2005 SIGCHI Budget
Rob Jacob, the SIGCHI Treasurer, discusses the proposed lean and mean budget for 2005. The SIGCHI Executive Committee completed its budget for the ACM 2005 fiscal year (which begins on July 1, 2004) and you can see it in this article.
Times are still tight for us financially, ever since the technology recession and downturn in conference attendance. We are trying to keep our most important programs in place but not planning major new expenses or initiatives until our finances turn around.
As you can see from the budget listing, our annual SIGCHI budget (excluding conferences) is approximately $360K. The biggest income item is dues, and the biggest expense is interactions magazine, which we send to each member. This part of budget has been fairly stable and in balance.
But we also sponsor about $2M of conferences each year (most of that amount is the CHI conference). That part of the budget is inherently unstable, because we have to commit many conference expenses several years before we know what the corresponding income will be. While conference attendance was growing, this meant that we had a string of unbudgeted surpluses from our conferences. Now, while it is declining, we have had a series of unbudgeted losses. Conferences are now beginning to break even, caused both by the economy improving and by our cutting back sharply on conference expenses. Next year's budget shows a small surplus from conferences (the ACM conference fiscal year is such that CHI 2004 appears in our FY 05 budget, so this surplus is based on CHI 2004, for which most of the data are known).
Because of the ups and downs in conferences, ACM requires us to maintain a reserve fund balance to insure against these. During the good years, we built that balance up to over $2M. That large balance served its purpose during the last few years of conference losses, which could otherwise have bankrupted us. The balance is low now, below ACM's required amount, so we no longer have this cushion, and we must operate more frugally for now. We will be applying any surpluses from conferences toward building our fund balance back up, so it can continue to provide insurance against future conference downturns. In short, we have weathered a severe downturn and emerged fully solvent, but times will be tight for the near future.
SIGCHI FY 2005 BUDGET
|Total conference surplus/deficit||38,016|
|Non member subscriptions||3,200|
|SIG non member subscriptions||17,935|
|Other subscription income||4,484|
|ACM and SIG Board allocations||75,841|
|Chair / EC||67,940|
|VC Conferences / CMC||27,000|
|VC Publications / Pubs Board||51,908|
|VC Local SIGS||22,500|
|Fund balance start FY 05||304,363|
|Projected fund balance end FY 05||289,411|
|Fund balance required by ACM||512,149|