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Minutes of the Business Meeting, April 2013

Minutes of the GLOW Business Meeting held in Lund, on 4 April 2013 18.00-19.00

by Jeroen van Craenenbroeck

1. Opening

Sjef Barbiers (GLOW chairperson) welcomes everyone to the business meeting.

2. GLOW 2013 Lund

Halldór Sigurdsson (Congress president 2013) expresses his satisfaction about how GLOW 37 is going, as well as his gratitude for the local funding organisations.

There were 152 submissions for the main colloquium, and both the local organizers and the GLOW board were very pleased with the way the selection procedure was carried out (5 reviewers per abstract, additional reviews from the local organizers and the GLOW board for the top 61 abstracts). The process was very labor-intensive but delivered good results.

A substantial amount of the budget went to the reimbursement of the colloquium speakers, which makes GLOW a very expensive conference to organize (which in turn might mean that not every department or university will have the possibility of organizing GLOW). Moreover, the speaker reimbursements also created a great deal of additional administration because of the rather strict requirements and regulations of Lund University.

The local organizers of GLOW 2013 Lund were also wondering if the GLOW board shouldn’t provide more explicit and extensive instructions about how to set up the review process and how to organize the conference. At any rate, the guidelines about how to organize GLOW on the GLOW-website should be updated.

3. GLOW 2014 Brussels

Marijke De Belder (co-organizer of GLOW 2014; the Congress president for 2014 is Dany Jaspers) gives a short presentation about GLOW 2014 in Brussels. The main colloquium will take place from April 2 to April 4, 2014, There will be no theme and no invited speakers. All the talks will be live streamed and—if the authors give their permission—recorded. Local organizers include Dany Jaspers, Guido vanden Wyngaerd, Jeroen van Craenenbroeck, Marijke De Belder, Tanja Temmerman, and Koen Roelandt.

There will be two workshops on 5 April 2014:

  1. Phonological specification and interface interpretation organizers: Bert Botma (Leiden), Andrew Nevins (London), Marc van Oostendorp (Leiden) invited speakers: John Harris (London), Bert Vaux (Cambridge), Aditi Lahiri (Berkeley)
  2. Understanding possession organizers: Bert Le Bruyn (Utrecht), Eric Schoorlemmer (Leiden) invited speakers: Chris Barker (NYU), Kilu von Prince (ZAS)

In addition to the main colloquium and the workshops, Brussels is also organizing the first ever GLOW Spring School (GSS1). Marijke De Belder (coordinator of GSS1) gives a short presentation about the Spring School:

  • it takes place from 7 April till 11 April 2014
  • the theme of GSS1 is “Theories in dialogue”, the idea being that per topic two teachers are invited who will approach the topic from opposite viewpoints
  • the topics and teachers are as follows:
    • Modeling learnability: Charles Yang (UPenn) and Antal van den Bosch (Radboud University)
    • Islands: Norvin Richards (MIT) and Philip Hofmeister (Essex)
    • Pronouns: Martina Wiltschko (U British Columbia) and Philippe Schlenker (ENS, Paris & NYU)
    • Spell-Out: Hagit Borer (Queen Mary, London) and Pavel Caha (CASTL/Tromsø)

The members of meeting support the idea of a GLOW-branded spring school and agree that it is an interesting experiment. At the same time, though, they raise questions about the role of phonology, both in the GLOW conference and in the spring school. As for the latter, the chairperson points out that the board is aware of the delicate position phonology is in, and agrees that it would be a good idea for future spring schools to also offer phonology courses. As for the colloquium, the suggestion is made to co-opt one or more phonologists among the local organizers in an attempt to be able to attract more phonology submissions.

4. Future GLOWs

  • 2015: Paris 8 & ENS (concurrent with OCP)
  • 2016: Seville
  • 2017: three candidates: Budapest, London, Amsterdam/Utrecht

There are no candidates yet for post-2017, but if all three candidates for 2017 end up actually organizing GLOW (in consecutive years), this would fill the schedule till 2019. Suggestions for possible venues remain welcome, however.

5. Conference proposal Den Dikken/Lohndal

The issue:
Marcel Den Dikken and Terje Lohndal have expressed their plans to organize a round-table conference (provisional title: “Generative syntax in the 21th century: the road ahead”). “This round-table conference presents a ‘reconstitutional’ meeting of major minds in generative syntax aimed at producing a white paper that (re)affirms the doctrinal core, works towards creating an analytical lingua franca, and lays down a platform for research in the field in the coming years. (..)The round-table meeting (..) will be a three-day event, chaired by the organisers and open to the public. It will feature a select group of invitees who have been and continue to be central in the field: (..) with likely participants including Artemis Alexiadou, Jonathan Bobaljik, Robert Frank, Liliane Haegeman, Caroline Heycock, Howard Lasnik, Joan Maling, James McCloskey, Jason Merchant, Henk van Riemsdijk, Luigi Rizzi, Ian Roberts, Mamoru Saito, and Peter Svenonius.” For this conference, MDD&TJ request funding from GLOW. The total costs of the round-table conference are estimated at EUR 12,000.

the discussion:
The chairperson introduces the MDD&TL-proposal and summarizes the discussion of this proposal in the GLOW board. While the board is sympathetic to the general philosophy and high-level concerns of the proposal, it raises questions concerning feasibility, best approach, location, communication, audience, possible role of phonology/semantics, etc. It proposes that the chairperson report back to MDD&TL, making clear that while the board is in principle in favor of the proposal, it wants to discuss further to see to what extent the original plan can be modified before it can confirm its financial support. The chairperson asks permission from the business meeting to proceed as suggested by the board.

The proposal leads to extensive discussion in the business meeting, with different members taking—sometimes very—different positions. There is a fairly general consensus that generative grammar is currently under attack, both from neighboring fields and from within different linguistic frameworks. There is much less agreement, however, on how to respond to this criticism, with positions ranging from continuing to do high-quality research and not directly engaging the opposing views to the organization of a specific conference or meeting—in the spirit of the MDD&TL-proposal—designed to directly confront the criticism. Just like the board, several members of the business meeting express concerns and questions about the tone of such a meeting (defensive vs. starting from one’s own strengths), about its visibility, and also, about whether or not GLOW should want to assign its label such an event.

the decision:
The business meeting agrees that generative grammar faces a number of challenges today and that this is an issue GLOW might want to take some responsibility in. With this as background and taking into account the various opinions raised during the business meeting, the chairperson will further discuss the MDD&TL-proposal with Marcel and Terje and on the basis of this discussion will decide whether GLOW will want to invest money in the MDD&TL-conference.

6. GLOW Asia

The chairperson sketches the dire situation GLOW Asia is in as well as the extented efforts Pritty Patel has invested to revive GLOW Asia in a more formal and organized way than before. This includes a website, a GLOW board, memberships, regular conferences, newsletter etc. Moreover, she would like for GLOW Europe and GLOW Asia to work more closely in tandem and is asking for support and advice in setting up the relevant structures in Asia. As the GLOW board is very much in favor of these plans, it proposes to co-opt Pritty Patel as GLOW Asia Liaison Office. The general assembly agrees.

As GLOW Asia liason officer, Pritty will report regularly to the GLOW board about her progress. She’s hoping to get the key people in place and the website up and running by the end of 2013 and to organize a one-off workshop intended to bring East Asian and South Asian linguist(ic)s closer together in 2014.

The GLOW board is delighted by these developments and strongly supports Pritty’s efforts.

7. Changes to the GLOW board

The congress president for 2014 is Dany Jaspers. The chairperson, secretary and the treasurer are up for reelection and there are no other candidates. Member B (Lida Veselovska) has served for two terms and hence will step down. There is one candidate for this position, i.e. Mojmír Dočekal. Member C (Viola Schmitt) has served for two terms and hence will step down. There is one candidate for this position, i.e. Sarah Zobel. The new website manager is Alexis Dimitriadis.

The chairperson thanks Lida Veselovska and Pavel Iosad for their excellent service to the board.

The board proposes to co-opt Tobias Scheer as phonology member for another term and Pritty Patel as GLOW Asia liaison officer.

The general assembly agrees with the proposed changes. The current composition of the GLOW Board is as follows:

Congress President Dany Jaspers 2013-2014
Chairperson Sjef Barbiers 2013-2015
Secretary Jeroen van Craenenbroeck 2013-2015
Treasurer Maaike Schoorlemmer 2013-2015
Newsletter Editor Marc Richards 2012-2014
Journal Editor Harry van der Hulst
Website Manager Alexis Dimitriadis 2013-2015
Member A Roberta D’Alessandro 2012-2014
Member B Mojmír Dočekal 2013-2015
Member C Sarah Zobel 2013-2015
Member D Maria Rosa Lloret 2012-2014
Advisory Member 1 Henk van Riemsdijk
Advisory Member 2 Martin Everaert
Co-opted member (Phonology) Tobias Scheer 2013-2015
Co-opted member (GLOW Asia) Pritty Patel 2013-2015

8. Treasurer’s report

The chairperson discusses the 2012 treasurer’s report. For 2013, GLOW has EUR 22,585.25 which it can freely spend. Last year’s expenses were higher than the revenues. On the other hand, the reservations for long term memberships could be lowered given that there are not any publications costs anymore for the GLOW Newsletter

The board wants to use the considerable amount of money that is available to fund or support a number of schools, as it believes that training is one of the key areas where GLOW can make a difference.

The treasurer’s report will be sent to Marjo van Koppen for approval.

9. Requests for financial support

GLOW has received three funding requests from summer schools: from EGG, LISSIM and ALS. The GLOW board proposes to support these schools with €1000 each for this year.

The general assembly discusses the amounts given the various summer schools. Some members feel GLOW funding should be higher. The chairperson makes clear that the funding happens on an ad hoc basis, that structural support from GLOW to these schools is not possible and that the priority of the board lies with the GLOW Spring School.

The general assembly also discusses the issue of GLOW memberships and makes a couple of suggestions on how membership numbers could be increased.

After this discussion, the general assembly supports the GLOW board’s funding decisions, though not unanimously.

10. TLR

The TLR GLOW special issue based on GLOW Wroclaw 2010 has appeared in 2012. There will be no special issues from Vienna and Potsdam. The organizers of GLOW Lund are encouraged to start the selection process of papers to be submitted to the TLR special issue right after GLOW. Since it turns out to be difficult for GLOW organizers to do this selection process on their own, the GLOW board will also be involved. Only the six best papers can be selected for TLR.

11. Further issues