For 20 years, the Yale School of Forestry and Environmental Studies has served as the host and secretariat of the International Society for Industrial Ecology, thanks to the effort of the ISIE founding president, Professor Thomas Graedel. This arrangement ensured a good start and has served the organization well for an initial period, but eventually constrained further development. It has been part of the agenda of my presidency to set up the ISIE as an independent organization. We investigated various options and eventually decided to incorporate in the Netherlands. Thanks to the initative by Ester van der Voet, who served as treasurer, and Paul Hoekman as executive director, who organized the incorporation with a (somewhat unresponsive) notary in Leiden. I am happy to report that in December 2018, the incorporation was approved and we were able to set up an account. The secretarial tasks had already moved from Judy at Yale to Lizelle, who works for us through Upwork. With that, the new ISIE secretariate is operational!
The incorporation resulted in by-laws that align with the legal requirements in the Netherlands. The most important change is that there is a mandatory Annual General Meeting (AGM) of the membership which has significant decision making power. The Council is replaced by a Board, with much the same set-up as before. We have also moved the timing of the financial year and the terms of the council by half a year; the financial year will now be the calendar year while the hand-over of officers will occur at the AGM, i.e. at the biannual conference of the society.
With that, I am happy to hand over the presidency to Heinz Schandl. I would like to thank the outgoing Council for their support. I would also like to thank those individuals who have contributed to activities of the society, as committee or section board members, hosts of conferences, meetings, and workshops, webinar presenters. I hope you all will continue to support the society. I look forward to seeing you in Beijing or one of the regional meetings.