The IEEE is the world’s largest professional organization. Technical activities of the IEEE, including conferences and the publication of archival journals, are organized within 39 professional societies covering a wide range of electrotechnology subdisciplines from solid state circuits and electron devices to computers, communications, and information theory. One of these societies is the fifty year old Control Systems Society, whose founding in 1954 coincided with the launch of the American space program. A complete list of IEEE societies may be found on the organization’s website.
John Baillieul has been elected 40th President of the IEEE Control Systems Society. He follows a long line of distinguished control engineers, who have helped sustain and grow the Society into the leading organization in the field. (See attachments for the history of the Control Systems Society and a collection of anecdotes on past Society Presidents.) At this writing, the Society has slightly less than 10,000 members around the world. The Society publishes three journals: the Control Systems Magazine, the Transactions on Automatic Control, and the Transactions on Control Systems Technology. The Transactions on Automatic Control is widely regarded as the leading journal in the field. The Control Systems Society also has primary responsibility for running three of the leading annual conferences in the field, the American Control Conference, the Conference on Control Applications, and flagship IEEE Conference on Decision and Control. In addition to these, the Society co-sponsors or participates in a wide variety of smaller conferences and workshops dealing with topics of interest to the control engineering community.
Presidential duties and responsibilities include attending the major Society conferences, chairing the Society’s Executive Committee, Chairing the two annual meetings of the Society’s Board of Governors, writing a President’s Column for the Control Systems Magazine, and representing the interests of the Society within the IEEE. The last of these duties includes attendance at three annual meetings of the IEEE Technical Activities Board. Major challenges in the coming year will include decisions about electronic publishing, including the IEEE’s response to the “Open Access” movement, as well as making thoughtful decisions regarding the rapidly changing role of professional organizations in the age of universal internet connectivity.