Minutes of SIGCOMM EC Conference Call November 2, 2009

Minutes of the monthly teleconference of the SIGCOMM EC

Attendees: Bruce Davie, Henning Schulzrinne, Jaudelice de Oliveira, Neil
Spring, Mark Crovella, Tilman Wolf

1. SIG Governing Board Meeting & SIG leader orientation

Bruce and Ramesh attended the new SIG leader orientation in New York
and then attended the SIG Governing Board meeting the next day, along
with Henning. A few observations from the 2 days:
- Many SIGs experience common issues, and there is a desire to share
experience and best practices among the SIG leaders. ACM undertook to
set up a wiki for this purpose.
- A particularly common pain point is organizing conferences outside
the U.S. It appears that ACM could provide more services than we
typically ask for, and they are taking active steps to improve their
presence outside the U.S. (e.g. opening offices, forming an ACM
Europe committee, etc.)
- It was pointed out that the "ACM tax" that appears on conference
budgets really isn't a fee for conference services, but rather the
way ACM collects money from the SIGs to pay for the cost of
supporting the SIGs. We (the EC) should make this point more clear to
conference organizers.

2. Sigcomm 2011

The EC has received two proposals for Sigcomm 2011 in North America,
both of which have much to recommend them. Evaluation of the proposals
will continue this month with the hope to make a selection at the
December EC meeting. It is expected that the new Technical Steering
Committee proposal could be put in place for Sigcomm 2011.

3. Budget surplus / reserves

Having now built up a reserve fund larger than the amount required by
ACM, we would like to think about ways to spend some of that surplus
to help the SIGCOMM community. Ideas discussed on the call included:
- Use for conferences
While conferences can not plan to run a deficit, SIGCOMM can offer to
pay certain costs for conferences (eg travel grants, ACM overhead). We
can also offer travel support for volunteers, but a transparent and
fair process will be needed for this. Bruce agreed to talk to the
SIGCOMM 2010 chairs about a regional travel grant.
- Support for ToN
Could fund an increase in page limits, or cover page charges for authors with
demonstrated need. While it would also be nice to reduce review times,
it's not clear how to solve this using money. Henning agreed to work
on a concrete proposal for ToN, working with Keshav.
- Web site
We learned from ACM that it's possible to contract with professional
web developers. Not clear if this is what we need at this point.
- Educational workshop
As we continue to discuss what the SIG could do to help in the
education area, one option is to support participation in a workshop
on the topic.

4. Member benefits
We need to update our description of SIGCOMM member benefits so ACM
can begin 2011 budget planning. This discussion will be done by email.