From the President of USAEE








Peter R. Hartley

Professor & Baker Institute Fellow

Rice University (Houston, Texas)

 

Excitement is building as the 2012 North American Conference in Austin draws near. Your conference organizing committee has drawn up a very interesting plenary session program, which you can view at http://www.usaee.org/usaee2012/program_2.aspx.

We have also had an extraordinary number of submissions for the concurrent sessions and the poster competition.

One innovation in the Austin Conference that we are particularly pleased about is that we have allowed for a new category of concurrent session presentations on applied case studies in energy economics or policy. We hope to include this feature in new conferences and have decided to introduce a different submission and evaluation procedure for these studies that we hope will be conducive to more of our non-university members taking part in the concurrent sessions at our annual conferences.

A Case Study competition for students, which asks teams of students to analyze an applied problem in energy economics and policy, is another new event at this year’s conference that we hope will be extended to future conferences.

The post-conference workshop on unconventional oil and gas has also generated some interest. The Central Texas chapter also has organized a number of interesting social and technical events.

If you have not already done so, please make plans to attend and catch up with old friends or to meet knowledgeable and interesting new people who share your interest in energy economics and policy issues.

Planning is also well underway for the 2013 North American Conference to be held in Anchorage, Alaska in late July. We are planning many interesting sessions with some focus on issues particularly relevant to Alaska, such as energy exploration and production in the Arctic, fiscal regimes in energy-rich regions, and electricity supply in sparsely populated and remote areas. However, there will also be plenty of discussion on topics such as unconventional oil and gas, electricity market design, energy efficiency and the environmental consequences of energy production and use. The committee is also looking into some tremendous tour options, while having a meeting in Alaska in July, of course, also provides an opportunity for you to take your holiday touring some of the fabulous Alaskan wild areas.

The USAEE conference committee is also actively seeking options for the location of the 2014 North American Conference. If you have any good ideas, please let us know.

I would also like to take this opportunity to mention a few issues related to the IAEE. The IAEE Council held a meeting at the Perth International Conference in late June. While we are only beginning to discuss the location of the 2014 North American Conference, the IAEE chose Antalya, Turkey as the location for the 2015 International Conference. The IAEE 2013 International Conference will be held in Daegu, South Korea and the 2014 International Conference will be in Prague, Czech Republic.

The team planning that conference put on a very impressive show in Perth describing the conference venue and program. It looks like it will be an extremely well organized conference and well worth attending. Unfortunately, it will be held only about five and half weeks before our Anchorage conference. However, it will have a focus on Asian issues and thus present a very different set of topics than the Anchorage conference. We hope that many of you will plan on attending both conferences.

As a result of increasing costs for the IAEE, the IAEE Council also decided to increase student dues by $10, regular Affiliate and Direct member dues by $20, and Institutional dues by $500. The dues increase takes place immediately. The USAEE Council is investigating ways we might try to lessen the effects of this increase for US members. One option being discussed is to allow members to take the Energy Journal in electronic format only (the new journal Economics of Energy and Environmental Policy will be electronic format only from 2014) in return for a reduction in fees. You will have a chance to give your opinion on this and other issues in a forthcoming IAEE member survey. Please look for it coming in your email soon and give us your feedback.

Speaking of surveys let me end by thanking all of you who participated in our recent member salary survey. We collected some interesting information that we hope might be of special use to members making hiring and salary decisions. We are planning to extend the survey next year to also ask questions about resource support for economist members working in industry or government.

We look forward to seeing you in Austin. Please also come along to the general members meeting if you are at the Austin conference. It will be held at 5:30 pm, Tuesday, right after the final dual plenary session of the day and immediately before the evening Reception.

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