MINUTES OF THE GENERAL MEMBERSHIP MEETING ASSOCIATION FOR SOCIAL ECONOMICS
January 3, 2015
Boston, MA

The general membership meeting began at 4:45 p.m. in the Boston Marriott Copley, Grand Ballroom Salon A, with President Mark D. White presiding. 

Secretary’s Report: 

Secretary Elba Brown-Collier reported that the following persons were elected in 2014 to serve on the Executive Council for 2015:
     President                           Ellen Mutari, 2015
     President-Elect                   Giuseppe Fontana, 2015
     Vice-President                    Quentin Woden, 2015
     Trustees                            Andrew Mearman, 2015-2019
                                             Janice L. Peterson, 2015-2019

     Southwest Regional Director          Aparna Mitra, 2015-2017
     Mid-West Regional Director           Bruce Pietrykowski, 2015 – 2017

Secretary Collier expressed thanks to Dan Finn and Mark Hayes for their five year service (2010 – 2014) as trustees.

The 2015 list of the members of the Executive Council was provided to the group.

The minutes from the January, 2014, General Membership meeting were provided to the members. The motion was made and seconded that the minutes be approved. The motion carried. 

ASE/ASSA Liaison Report:

Robert LaJeunesse reported the mean attendance for the sessions at the 2014 ASE/ASSA meetings was about 23. However, 5 of the 8 sessions had fewer than 10 attendees and six of the 8 had less than 15 attendees. Of course, attendance in all sessions was down due to weather conditions. Over a five year period, one third of our sessions had less than 10 attendees and on half had less than 15. He encouraged us to attend the meetings.

Bruce Collier commended Robert for his change in the format of the reception at the plenary session.

Treasurer’s Report:  

Treasurer Bruce Collier presented his report. He provided the Statement of Receipts and Disbursements and Balances for the fiscal year ending November 30, 2014. The following is a summary of the report which covers the period from 12/1/2013 through 11/30/2014.

Receipts and Disbursements:

      Cash and Investments 12/1/13                                                    $ 277,215.00|
      Prepaid Expenses for FY 2015 (Plenary Speaker)                                 (3,000.00)

             Receipts                                  -                 $   77,572.12
             Disbursements                         -                     58,227.29

           Increase in Cash                                                                      $  19,344.83                       

             Cash and Investments 11/30/2014                                         $ 293,559.83

Details are provided upon request.                       

Bruce Collier presented the report from 2013 for comparison purposes. He also presented a budget for the fiscal year 2015.   The 2015 budgeted receipts were $98,900 and the budgeted disbursements were $89,799.00 for a net increase in cash of $9,101.00.   The 2015 included estimates for the World Congress and Summer School to be held in June, 2015. Again details are available upon request.

The motion was made and seconded that the treasurer’s report be accepted. The motion carried.

RSE Editor’s Report:

Robert McMaster reported for the Review of Social Economy. He provided a nine page report reviewing the developments in 2014. A summary of some of the important features of this report are provided here. You may contact Elba Brown-Collier for a copy of the complete report.

In 2014 there were 131 submissions, 67% of which were from authors outside the United States. The acceptance rate was approximately 16%. The backlog of accepted but not yet published articles is some two issues.

The Helen Potter award recipient was announced. The 2014 recipient is Peter-Wim Zuidhof for his paper “Thinking Like an Economist: The Neoliberal Politics of the Economics Textbook” published in the June, 2014 issue of the Review of Social Economy.

Robert reported some changes in the editorial board with the addition of several notable scholars including Andrea Bernardi (Manchester Metropolitan University) and Lanse Minkler (University of Connecticut).

A new Editorial Advisory Board composed of a selection of members of the Editorial Board and the ASE President, President-Elect and Vice President, will begin working in January, 2015, to further strengthen the relationship between the Association and the journal. The members of the Editorial Board serving on this Board are Philip Arestis, John B. Davis, George DeMartino, Giuseppe Fontana, David George, Lanse Minkler, Julie A. Nelson, Steve Pressman, Irene van Staveren and Mark D. White.

Robert reported on the status of the activities aimed toward re-entry of the journal in the ISI listing. This was one of the primary aims expressed in the current contract between ASE and the editorial team. The report listed three issues critical to preparing for an application to re-enter the ISI listing: (1) Clarifying and emphasizing RoSE’s unique identity. Specifically we wish to attract high-quality work in the JEL categories A13 – Relation of Economics to Social Values, and D63 – Equity, Justice, Inequality, and Other Normative Criteria and Measurement; (2) Arranging three consecutive issues likely to achieve high citation rates; and (3) Improving the international diversity of the editorial board. Two of these, (1) and (3), are in place. Taylor and Francis has expressed concern about the second of these. There was considerable discussion at this point in the report about the citations that Taylor and Francis included in their “mock” impact factor. They do not include self-citations. Editor McMaster asked all to try to cite articles in the RoSE as much as possible. 

FORUM Editor’s Report:

Editor Wolfram Elsner reported that the backlog inherited from the previous editorial team had been fully published in 2013, however this led to a delay in publishing more recent submissions. For Volume 43 (2014) the lag from final acceptance to printed publication was 16 months. Despite decreasing acceptance rates, papers have been accepted to fill print volumes reaching until 2016(2). This may mean another fourth extra issue is necessary. The rejection rate from 2012 – 2014 was 66%. In 2013 it was 64% and in 2014 it was 68%. The editorial team has put special emphasis on Special Issues and Symposia in order to increase the visibility of the Forum. Alex Lascaux has finalized a symposium on trust and Paolo Ramazzotti has finalized a symposium on “neo-liberal policies”.

The Patrick Welch Award for the best paper in the Forum for 2014 is to be presented to Irene van Staveren, Ellen Webbink, Arjan de Haan, and Roberto Foa for their paper “The Last Mile in Analyzing Wellbeing and Poverty: Indices of Social Development” published in Issue 1 of Volume 43 (2014).

Changes in the editorial team included the departure of Will Milberg as Co-Editor (to assume his duties as Dean of the New School). Eugenia Correa (Mexico), Svetlana Kirdina (Russia), Mary Wrenn (USA/UK) and Chi-ang Lin (Taiwan) have agreed to join the Forum’s Editorial Team to serve as Associate Editors. Cecilia Winters and Phil O’Hara also have agreed to serve as Associate Editors, while Paolo Ramazzotti has agreed to serve as “standby”/deputy Managing Editor.

Regional Directors’ Reports:

West – David Plante - President Mark White announced that David had graciously agreed to take over the position of West Regional Director to complete the term of Fred Lee. David reported that he had worked with the Western Social Science Association to participate in sessions for AFIT to include papers submitted for the ASE sessions.

Eastern - Michael Murray (Report provided to the Executive Council in their December Conference Call) - Michael reported that at the end of October he issued additional call for papers for the EEA meetings in the spring to include special sessions in Memory of Fred Lee. He received 11 submissions and had placed papers in three sessions. 

International – Helena Lopes (Report provided to the Executive Council in their December Conference Call) - In 2014 again my main activity consisted in organizing parallel sessions at the EAEPE Conference for the Research Action Line (RALM) “Social Economics” that I have been coordinating with Wilfred Dolfsma. The 2014 EAEPE Conference was held from November6th - 8th in Nicosia, Cyprus, around the general theme “Unemployment and austerity in Mediterranean countries”.  The number of abstracts proposed to RAM was particularly high this year: 15 abstracts were proposed from which 13 were accepted.  This allowed organizing 4 RAM sessions(the local organizers proposed organizing 4 sessions with 3 papers instead of 3 sessions/4papers).  All the sessions initially scheduled took actually place and only in one session two presenters did not show.  Around 20 people attended the sessions.  According to the chairs and discussants of the sessions, the atmosphere was friendly and cooperative and the comments received very constructive.

William R. Waters Research Grant Program:

Submitted by Giuseppe Fontana, vice-president, on behalf of Ellen Mutari, president-elect, and Mark D. White, president

In summer letters and posters were sent to a total of over 70 schools, mostly in the US, but also in the UK, and continental Europe. Using personal contacts letters and posters were also sent to appropriate schools in South America, Africa, and Asia. The grant was also publicized on blogs, and Twitter accounts, and several e-mail lists, including our listserv, the PKSG list, the heterodox list, the IAFFE and URPE lists.

This year we received 25 applications for the William Waters Grant, mostly from the US, but also from UK (4), Canada (3), Italy (1) and Australia (1). After careful reading of the applications, the majority of the committee has settled on two scholars that was felt are most deserving of funding from the ASE:

Caroline Hossein, Untenured faculty below the rank of associate professor at York University, “Canada Gro’ wid people: Understanding Canada’s Black Social Economy (Reference letters from Dr. Roberta Rice, School of Languages and Literatures, Guelph University; and Dr. Russell Benjamin, Department of Political Science, Northeastern Illinois University)

Francisco Fernandez de Castro, Graduate student at the University of California – Irvine, "Conditional Cash Transfers and Food Poverty Alleviation: The Case of Oportunidades Program in the City of San Luis Rio Colorado, Sonora, Mexico" (Reference letters from Seth Pipkin, Department of Planning, Policy and Design, University of California – Irvine; and Nina Bandelj, Department of Sociology, University of California – Irvine)

Each of the above candidates was awarded a William Waters Grants in the amount of $5,000.

2014 Awards Committee Report:

Jonathan Wight announced that the recipient of the Thomas Divine Award for 2014 is Irene van Staveren from Erasmus University Rotterdam.

The 2014 recipient of the Ludwig Mai Service Award is Bruce Pietrykowski of the American University – Washington, D.C.

Again there was discussion of the need to increase the amounts given for each of the awards. It was suggested that Wolfram make some recommendations on this structure to provide to the Executive Council for their consideration.

Old Business:

World Congress Report - Bob Dimand announced that arrangements were going smoothly for the 15th World Congress of Social Economics to be held at Brock University at St. Catharines, Ontario, Canada. His University is providing the meeting rooms free of charge and he has applied for a grant from Brock for payment of the plenary speakers. Bob announced that he has received an agreement from Kari Polanyi Levitt, Professor Emerita, McGill University to present the Keynote Address. He is still seeking confirmation from Robert Skidelsky to present the plenary address. He has arranged for the dinner to be held at a very nice restaurant and there will be buses available to transport participants to the dinner with a short stop at Niagara Falls. The theme for the World Congress is “Doing Social Economics” and it was announced that the submission form would soon be on the ASE web page. The Congress is to meet June 22-24, 2015.

The World Congress Summer School committee has been formed. It is composed of John B. Davis, Marquette University; Jonathan B. Wight, University of Richmond; Tonia Warnecke, Rollins College; and Mark Gerard Hayes, Durham University.

Remarks of Outgoing President:

President Mark White stated that it had been a pleasure to be President of ASE for the past year. As such his main initiative had been to increase the online presence for ASE and Social Economic issues. He stated that he still felt the use of blogs, etc. could increase the publicity and visibility of ASE. He asked members to provide content for the blogs and suggested that we create an email address for social economics.

Mark then turned the meeting over to the incoming president Ellen Mutari.

Remarks of Incoming President:

Incoming President Ellen Mutari thanked Mark White for his service and the group applauded. Ellen stated that her first priority was to preside over the 15th World Congress and the associated Summer School. She expects that will take most of her time until June. She also advised that she was very enthusiastic about the ASE U-tube channel she is setting up with the initial content being the video of Guy Standing’s address in the plenary session, Mark White’s Presidential Address at the Breakfast and the panel discussion organized on “Policy Priorities in Response to Labor Flexibilization”chaired by Deborah M. Figart, Richard Stockton College all at the ASE/ASSA meetings in Boston.

Program for January 2016 Meetings in San Francisco:

Giuseppe Fontana did not have a prepared Call for Papers to submit to the group, but he presented his idea for the theme of the ASE sessions for their input. He suggested the theme: Financialization, Sustainability and Economic Stability. He hoped to emphasize the structural changes from the 1980’s on in the financial markets and the implication for economic growth and other social issues. The group was receptive to his suggestion and he advised he would provide the written copy for approval by the Executive Council by email.

Committee Assignments for 2015:

             2015 Executive Council Nominations assigned to Jonathan Wight.
             2015 Awards Nomination Assigned to Mark D. White.

New Business:

Ellen Mutari announced that Elba Brown-Collier and Bruce Collier are retiring at the end of 2015 from their positions as Executive Secretary and Treasurer, respectively. Ellen expressed thanks to Bruce and Elba for their many years of service. The members in attendance also expressed their appreciation with a warmly received applause. Ellen announced that she had formed an ad hoc committee to seek replacements for these positions. The committee is to be chaired by Steve Pressman, and will include Deb Figart and Zohreh Emami as members. Elba and Bruce agreed to assist the committee in finding replacements and in communicating the details of their jobs to both the committee and to the persons selected to fill the positions.

Ellen submitted a proposal to the group to begin a practice of naming the World Congress Summer School fellowships in honor of retired and/or deceased members who have made important contributions to the association and social economics. She proposed 4 initial named fellowships named for Edward O’Boyle, Betsy Jane Clary, Marianne A. Ferber and Frederic S. Lee. There was much discussion about details as to how this would be advertised and communicated to potential applicants for the fellowships. As the time for the meeting was getting short, it was agreed that Ellen could submit this proposal to the members of the Executive Council and solicit their vote as soon as possible. There was general agreement to this suggestion.

There being no further business, the meeting adjourned at 6:30 p.m.

Respectfully submitted,

Elba K. Brown-Collier
Executive Secretary