President’s Message

No Fear of Heights…
The outline of this message was written at a height of 39,000 feet, enroute from Seoul, Korea to Tel-Aviv, Israel, on my return from yet another outreach visit on behalf of the EMC Society - this time to the Korean EMC community and particularly, the Korean IEEE EMC Chapter. With so much traveling, the time in the air (12 hours, approximately) is so valuable that I must make the best of it. Sleeping time? A minor necessity, which, as far as I am concerned, its duration should be reduced to the utmost minimum achievable…
More about the visit to Korea will follow.

“Shape of Things to Come”
“Much Work Remains to Be Done Before We Can Announce Our Total Failure to Make Any Progress”
     For many years the EMC Society has been successfully engaged in long range planning (LRP). Many activities and plans have been formulated through this process; many initiatives and programs we have all become accustomed to have been devised through that process. However, the LRP process is somewhat lacking: It addresses topics bottom-up rather than top-down. The latter is the process of Strategic Planning in contrast to Long Range planning.
     Indeed, the field of interest (FOI) of the EMC Society is well defined and you may find it in the home page of the EMC Society:

The Field of Interest of the EMC Society involves engineering related to the electromagnetic environmental effects of systems to be compatible with itself and their intended operating environment.
This includes: standards, measurement techniques and test procedures, instrumentation, equipment and systems characteristics, interference control techniques and components, ­education, computational analysis, and spectrum management, along with scientific, technical, industrial, professional or other activities that contribute to this field.

     But – let us look at the bigger picture. If we want to be viable in the future, the FOI is simply insufficient! The British pop group “Slade” (in the 1980s) said: “Know who you are and know where you’re going to…” Where are we going? What is the purpose of the EMC Society of the IEEE in the first place? What is our mission, our vision, our goals and objectives? Or, in short, what is the “core ideology” of the EMC Society?
     Core ideology: A consistent identity of the EMC Society that transcends all changes related to its relevant environment. Core ideology consists of two notions:

  • Core purpose – the EMC Society’s reason for being
  • Core values – essential and enduring principles that guide the EMC Society

     Try taking a minute to list just a few items – this is a challenge, isn’t it?
     Since early 2009, the EMC Society has been engaged in a strategic planning process, the highlight of which was the approval in the March 2009 Board of Directors meeting of the EMC Society’s core ideology, namely its Mission and Vision (or big audacious goal) statements as shown below:
     EMC Society Core Purpose (Mission): To foster the development and facilitate the exchange of scientific and technological knowledge in the discipline of electromagnetic environmental effects and electromagnetic compatibility, as detailed in the EMC Society’s field of interest (FOI), and promote literary, educational and professional aspects thereof, that benefit members, the profession and humanity.
     EMC Society Big Audacious Goal (Vision): To be the recognized and respected global organization and leading provider of scientific and engineering information and services in the field of electromagnetic environmental effects and electromagnetic compatibility engineering, technology, and innovation for the betterment of society and the preferred professional development source for our members.
     On this foundation, the EMC Society has now initiated its detailed strategic planning exciting process, holding four meetings a year, with the objective of completing and approving a Strategic Planning document by the end of 2009. This document will set the stage for EMC Society activities in the years 2010 through 2015. Stay tuned for more in the future.

Evolution, not Revolution
“There is nothing wrong with change if it is in the right direction” (W. Churchill)
     I used this same title in my previous message, but am now repeating it in a different context. Several significant items which emerged from the LRP process were approved at the March 2009 Board of Directors meeting for the benefit of Chapters and members of the EMC Society. Here are just a couple:

  • In the technical services, a major change in the work pattern of the Technical Activities Committee (TAC) will take place. TAC will now hold two face-to-face meetings, rather than just one at the annual symposium. This additional ­meeting was required in order to meet the increased challenges and additional tasks and responsibilities allocated to TAC and the TCs, and for maintaining the highest quality of our technical services and products.
  • In the education activities, a brand new initiative will be launched for the very first time at the 2009 Symposium in Austin: A Leadership Track. In this track, attendees will be able to learn basic skills in leadership, preparing them for fulfilling IEEE leadership roles, in their local Chapters, sections, and the society levels. But, information to be provided in this track will be useful for each and every one of you in your everyday work. After all, each of us is a leader in some way or another and can benefit from career development. Attend this track. It is included in your full registration and is open to all attendees.
  • In the member and Chapter activities, an extension of the Distinguished Lecturer (DL) Program, the Respected Speakers Bureau (RSB) was approved by the Board of Directors. This program is intended to provide additional resources for local Chapter chairs for Chapter meetings. Check the EMC Society web site in the near future for more information and a list of “Respected Speakers.”
    By the way, “respected speakers” need not be DLs, past or present. If you know of an outstanding speaker who could be included in the RSB, please let us know.

By the way, have you visited the EMC Society web site recently? Have you noticed the change? Thanks to the ­relentless efforts of Todd Hubing, our new VP for Communication Services, and the web master, Shannon Archambeault, a major “face lift” is gradually taking place. Keep on visiting our web site and observe the change as it reveals itself.

Global Outreach Activities Continue in 2009
“Globalization, as defined by rich people like us, is a very nice thing... you are talking about the Internet, you are talking about cell phones, and you are talking about computers. This doesn’t affect two-thirds of the people of the world.” (Jimmy Carter, the 39th US President (1977–81) and recipient of the Nobel Peace Prize in 2002).
     Rich or not rich, technology cannot replace face-to-face meeting and interaction. Indeed, my daughter, Tami Lee, believes it when she says she “talks” with her friends on ICQ, Facebook, etc. I may be old fashioned, but in my humble opinion, personal ties are made through handshakes, smiling and laughing together, mutual visits and discussions. Institutional ties are no different. To increase its effectiveness, its visibility, and its relevance, global outreach was and is at the top of my agenda.
     In the preface to this message, I mentioned a visit to Korea. Indeed, during a very busy and enjoyable visit held April 13 to 15, I had the privilege of holding this outreach visit with Professor Takeo Yoshino, Member of the Board of Directors and the Region 10 Membership and Chapter Coordinator, hosted by Professor Joungho Kim from KAIST (Korea Advanced Institute of Science and Technology). During the visit, we had the opportunity to meet professionals from academia and industry, present talks and meet informally with students.
     One of the most exciting visits was to Samsung CTO in ­Suwon City. During that visit, hosted by high-level executives from Samsung, we were presented with the top-notch innovative products of Samsung, and of course, presented talks to Samsung engineers.
     Samsung is a great supporter of EMC and Signal Integrity R&D in Korea, contributing to ongoing research in academia as well as to the organization of conferences and workshops on those topics. It is hoped that similar partnerships will develop between industry and academia worldwide.
     During the meetings, discussions were held on possible cooperation between the EMC Society, academia and industry, agreeing that synergy between all is crucial for their viability. No innovative products will occur without academic R&D, but what use will there be to academic discoveries if industry does not put them into practical use? It is anticipated that further discussions will be held to further foster this tri-directional ­relationship: Academia-Industry-EMC Society.

Incidentally, Professor Takeo Yoshino
is celebrating his 80th (!!!) birthday this month.
Congratulations, Takeo, and many, many happy returns

Detailed information on our visit to Korea will be provided in the Summer 2009 issue of the Newsletter.
More outreach visitations are scheduled for 2009 all around the globe. Those will be reported in the next issues of the Newsletter.


Breaking News:

Congratulations to the German IEEE EMC Chapter
Congratulations to the German IEEE EMC Chapter! The Chapter was awarded the “Region 8 2008 Chapter of the Year”. This is a great achievement, considering that in Region 8 there is a total of more than 400 Chapters! Note that this is an IEEE regional and not an EMC Society award!
     The EMC Society is honored by this achievement of its Chapter and many thanks and kudus are due to Dr. Frank Sabath, German IEEE EMC Chapter Chair, for his leadership as well as to all preceding Chapter chairs, especially Professor Heyno Garbe, who have led the German EMC Chapter to this achievement.
     Incidentally, Frank is a very dedicated and active member of the Society. He selflessly contributes to the EMC Society in multiple roles, such as: EMC Society Region 8 Membership and Chapter Coordinator, Global Symposia Coordinator, TC-7 (Non-Sinusoidal Waveforms) Committee Chair, and more. We have agreed that Frank no doubt has earned the title “Super Frank!”

A Brief Reminder of the IEEE’s 125 Anniversary Celebration
By the time you read these lines, the celebration of the IEEE’s 125th ­anniversary will be under way (or over).
     Just in case you see this issue before, please be reminded that on the evening of May 21, 2009, the EMC Society will be ­commemorating the 125th anniversary of the IEEE at the Franklin Institute in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, along with the Board of Directors meeting taking place that week. The meeting is co-hosted by the IEEE Philadelphia Section and EMC Chapter and sponsored by the EMC Society Board of Directors.
     If you see this message before the event, please note you are welcome to join in the celebration. Announcements have been sent out to all IEEE EMC Chapters, but please RSVP to Graham Kilshaw at

Run, Vote, Exercise Your Voting Rights and Make a Difference
The call for nominations for candidates for serving a three year term (2010–2012) on the EMC Society Board of Directors was recently issued to all EMC Society members. The slate of candidates for the previous election (held in 2008) was the largest ever, with 13 excellent and worthy candidates from almost all regions of the world. Regretfully, only six candidates can be elected.
     Have you considered “running” for the Board of Directors? This is YOUR opportunity to make a significant difference. Simply fill in the nomination form sent out to all EMC Society members and have 15 members sign it. It is as easy as 1–2–3.
     There is another and even greater concern related to the elections to the Board of Directors. In recent years, the number of voting members has significantly declined. Only 10% to 15% of the eligible EMC Society members actually take advantage of their right to vote. I wish to believe that all EMC Society members DO CARE, and thus, the low voting rate is no less than shocking!
     Consider this: More than 40% of all EMC Society members reside in Regions 8 and 10 combined. And how many members of the Board of Directors have actually come from both those regions? Two! Only two out of 18 members of the BoD!!! Just over 10%! There is only one explanation to this unbelievable finding: EMC Society members do not exercise their right to vote and make a difference.
     I plea to all members of the EMC Society: Consider running for the Board of Directors and submit your candidacy. Do it the sooner the better. But even if you do not, next time, when you receive the ballot form, please cast your vote. Fill in and submit the ballot form. You may vote for up to six candidates – surely you want to make a difference!

L’Aquila, Italy Earthquake
I am sure you have all heard of the great natural disaster – the gigantic earthquake which leveled the historical town of L’Aquila, Italy. Many of you may not know, however, that the town of L’Aquila hosts the University of L’Aquila which is home to one of the most important EMC academic centers in Italy.

A group photo was taken with the students from KAIST after a traditional Korean lunch. Professor Joungho Kim, Professor Takeo Yoshino and EMC Society President, Elya B. Joffe, are shown from left in the center front row.

     We have been in immediate contact with Professor Antonio Orlandi, whom most of us know very well, and he reported that the EMC laboratory, and in fact, the entire university, were devastated, and the damage cannot even be estimated at the time of writing.
     Thankfully, to the best of our knowledge, no physical harm has occurred to any of our friends from L’Aquila. I wish to send our condolences through the Italian members of the EMC Society to the people of Italy, and particularly to those residing in L’Aquila, for the many lives lost, and for those shattered by this immense force of nature. May the Lord provide comfort to the families of the deceased and a speedy recovery to the wounded.

     Consequent to this disaster, the EMC Society is engaged in an effort to consider the manner it may assist its members in their time of difficulty. Keeping in mind that while resources are few and limited, and needs may be high, the EMC Society is looking into alternative ways it may address such grave situations. Any ideas, proposals and suggestions will be thankfully received.


Dr. Sung Il, Chief Engineer of CAE of EMC Samsung, Professor Takeo Yoshino, EMC Society Board member, Elya B. Joffe, EMC Society President, and Professor Joungho Kim of KAIST are shown from left following their visit to Samsung, Korea.

Be Prepared…the 2009 IEEE
International Symposium
on EMC in Austin, Texas is Under way

I would like to take this opportunity to invite you all to join us at the 2009 IEEE International Symposium on EMC in Austin, TX, August 17–21, 2009.
     In light of the economical situation, budgetary cutbacks are expected and observed, but, I encourage you not to sacrifice your professional future due to temporary financial setbacks. After all, continuity of our professional education and advancement is crucial to our career. The Symposium is essentially where we learn our trade, keep up to date with new inventions and innovations, and most of all – meet our colleagues and peers.
     Austin is also known as “Music City” and believe it or not – a “Call for Musicians” (in addition to the call for papers) has been issued. Join us and combine radio and audio frequencies to enjoy a spurious-free spectrum of professional and social experiences. I look forward to meeting you all in Austin.

Future Board of Directors Meetings
As usual, I will conclude this message with information on our upcoming Board of Directors meetings, just in case you have the time, inclination and opportunity to attend. Please remember that all meetings of the EMC Society Board of Directors are open. Any members who want to attend are most welcome. This could be your opportunity to take a look at the manner in which our Society is run, and even have a chance to express your own opinion on issues in debate. You may even find it interesting enough to make you want to run for the Board at its next election!
     The schedule of Board of Directors meetings is posted on the calendar page of our web site as well as in the calendar section of this Newsletter. If you can’t attend a Board of Directors meeting to tell us your thoughts in person, note that the contact information of all members of the Board of Directors and the major committee chairs is listed on the Society web page.
     I, as your President, am at your service and look forward to hearing from you. Please do not hesitate to e-mail me at: eb.joffe@ieee.     EMC


If you would like to contact the IEEE Webmaster
© Copyright 2009, IEEE. Terms & Conditions. Privacy & Security

return to contents
IEEE logo