Results of the Vote

The steering committee for the Symposium on Computational Geometry has concluded its third and final vote on the future relationship between SOCG and ACM. Voting was open for three weeks, from June 24 through July 15, and was made available to all subscribers to the compgeom-announce mailing list.

A total of 202 votes were cast, more than twice as many as in the previous vote.  Here are the results for the main question:

  • I prefer to stay with ACM: 68 votes (34%)
  • I prefer to leave ACM: 134 votes (66%)

Results for the other poll questions are summarized below.

In light of the decisive majority in favor of leaving ACM, the SOCG steering committee (Mark de Berg, David Eppstein, Jeff Erickson, Joseph Mitchell, and Günter Rote), the 2015 local organizers (Bettina Speckman and Marc van Kreveld), and the 2015 program committee co-chairs (Lars Arge and János Pach) have unanimously agreed to immediately move forward with independence, starting with the June 2015 conference in Eindhoven.  SOCG 2014 will be the last iteration of the conference affiliated with ACM.

On behalf of the steering committee, I would like to thank everyone in the community for their input.  I would especially like to thank Paul Beame, Donna Cappo, Wm. Randolph Franklin, Sándor Fekete, Wayne Graves, Pat Morin, and Suresh Venkatasubramanian for their significant contributions to the discussion blog prior to the vote.

The steering committee will publish a more detailed public announcement soon. I also plan to post a more detailed analysis of the voting results later this week.

Now the real work begins!

1. What is your preference for the future organization of SOCG? [202 responses]

  • 134 votes (66%): I prefer to leave ACM and organize SOCG as an independent conference with proceedings published in LIPIcs and with financial backing provided through other means, starting as soon as practically possible.
  • 68 votes (34%): I prefer to stay with ACM, with the understanding that ACM will approve all good-faith requests for in-cooperation status outside the United States. Refusal of in-cooperation status outside the US triggers our immediate departure from ACM.

2. If you voted to stay with ACM, please select your main reason. [72 responses] (A few voters who voted to leave ACM also answered this question.)

  • 46 votes (64%): Prestige of being affiliated with a professional organization
  • 9 votes (13%): Having proceedings in the digital library of a professional organization
  • 8 votes (11%): Other
  • 6 votes (8%): Maintaining continuity
  • 3 votes (4%): Financial backing and insurance

3. If you voted to leave ACM, please select your main reason. [133 responses]

  • 68 votes (51%): Open and free access to the proceedings
  • 23 votes (17%): Reducing costs for the attendees
  • 17 votes (13%): Reducing administrative overhead for the local organizers
  • 14 votes (11%): Other (most common response: “all of the above”)
  • 11 votes (8%): Increased flexibility

4. Independent of your vote in question 1, would you be willing to help out as a volunteer in the event that SOCG does go solo? [185 responses]

  • 92 votes (50%): Maybe
  • 55 votes (30%): Yes
  • 38 votes (21%): No

5. What is your current academic status? [193 responses]

  • 109 votes (56%): tenured faculty member
  • 26 votes (13%): postdoc
  • 23 votes (12%): untenured faculty member
  • 21 votes (11%): PhD student
  • 14 votes (7%): other

6. How many times have you attended SOCG in the last ten years? [194 responses]

  • 62 votes (32%): 1 or 2 times
  • 48 votes (25%): 3 or 4 times
  • 47 votes (24%): At least 5 times
  • 37 votes (19%): Never

Vote distribution by country:

  • 54 votes (27%): United States
  • 27 votes (13%): Germany
  • 20 votes (11%): France
  • 16 votes (8%): Canada
  • 15 votes (7%): Netherlands
  • 6–10 votes each: Austria, Brazil, Japan, Switzerland
  • 1–5 votes each: Australia, Belgium, China, Denmark, Greece, Hong Kong, Hungary, India, Iran, Israel, Italy, Portugal, Russia, Singapore, Slovenia, South Korea, Spain, Sweden, United Kingdom

About Jeff Erickson

I'm a professor of computer science at the University of Illinois, Urbana-Champaign and the chair of the steering committee for the International Symposium on Computational Geometry.
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4 Responses to Results of the Vote

  1. Daniel Reem says:

    Dear Jeff,

    Thanks for the information. I want to thank you and the whole steering committee for the time, energy and efforts invested in this process. Regardless of the results, in my opinion it has been a very transparent, open, and fair process, which has enabled everyone interested (including key figures from all sides) to contribute. There has been enough time for considering most of the relevant issues and for making the actual voting. I hope that future voting processes of this kind will be as fair as this one has been.

  2. So much for the “Europe is pulling us away from the ACM” argument :)

    • Jeff Erickson says:

      Actually, that argument has legs. Among the 53 US voters, a slight majority (29-24) voted to stay with ACM.

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