Five members have been elected to the IOP’s Council

18 July 2014

Five IOP members have been elected to the Institute’s Council in a ballot of all corporate members. The five were Lisa Jardine-Wright, Angela Newing, Trevor Cross, Kevin McGuigan and Mark Wrigley, who will all serve as ordinary members of Council from 1 October 2014 until 30 September 2018.

The ballot closed on 16 July and the results were announced at the Institute’s annual general meeting (AGM), which was held in London on 18 July and chaired by IOP president Frances Saunders.

Six candidates were standing for the five vacancies on Council and the results were:

Lisa Jardine-Wright2,297
Angela Newing2,047
Trevor Cross1,840
Kevin McGuigan1,753
Mark Wrigley1,726
Martin Underwood1,388
Total number of unique votes cast2,781
Total of voter codes issued16,864
Turnout16.5%

The AGM also voted to adopt the annual report of the IOP’s Council, which was introduced by the IOP's honorary secretary, Prof. Stuart Palmer. He said 2013 had been a very successful year, in which the number of members grew by 5% to well over 50,000. The year had seen substantial involvement by members through the IOP's groups, branches, and activities, he said, and there were plans to increase such involvement.

The IOP's Opportunity Physics fundraising campaign had been launched, with a target of raising £10m over five years, he said, and educational projects such as the Stimulating Physics Network had attracted new funding. IOP Publishing had published more than 28,000 articles in its existing journals and new titles were being launched, while the company was also moving into the publication of e-books. A new strategy for the Institute was being discussed by the IOP's Council, following the AGM, he said.

The AGM voted to adopt the Institute’s accounts, which were introduced by the honorary treasurer, Prof. Julian Jones. He said the IOP's income had increased by £10m since the previous year to £63m, of which £7.3m had come from the sale of the leases on 76 and 80 Portland Place and the purchase of a freehold property in London's King's Cross. Publishing had generated around £47m, compared to £43m the previous year, of which around £12m came to the IOP in gift aid – a 13% increase on the year before. Other income and administrative efficiencies had enabled the IOP to transfer £2.8m to reserves, he said. The IOP's net assets had also grown through its investment portfolio and through actuarial revaluation of the defined benefits pensions scheme.

A resolution to appoint BDO Stoy Hayward LLP as auditors until the next AGM was approved by 1124 votes to 23 (98% in favour). A resolution to increase the Chartered Physicist registration fee from £20 to £25 from 1 January 2015 was also approved, by 945 votes to 205 (82.2% in favour).

A resolution to increase the Institute’s membership subscription rates for several categories of membership from 1 January 2015 was approved by 988 votes to 157 (86.3% in favour). The subscription will remain unchanged at £15 for IOPimember, those whose income is less than £12,500, and undergraduate students who choose to receive print editions of Physics World. The subscription for postgraduate students is also unchanged at £21.

Fees will increase by £1 per year for members with between three and six years in paid employment, associate members, retired members aged 60-plus, and members in part-time employment with an income of more than £12,500. The fees will increase by £2 per year for affiliate members, members with seven or more years in paid employment, and fellows.

Digital membership for undergraduate students is free. Membership remains free for retired people currently aged 70 or over, but retired people reaching the age of 70 in 2015 or later will be asked on reaching that age to pay the same fee as those aged 60-plus.

Following the formal close of the meeting, the IOP's chief executive, Prof. Paul Hardaker, gave an update on plans for the refurbishment of the Institute's new building in King's Cross. A planning application was being submitted to Islington Council's planners on 28 July and the outcome of their discussions would be known by mid to late September, he said. This would give an expected date of around June 2016 for the new building being ready to move into.

He described some of the features proposed for the building, including a new saw-tooth roof for collection of rainwater, photovoltaic cells, heat pumps in the basement and a floor-to-roof glass entrance. There were plans to re-establish windows in what had been retail shopfronts where the building faced onto Caledonian Road, making the premises more visible to the public, a cafe aimed at drawing members of the public in and a space for “Cafe Scientifique”-type events, as well as direct access to an exhibition space, he said. Prof. Hardaker said the IOP would keep members informed on progress through the member newsletter.