clarifying Technical Activities operations overall. TAB accomplished much to further these goals during the first meeting of the 2018 Technical Activities Board (TAB) held at the Swan and Dolphin Resort, Orlando, Florida, USA on Friday, 16 February and Saturday, 17 February 2018.

Efforts to Increase Diversity and Inclusion

The 2018 TAB made strides to increase diversity amongst its many committees by approving inclusion of diversity recommendations within the charters of existing TAB committees. The new language requests that committees strive to be more diverse in respect to such factors as gender, geographical region, and professional sector (academia/industry/other), and that committee membership reflect the diversity of the IEEE membership eligible to serve.

Reaffirmation of IEEE Code of Conduct, Code of Ethics and Nondiscrimination Policy

TAB approved a statement reaffirming the IEEE Code of Conduct, Code of Ethics, and Nondiscrimination Policy. This statement solidifies TAB’s dedication to ethical and fair treatment of all IEEE members, and reads: “IEEE members are committed to the highest standards of integrity, responsible behavior, and ethical and professional conduct. The IEEE Technical Activities Board reaffirms its commitment to an environment free of discrimination and harassment as stated in the IEEE Code of Conduct, IEEE Code of Ethics, and IEEE Nondiscrimination Policy.” Reinforcing codes and policies in existence is only the first step; TAB will continue to look ahead at new opportunities to raise awareness through education, easier reporting, messaging, training, and dialogue.

Motions for Improved Financial Transparency

TAB also demonstrated its commitment to promoting financial transparency within the organization, which will allow IEEE and its Societies and Councils to make more informed financial decisions, by approving motions to convert indirect charges to direct expenses, as well as to change the distribution of infrastructure costs across all lines of operation:

  • Motion: TAB requests that the IEEE Finance Committee establish a plan, with a timeline, to convert all indirect charges to S/Cs to itemized direct expenses against each S/C’s lines of operation (periodicals, conferences, membership, education, standards, etc.).  Such reports should be automated and available monthly.
  • Motion: TAB requests that the IEEE Finance Committee establish a plan, with a timeline, for a new methodology to change the distribution of infrastructure costs across all lines of operation, to promote consistency and synergy in decision-making at all levels.  TAB requests that audits be performed to ensure that redistribution of costs occurs without a net increase in total allocated costs.

Improving the Contracts Approval Process

A discussion session on “Improving the IEEE Contracts Approval Process” was held Saturday, 17 February, to explore issues related to the IEEE contracts processes. More than 80 individuals attended with 50 participating in breakout sessions, which included decision authority, workflow transparency, risk management, efficiency of execution, and change management.  

IEEE Society/Council Young Professional Summit

The first IEEE Society/Council Young Professionals Representatives Summit was sponsored by the TAB Management Committee and co-located with the IEEE Board Series. This 1.5 day facilitated leadership and strategy session brought together 24 Society/Council Young Professionals Representatives for the first time, to discuss: developing and communicating value; effectively contributing to Society/Council activities; key engagement strategies; and, creating new structures and driving action within existing S/C ecosystems. The session culminated in action plan development, and included a social networking event co-hosted by the IEEE Board of Directors, which provided a great opportunity for the Board to connect with many of our next generation leaders from within Technical Activities.

Improved Clarity with IEEE and TA Nominations & Appointments

The nominations and appointments process can be both frustrating and confusing.  The requirements for positions and availabilities vary. The TAB N&A committee has attempted to provide improved clarity for both Technical Activities and IEEE positions by providing a consolidated list of all available positions for both TAB and the IEEE, with details including term, criteria, nominee slate and appointment information, timeframe, committee/position description and responsibilities and meetings.

This information will continue to be updated and expanded as needed.  This consolidated file can also be found on the “Become an IEEE Technical Activities Volunteer” TA page as well as:

https://ta.ieee.org/volunteer-development/nominations-appointments/become-an-ieee-technical-activities-volunteer 

​Also on this page, under “How do I Express Interest in Future Opportunities”, is a slide deck, that provides tips and information regarding the Technical Activities and the IEEE Nominations Processes, including tips for getting nominated and creating a successful nomination packet.  ​

Thank you again for all that you do to make IEEE Technical Activities such a vibrant, technical member-driven, staff-enabled community.  I look forward to working with you this year as we build upon IEEE Technical Activities’ strength together..

Kathy Land

2018 Technical Activities Vice President

Comments

  • Thank you Kathy, for a well articulated and thoughtful plan for TAB. I liked the three priorities you listed: they are, in my opinion too, the most important items which will enrich the life of TAB. For one thing, the financial transparency is of course crucial in that it will help dissipate much of the confusion and frustration that is plaguing the relationships with societies.

    I am also heartened to see your focus on the Educational aspects of our mission: much of our future depends on it. I know that the Computer Society, for one, has initiated some effort in that direction and I hope we can foster some synergy.

    Your year is off to a good start!

    Jean-Luc Gaudiot, FIEEE
    2017 IEEE Computer Society President

  • Ms. Kathy Land,

    I liked the initiatives, particularly the initiative to achieve (improve) transparency and costs structure on Finance. Best of luck to you and your team!

    Caio Alexandre Ferreira, Fellow IEEE
    IEEE Industry Applications Society President 2000
    IEEE Technical Activities Board 2000

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