INFORMS Open Forum

Proposal to change INFORMS AM to Saturday-Tuesday? No thanks!

  • 1.  Proposal to change INFORMS AM to Saturday-Tuesday? No thanks!

    Posted 12 days ago

    Hi all:

    Like many of you, I received a survey this morning about a proposed change to the schedule for future INFORMS annual meetings, shifting the schedule to Saturday through Tuesday (from the current Sunday through Wednesday).

    I was surprised that the survey did not include a question like: "Would this change make it more or less likely for you to attend the INFORMS Annual Meeting?" or "Do you think that, on balance, this proposed change is a good idea?" If the survey included such a question, it would have made it easier for me to vote resoundingly against this proposed idea.

    Perhaps some believe that by holding a 4-day conference that ends on a Tuesday that more people would be likely to participate on the final day. In my view this is not likely. Many busy people likely believe that a large, general conference that last 4 days is simply too long and changing the start day does not help.

    I just wanted to post to say that I am personally not interested in ever having a multi-day conference begin on a Saturday. This is certainly not a family-friendly idea in my opinion. Since the survey did not ask explicitly, I will therefore use this forum instead to vote against this proposed change.

    Thanks for listening, and see you (not on Saturday) in Seattle!
    Alan

    ================================
    Alan Erera
    President, INFORMS TSL Society
    Professor, ISyE, Georgia Tech



  • 2.  RE: Proposal to change INFORMS AM to Saturday-Tuesday? No thanks!

    Posted 12 days ago
    I'm with Alan on this issue: the proposal is certainly not family friendly.  Moreover, if pre-conference activities have to start on Friday, then many will have to be away from their workplace for 3 days anyway!  The Annual Meeting is one of the more important activities of INFORMS, and this superficial "survey" does not do justice to the issues which have to be considered by the membership and the leadership.  - Suvrajeet

    Suvrajeet Sen (a member who opposed the change to Sunday sessions way back in '90s)
    ISE Department, Univ. of Southern California, Los Angeles, CA

    ------------------------------
    Suvrajeet Sen
    Professor
    University of Southern California
    Los Angeles CA
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  • 3.  RE: Proposal to change INFORMS AM to Saturday-Tuesday? No thanks!

    Posted 10 days ago

    Dear All,

    I'd like to encourage everyone to take the survey about the timing of our Annual Meeting.
    This is an important issue. We all would love to have, as much as possible, everyone to participate the Annual Meeting
    for all the fours days. You most probably remember the returning efforts "to make Wednesday great".

    As we are learning every year, Wednesday participation is much lower than the other days, many colleagues request
    not to schedule their presentation to Wednesday, and the most frequent reasoning is: "I teach and cannot afford to miss 2 classes in a week".
    This information was confirmed by a survey a few years ago.
    Of course this is valid for friends from academia, but the fact is that the vast majority of the Annual meeting is from academia,
    while the ratio is other way around for the Business Analytics meeting in the Spring.

    A Saturday-Tuesday schedule would allow most of us  to enjoy the full Annual Meeting.
    Thanks for all who share your opinion by filling the survey, posting your opinion, or by emailing me.
    Thanks for your support of INFOMRS!

    Tamás Terlaky
    VP Meetings of INFORMS
    George N. and Soteria Kledaras Endowed Chair Professor
    Department of Industrial and Systems Engineering
    Lehigh University



    ------------------------------
    Tamás Terlaky
    Professor, Chair
    Lehigh University
    Bethlehem PA
    terlaky@lehigh.edu
    ------------------------------



  • 4.  RE: Proposal to change INFORMS AM to Saturday-Tuesday? No thanks!

    Posted 9 days ago
    I am neutral on this one, and I regularly attend the Saturday sessions.   Based on what I see so far, it looks like switching to Saturday - Tuesday with the vendor workshops and other preliminary activities on Friday is family unfriendly but teaching friendly.   Even if someone needs to attend the Friday sessions, splitting the 3 weekday part of the conference into the end of one week and beginning of another probably works better for teaching classes.

    So as a group, let's make a decision regarding whether family friendly or teaching friendly  is more important.

    ------------------------------
    Ed Klotz
    Math Programming Specialist
    IBM
    Incline Village NV
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  • 5.  RE: Proposal to change INFORMS AM to Saturday-Tuesday? No thanks!

    Posted 10 days ago
    I agree with Alan. Starting Saturday is not a reasonable option and flies in the face of all of our need for work-life balance. Starting on Sunday is already a major compromise and impost on family and personal time, and extending that to the entire weekend is worsening this situation. The INFORMS Annual Conference is an important and highly valued professional activity, and it seems to me it should take place during days and times appropriate for professional activities. As with all professional activities, we need to plan and work other parts of our professional lives around it.

    ------------------------------
    Natashia Boland
    Professor
    Georgia Institute of Technology
    Atlanta GA
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  • 6.  RE: Proposal to change INFORMS AM to Saturday-Tuesday? No thanks!

    Posted 6 days ago

    Just for those who might have missed the original mail, or it got caught in a spam filter,
    the original call to fill the survey is enclosed here. Please take two minutes to complete this survey
    on a proposed Annual Meeting date change for future meetings.

    Thanks you!
    Tamás Terlaky, V.P. Meetings


    Dear Friend,

    As a past conference attendee, please take two minutes to complete this survey on a proposed future Annual Meeting date change.

    https://www.surveymonkey.com/r/FZ2WHVR

     

    Thank you,

    Tamás Terlaky, V.P. Meetings

     

    INFORMS   5521 Research Park Drive  Suite 200  Catonsville  Maryland   21228   United States You received this email because you are subscribed to Conference Information from INFORMS. Update your email preferences to choose the types of emails you receive.  Unsubscribe from all future emails  



    ------------------------------
    Tamás Terlaky
    Professor, Chair
    Lehigh University
    Bethlehem PA
    terlaky@lehigh.edu
    ------------------------------



  • 7.  RE: Proposal to change INFORMS AM to Saturday-Tuesday? No thanks!

    Posted 9 days ago

    Alan:

    I totally agree with you.  I have separately voiced my opposition to this proposal in private emails to Ron Askin, the previous VP of Meetings who asked the question of exhibitors 2 years ago, and to the current VP of Meetings, Tamas Terlaky, after receiving the present survey.

    The questions that you stated should have been included in the survey.

    As a practitioner, and a person who previously managed people responsible for a booth in the Exhibit Hall, I can tell you that asking people to "work" on Saturdays and Sundays does not always get received well.

    I understand that there are many people in the academic community who cannot commit to attending the entire meeting if it is held during the week because of their teaching duties.  Maybe it is time to consider structuring the meeting around a "theme per day" idea.  For example, you could have optimization talks on Monday and Tuesday and talks on queueing on Wednesdays and Thursdays.  Most people wouldn't need to attend talks in both of those areas, so they'd only come for the days related to their area of interest.




    ------------------------------
    -Irv Lustig
    Optimization Principal
    Princeton Consultants
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  • 8.  RE: Proposal to change INFORMS AM to Saturday-Tuesday? No thanks!

    Posted 2 days ago
    This survey was poorly designed.  It asks whether the change would make me better able to present on Tuesday but not whether I would be more likely to attend on the first day (Saturday).  I oppose the change and agree with Irv that the conference could be better designed to emphasize different topics on different days, rather than expecting everyone to attend for four full days.
    Sarah Ryan
    Professor, Iowa State University

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    Sarah Ryan
    Professor
    Iowa State University
    Ames IA
    ------------------------------