Saturday, June 14, 2008

Working on the Space Plan and Budget

Much of my effort this last week for SIGCSE 2009 was spent on coming up with a first pass space plan and a draft budget. The big question of the space plan was: Do we now have enough space contracted to cover everything that happened at SIGCSE 2008 and everything additional that we want at SIGCSE 2009? I read multiple contracts and got to know the Chattanooga Conference Center layout pretty well.

It's an interesting place. The design is made to look like a old-style railroad station, in reference to the famous "Chattanooga Choo-Choo." An advantage of this design for a conference center is that everything is on one level. There's a big hallway where everyone will be eventually and anyone can be found. I'm hoping that it will lead to more discussions and the serendipitous meetings that are the hallmark of a successful conference. (My PhD advisor, Elliot Soloway, would tell me as a graduate student that "The success of a conference doesn't depend on what sessions you go to, but who you're talking to when you skip sessions.")

The budget for the SIGCSE conference is huge. Almost a half million dollars will come and go through our account before it's all through. (We're hoping for a slightly black residue leftover in the account when it's all said-and-done, and I'm sure that Barbara Owens is also hoping for that!) Income really only comes from three sources: registrations, supporters/exhibitors, and workshops. It's the expenditures that are complicated. They cover a wide range of items--paying for A/V and food, doing criminal background checks for people working in the Kids' Camp, shipping people to and from Chattanooga for the big Program Committee meeting in October, and so on. We're grateful that Susan and JD have left us such great notes from last year (and are willing to answer our continued questions via email!)

Sue's work the last few weeks is showing up on the Web site and in your mailboxes these days. She's been working with our Publications Chair, Tom Cortina, to get the Call for Participation out to everyone physically. She's been working with the whole Program Committee and our Webmaster, Lester McCann, to get the website ready for everyone. PLEASE BE SURE TO NOTICE THE CHANGED DUE DATE FOR SIGCSE THIS YEAR! It's late August, rather than early September.

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