Report from the International Commission for Acoustics for 2004 and 2005
The main event organized under the auspices of the International Commission for Acoustics in 2004 was the 18 th International Congress on Acoustics held from 4 to 9 April 2004 in Kyoto, Japan. The objective of the triennial International Congress is to bring together all those working in the many sub-field of acoustics and enable all acousticians to gain a broad perspective of the state of the art in the discipline as whole. A total of 1332 researchers from 47 countries participated with 91 accompanying persons. No less than 1037 papers covering all fields of acoustics were listed in the program, these including 4 plenary papers, 14 keynote papers, together with large number of invited papers, contributed papers and poster presentations. Also presented were exhibitions from industries, academic presentations from research institutes and acoustical demonstrations for education. ICA Early Career Awards were presented to Prof. Timothy Leighton (UK) and Prof. Oleg Sapozhnikov (Russia). ICA Young Scientists Conference Attendance Grants were awarded to 16 young researchers in order to attend the Kyoto Congress. This Congress provided an outstanding forum for the participants to exchange information on research and education in all aspects of acoustics and was superbly organized by the Acoustical Society of Japan.
The International Commission for Acoustics (ICA) held Board meetings in Kyoto, Japan on 3 and 9 April 2004, before and after the 18 th International Congress on Acoustics. The total number of member societies of ICA is now 44, following the acceptance by the Board of an application for membership of ICA from the Belarusian Acoustical Society. Four specialist symposia were supported financially by ICA during 2004 and reports on these were received. After presentations from three candidate Acoustical Societies, Sydney was chosen as the congress venue for ICA2010 and will be organized by the Australian Acoustical Society. A report on progress in preparation for ICA2007 to be held in Madrid in 2007 was also presented by the Spanish Acoustical Society.
The General Assembly of the Commission was held on 7 April 2004 in Kyoto. President Daigle reported on the activities of ICA and Treasurer Mellert reported the finance and future budget of ICA. Prof. Philip A. Nelson was elected President and Prof. Sonoko Kuwano and Prof. Hugo Fastl were elected Secretary General and Treasurer, respectively. Also the other board members for 2004-2007 were elected. President Daigle provided some background description on International Scientific Unions and lead a discussion on how to promote the ICA to the level of an International Union. During the discussion, the Member Societies represented at the General Assembly confirmed their support for an application for membership of ICSU.
ICA submitted an application for membership to ICSU in March 2005. The application had been supported by IUPAP following the Council and Commission Chairs meeting held in Mumbai during October 2004 and subsequent correspondence between President Nelson, Past President Daigle and the IUPAP Secretariat. A draft of the application had been sent to all existing International Scientific Union Members of ICSU and a number of National Scientific Members. The final application had been supported by the International Union of Geodesy and Geophysics, the International Union of Geological Sciences, the International Geographical Union, the International Union of Soil Science, the International Mathematical Union, the International Union of Biochemistry and Molecular Biology, the International Union of Pharmacology, and the International Union of Crystallography. National Scientific members supporting the application included those from Canada, Poland, Spain, Germany, China and Russia.
ICA has been offered Associate Membership of ICSU and the ICA Board approved acceptance of the offer at the Board meeting held in Rio de Janeiro on 6 August 2005. Also the Board discussed the possibility of applying for full membership of ICSU in the future and it was recognized that much still had to be done to unify international activities in Acoustics. For example, there are a number of regional organizations such as the European Acoustical Association (EAA), which is a consortium of European acoustical societies, the Western Pacific Commission on Acoustics (WESPAC), and the Ibero-American Federation of Acoustics (FIA). These organizations hold regional congresses in Europe, Western Asia, and South America, respectively, on a regular basis. All three of these regional organizations expressed their full support for Union membership within ICSU. There are also other international organizations active in acoustics. For example, the International Institute of Noise Control Engineering (I-INCE) was founded in 1974 as a worldwide consortium of organizations concerned with noise control, acoustics and vibration. Thus, I-INCE has a structure similar to the current ICA with strong overlap in membership. The I-INCE sponsors the INTER-NOISE series of Congresses on an annual basis. These congresses normally assemble 800-1000 participants. In addition to these activities, the International Institute of Sound and Vibration (IIAV) holds an annual congress that is attended by a similar number of participants. The stated purpose of the IIAV is to advance the science of acoustics and vibration by creating an international scientific society that is responsive to the needs of scientists and engineers in all countries whose primary interests are in the fields of acoustics and vibration. The IIAV is open to individual membership and now has about 500 members. Both I-INCE and IIAV were also fully supportive of ICA’s application for Union membership within ICSU.
New associate members of ICA for 2005-2008 representing FIA, EAA, WESPAC, I-INCE and IIAV were therefore invited to the ICA Board Meeting in Rio and their membership of the Board was approved, together with representatives of IUTAM, ICA2007 and ICA2010. After further discussion regarding the potential for enhancing coordination and cooperation in international activities in acoustics, the ICA Board agreed a strategy for further bringing together the supporting organizations and this is to be progressed during the forthcoming year.
Treasurer Fastl reported the present status of the finance of ICA and the budget for ICA at the Rio Board meeting. The total budget of ICA for the three years (2004-2007) is 29500 Euros. This is sufficient to cover the present activities of ICA. ICA supported three regional symposia in 2005 as of August 2005; they are “the 17 th International Symposium on Nonlinear Acoustics” to be held in the USA, 18-22 July, “Speech Analysis, Synthesis and Recognition – Applications of Phonetic Research” to be held in Poland, 19-23 September and “High Intensity Acoustic Waves in Modern Technological and Medical Applications” to be held in Russia, 14-15 November.
Philip A. Nelson (President)
Sonoko Kuwano (General Secretary) September 2005