Chairman’s report for 2019, for the 2020 AGM

Ladies and gentlemen,

Below is the Chairman’s report for the IMCOS Annual General Meeting, which was initially scheduled for Friday 5 June 2020, to inform the membership on the year 2019’s effects on the Society.  Due to the Corona situation, the June 2020 AGM was cancelled and postponed to later in the year.

As face-to-face meetings are currently subject to restrictions, both in terms of travel and congregation, the Executive Committee has decided to replace the usual AGM by email and email voting in order to meet the requirement as stipulated in Article 14 of the IMCOS Constitution.

Chairman’s report

The Executive committee has executed all normal tasks during its 4 regular Committee meetings during the year 2019, all taking place in London. The meetings were complemented with extensive e-mail correspondence and telephone calls as was appropriate for the subjects at hand.

The June weekend took place as in previous years with the IMCOS Annual Dinner on Friday with a Malcolm Young Lecture preceding the dinner and the Helen Wallis Award being awarded to Dr Juergen Espenhorst from Germany. The Malcolm Young Lecture was given by Professor Mario Cams from Macao University and concerned the source material used for Martini/ Blaeu’s Atlas of China; it revealed a number of new insights and was very professionally delivered indeed. The Saturday AGM took place again in the Royal Geographical Society Building, the meeting room being made available free of charge by the organisers of the London Map Fair, which was starting after the IMCOS AGM.

IMCOS also made use again of a free stand at the LMF, both on Saturday and all of Sunday. The stand was organised by Ian and Jenny Harvey, with other Committee members manning the stand, as scheduled. A local event was organised in Oxford, including the usual Map Collectors meeting, which, to our regret, was not visited in numbers.

In 2018, the Annual General Meeting approved  a hike in subscription fee, in anticipation of  Brexit effects, maybe also affecting rates of exchange. The Annual Accounts were expected to compensate for the black zero in the preceding year (2018), looming red figures for 2019  and create some leeway for keeping the subscription rate stable for a number of years to come. As, however, the yearly IMCOS Symposium could not be held, lacking offers for organising it, a number of budgeted expenses did not materialise, resulting in a sizeable profit over 2019. The yearly contribution towards the cost of organising the Warburg Lectures was continued for 2019 again. Please consult the Annual Accounts as provided by our Honorary Treasurer Jeremy Edwards for details.

The IMCOS Journal Editor, Ljiljana Ortolja- Baird managed to produce an excellent IMCOS Journal on time, for which the Executive Committee is grateful indeed.

IMCOS as a Society is financially sound and the Committee expects that this condition will continue over the coming years. By the time that this 2019 Annual Report becomes available to the AGM , now to be held in November 2020, the results of the Corona pandemic have become manifest, with most IMCOS general activities being cancelled or postponed due to either regulations or common sense. The final effects of the pandemic will be subject of the 2020  Annual Report, to be presented in 2021.  The Executive Committee and the Chairman trust and hope that our members and their loved ones will be able to avoid any serious Covid-19 implications.

Hans Kok, IMCoS Chairman