Our Future Within AAPG
One of my goals this year is to instill a long-term view of our future within AAPG. Through our strategic plan, we have codified what we want to be, and that is to be indispensable to all professional geoscientists worldwide. That implies we want to maintain the highest standards of technical excellence and professional practice, and we want to grow our membership.
We know that our organization and the industry that employs most of our members are changing. In many ways, these changes will be the same for both groups. Approximately 50% of our members are over 50 years of age. In 25 years, the youngest of that group will be 75 years old. In the near term, our average age will continue to increase, but in the long term, we will get younger. On an aggregate basis, approximately 17% of our members are female (8% of active members and 30% of student members), while approximately 50% of the geoscientists entering the profession today are female. Mergers will continue to be the primary vehicles for growth within oil companies, and it is not unreasonable to expect mergers of professional societies in the future.
The question is “What does this mean to the AAPG House of Delegates?” By virtue of our governance system, the corporate memory of the association is short. Our long-term memory resides in the AAPG staff and in the HoD because of the long tenure of many of your members. In the same manner that you hold our past, you should also maintain the vision of our future. The Advisory Council is charged with the task of establishing and maintaining our strategic plan, but it is the HoD that has the ability to implement the policies and procedures through changes to the constitution and bylaws that will ultimately control our future.
AAPG will celebrate its 100th anniversary in Houston in 2017. I believe the decisions we make and the actions we take in this intervening period will have a significant impact on our ability to prosper during the second 100 years.