Secretary's Report (1998)

Econometrica, Vol. 67, No. 1 (January, 1999)



AUGUST 29, 1998


1. Status of Membership and Circulation

THE FIRST SECTION of this report describes the evolution of the Society’s member ship and of the number of institutional subscribers. Information is provided on members and subscribers on both a mid-year and end-of-year basis. In each case, circulation is ‘‘real,’’ tied to actual banked receipts of dues and subscription revenue.

The latest information available, as of June 30 of the current year and previous years, is provided in the top half of Table I. The bottom half of Table I report s the final number of paid-up member s and subscribers as of the end of 1997 and previous years. For any given year prior to 1998, the figures in the bottom half of Table I are larger than in the top half, reflecting those member ships and subscriptions for a given year that are initiated between the middle of that calendar year and the middle of the following calendar year.

Averaging out year-to-year fluctuations, the circulation of Econometrica has remained quite stable in the 1990s. The full-year figures in the bottom half of Table I show that the average total circulation of Econometrica in 1995-97 was just 1.0 percent lower than the average for 1990-94. There was some change within the different categories of circulation. Again comparing 1995-97 with 1990-94, institutional circulation was 2 percent lower, regular member ship was 7.6 percent lower (but still 22 percent higher than the period 1985-89), and student member ship 40 percent higher.

The figures for June 30, 1998, shown in the last line of the top part of Table I, show a substantial recovery from the situat ion on the same date the previous year. This appear s to be a simple matter of timing. As explained in my report last year, Basil Blackwell had a major transition between software systems that delayed the posting of new member ships and member ship renewals in the Spring of 1997. Compar ing mid-year 1998 with mid-year 1996, institutional subscriptions are down slightly, regular member ships are up, and student member ships have declined precipitously, and this drop in student member ships more than fully explains the decline in total circulation from mid-1996 to mid-1998.

The comparat ive full-year 1997 figures for the Econometr ic Society and the Amer ican Econom ic Association are displayed in Table II. (For the member ship category these figures include regular, student , free, and life member s for both the ES and AEA). The ‘‘E/A’’ ratio for member s in 1997 of 0.192 was slightly below the 1990-96 average, while the ratio for institutions of 0.480 was below the record 1996 ratio but nevertheless well ahead of the 1990-96 average.

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