ISCA By-laws (July 2023 - )

ISCA By-laws (July 2023 - )


1.1 According to the statutes of the Association (article 9), the Board is permitted to draft any "by-laws" deemed necessary to the efficient running of the Association. The by-laws are intended to act as a supplement to the statutes and as a collective "memory" for the Association; the by-laws provide a repository of Board decisions and other practical guidance. By-laws are approved by the Board and may be changed at any Board meeting.

1.2 Under exceptional circumstances, where the ISCA Board and Members are unable to meet and communicate in the standard way the ISCA Board may temporarily amend the procedures necessary to carry out the efficient running of the Association. This may involve, but is not limited to, replacing in-person with remote attendance at meetings and changes to closing dates commensurate with the requirements of the circumstances. A two-thirds majority of the Board is required to approve such changes.


2.1 ISCA is registered as a French association in Grenoble. Any changes to the statutes have to be translated into French, registered and approved in France. Changes in the membership of the Board also have to be registered in France.

2.2 For proposed changes to the statutes at a General Assembly, if a called vote appears to be close via show of hands, a secret paper ballot will be held.


3.1 According to the statutes, the Association may support several classes of membership: personal, institutional, honorary, associated and student. Only personal, institutional, and student membership categories are supported at the present time.

3.2 Student membership is conditional on the availability of written confirmation of an individual's student status from an approved educational establishment.

3.3 Student membership is available for both under-graduate and post-graduate students.

3.4 All registrants for an ISCA event have to be members of the Association. Each non-member registrant automatically becomes a member of the Association for a period governed by the membership scheme. This supercedes the requirement that the Board should approve each membership application individually.

3.5 A member will be deemed to have resigned if the membership fee is not paid within three months of a second reminder.

3.6 The membership directory will be made available as a publication of the Association on payment of an appropriate fee.

3.7 ISCA membership by institution is made in increments of 5 members per institution, with a comparable scaling of the membership fee.


4.1 The Board will have no more than 15 members. The Board shall have an odd number of members.

4.2 The Board will meet at least twice a year for a full day.

4.3 If a Board member resigns, an election will normally be held for a replacement within three months of the resignation. The Board may also decide not to fill the vacant post until the next regular election.

4.5 The Secretariat will maintain a list of past and present Board members, together with their dates of office.

4.6 Depending on the requirement to fill vacant posts on the Board, elections may take place in April or May every two years. The membership will be invited to nominate candidates at least two months before the election date. The Board may also nominate candidates. The voting will be conducted as an online ballot. At least 10 days will be allowed for votes to be registered. In the event of a tie, the candidate elected will be chosen by coin-toss. The Secretariat will administer all aspects of the process.

4.7 Nominations to the Board are to be made in writing with the support of three members of the association, and with agreement from the candidate in either written or electronic form.

4.8 If the number of candidates is not larger than the number of vacancies, no ballot is required and the nominated candidates are deemed to have been elected.

4.9 If a Board position remains vacant due to the lack of candidates at an election, a member may be co-opted by the Board. Alternatively, the duties associated with the vacant position may be taken on by an existing Board member.

4.10 A newly constituted Board should elect its President before the next General Assembly of the Association. The final official act of an outgoing President is to oversee this election. The new President must be approved by an absolute majority of the Board members. If no candidate reaches absolute majority, the two candidates with the most votes are the candidates of a new ballot. In case of a tie, the Board can decide on an intermediate process of weighted voting to break the tie. The outcome of the intermediate process must be approved by an absolute majority of the Board members.

4.11 The results of the elections are publicly announced in ISCA's electronic newsletter, and at the next General Assembly of the Association

4.12 Responsibility is transferred to a new Board (and the new President) at the close of the next General Assembly.

4.13 In order to ensure some continuity in the running of the Association, the immediate Past-President is invited to participate in Board meetings as adviser for one further year. The Board may invite up to two additional persons to participate in Board meetings as advisers. The invited advisers have no voting rights on the Board, and they are not subject to the restrictions of Statute 4.1.

4.14 Duties will be assigned to each Board member by the President (after due consultation with the member) within three months of a new Board being established. 

4.15 The Association may provide travel grants for Board members to attend Board meetings. In order to reduce costs, it is desirable for Board meetings to take place in combination with other organized events, in particular the yearly INTERSPEECH Conference, for which Board members are expected to obtain their own funding to attend. In the event that a Board member is unable to obtain funding to attend the Board meeting (e.g. due to retirement from their institution/organisation), the Board member may request funding support from the Association. In order to place a maximum limit on potential travel awards for the Board, up to 2 requests only may be allowed annually.

4.16 Financial support to attend INTERSPEECH: Upon request, ISCA will pay for reasonable travel/accommodation for ex-officio Board members who are unable to obtain funding to attend INTERSPEECH (in the event that INTERSPEECH organizers do not cover such costs).

4.17 ISCA will annually budget the equivalent of up to 4 student travel grants for supporting Board members' travel costs to attend board meetings, which would also include ex-officio Board members' travel to attend INTERSPEECH.  Approval of support is the responsibility of the ISCA Vice President and requires consensus from an Ad Hoc review committee of at least three (but not more than four) members consisting of (i) ISCA President, (ii) ISCA Vice-President, and at least one of the following Board members (iii) ISCA Grants and Awards Coordinator and/or (iv) Treasurer. Support for an individual will normally be limited to the amount of a student travel grant but can be extended within the limits of total budgeted travel support for that period if 4 individual awards are not awarded and evidence is provided to support an increase in award. The outcome of any travel requests will also be shared with the entire Board. Finally, any such awards will also be announced in the board's report to the assembly.


5.1. The function of the Advisory Council is to provide advice to the Board on a range of subjects including, but not limited to, the venue of future INTERSPEECH conferences.

5.2. Subject to the transitional arrangements in 5.4 to 5.8,
(a) the Advisory Council shall consist of approximately twenty-five senior speech communication researchers who are not members of the Board;
(b) members of the Advisory Council shall be elected by the Board, taking into consideration nominations by the current Advisory Council. There shall be no restriction on the re-election of members of the Advisory Council;
(c) members of the Advisory Council shall be elected for a four-year term beginning on 1 January of an odd-numbered year;
(d) in order to ensure continuity, approximately half of the members of the Advisory Council shall be elected in every even-numbered year in order to begin a four-year term on 1 January of the following year;
(e) upon the completion of an INTERSPEECH conference, the Chair of the Organizing Committee of that conference shall become a member of the Advisory Councilfor the remainder of the current IAC term plus the next ordinary four-year term.
(f) at the time a Past-President of ISCA is no longer a member of the Board and no longer takes part in the activities of the Board, the Past-President shall be invited to be a member of the Advisory Council for the remainder of the current IAC term plus the next ordinary four-year term.

5.3. The President shall chair the Advisory Council without voting rights.

5.4. The following transitional arrangements shall apply to the Advisory Council:
(a) all persons who were members of the Advisory Council on 1 January 2003 shall remain members of the Advisory Council until 31 December 2004;
(b) approximately half of these persons shall remain members of the Advisory Council until 31 December 2006. The selection of these members shall be made by the Board.

5.5. In case of the Permanent Council of ICSLP relinquishing responsibility for INTERSPEECH/ICSLP conferences, the following additional arrangements shall apply:
(a) all persons who were members of the Permanent Council of ICSLP on 1 January 2003 shall become members of the Advisory Council unless they are members of the Board; the term of membership on the Advisory Council of these persons shall end on 31 December of the year in which their term of membership of the Permanent Council of ICSLP would have ended;
(b) the founders of EUROSPEECH and ICSLP shall become members of the Advisory Council for life.

5.6. The Advisory Council shall elect one of its members as the Minute Secretary for each meeting.

5.7. Meetings of the Advisory Council shall be held at each INTERSPEECH conference.

5.8. Decisions of the Advisory Council shall be made by a simple majority vote of those attending a meeting. In between conferences decisions shall be made by mail or e-mail ballot. In case of mail or e-mail ballots, background information required by the members in order to make an informed decision on the subject of the vote shall be provided to them by the President

5.9. The Secretariat shall keep records of the Advisory Council membership, of the term of office for each Advisory Council member and of the minutes of Advisory Council meetings.

5.10. The members of the Advisory Council shall receive abridged minutes of each Board meeting.


6.1 All INTERSPEECH conferences shall be titled "INTERSPEECH - Annual Conference of the International Speech Communication Association".

6.2 INTERSPEECH Proceedings: each year the proceedings are to be made available free of charge to everyone online at the first day of conference

6.3  Bids for INTERSPEECH: the deadline each year for bids to host INTERSPEECH four years hence is November 1st (details are to be posted on the ISCA website well ahead); the Board selects the site.

6.4 Doctoral Consortium: each year at INTERSPEECH , ISCA will hold a student event called the Doctoral Consortium; the SAC (Student Activity Committee) will invite submissions from PhD students and select the best ones for presentation.

6.5 Papers at INTERSPEECH have a maximum of 5 pages each (the 5th page, if used, is uniquely for references only)

6.6 ISCA budgets a number of ISCA student travel grants to support students to attend INTERSPEECH conferences (funds used to pay for registration and travel expenses) annually

6.7 The exchange rate for ISCA membership and ISCA donation in Euros for INTERSPEECH is to be fixed at the rate on the first business day after paper acceptance notification is sent out.

6.8 Funds should not be deposited in ISCA accounts on behalf of conferences, workshops, or SIGs whereby ISCA functions as a bank. Surpluses may be given to ISCA with ISCA then being able to decide what best to do with the funds.

6.9 ISISCA has established an “INTERSPEECH Risk Fund,” for which guidelines are published on the ISCA Web. The ISCA Financial Committee will manage this fund. Use of this fund is optional to all ISCA conferences. The purpose of the fund is to manage financial risk across all ISCA events, with the objective to maintain low registration fees.

6.10 Technical Committee: ISCA establishes a Technical Committee, to maintain continuity across yearly INTERSPEECH meetings.  This committee will advise and consult the Organizing Committee for each ISCA meeting.  The committee will maintain a reviewer portal, to be used for each INTERSPEECH.  Members of this committee will include Technical Chairs from current, upcoming and past meetings.


7.1. The role of the INTERSPEECH Steering Committee (ISC) is to provide organizational support and guidance to INTERSPEECH organizing committees. In addition, the ISC shall maintain the ISCA Guidelines for INTERSPEECH conferences, and prepare the call for proposals to organize INTERSPEECH conferences.

7.2. The ISC will be chaired by the International Conference Coordinator.

7.3. The ISCA Treasurer shall be a member of the ISC.

7.4. The ISC shall have no more than eight members.

7.5. The other members of the ISC shall be the last 2 INTERSPEECH conference organizers, the current organizer and the next 3 future ones.

7.6. The ISC meets at every INTERSPEECH conference, in order to promote a fruitful exchange of experiences between conference organizers.

7.7. The ISC shall maintain the ISCA Guidelines for INTERSPEECH conferences, call for proposals to organize INTERSPEECH conferences, negotiate contracts between the Association and INTERSPEECH organizing committees, and provide organizational support and guidance for INTERSPEECH organizing committees. See separate guidelines for INTERSPEECH conferences


8.1. An INTERSPEECH Technical Program Committee (TPC) shall be formed for each INTERSPEECH conference in order to administer the review process and to establish the program.

8.2. The TPC will be chaired by the Technical Program Chair of the INTERSPEECH conference.

8.3. The TPC shall have no more than 25 members.

8.4. The ISCA Board member responsible for Scientific Diversity shall be a member of the TPC. Some ISCA board members should be included in the TPC, since they can help the organizer in many ways during the review and the conference itself, due to the experience they have from previous conferences.

8.5. The other members of the TPC shall be suggested by the INTERSPEECH Organizing Committee and approved by the ISCA Board. The TPC members should be chosen to achieve a proper balance between the various scientific and technical areas, taking into account the typical number of submissions in each area. The TPC members should be well-known experts, with a good track record as reviewer coordinators, so that their names contribute to the attraction of participants. In addition, some amount of balance with regard to geographical region and gender should be sought.


9.1 The Board approves the membership of the organizing committees for special events such as ISCA Tutorial and Research Workshops (ITRW), and for ongoing activities such as Special Interest Groups (SIG) and Regional Chapters (RC).

9.2 ISCA Technical Committee: a permanent committee composed mostly of Board members, to advise on the review process for INTERSPEECH.

9.3 ISCA Committees: members of the Board participate in the following committees: Special Interest Group, Publication and Archive, Training and Education, Technical, Communication, Grants and Awards, Fellow, ISCA Student Advisory, Workshop, Distinguished Lecturer, Industry, Finance, Ethics, Diversity and Outreach. These committees may also have non-Board members.


10.1 The function of a SIG is to encourage interest and activity in specific topic areas within the broad field of the Association. The function of an RC is to encourage interest and activity in the field of the Association within a specific region. The activities of SIGs and RCs may include workshops, special conference sessions, dedicated web pages and other schemes that might be proposed. A SIG can have a single scientific focus, but could also have a wider scope and relate to language or member status.

10.2 The establishment of a SIG or RC shall be approved by the Board.

10.3 Before it is approved, a candidate SIG or RC is given one year in which to organize itself and to meet the requirements of the by-laws.

10.4 Each SIG and RC shall have a statement of purpose and a constitution, approved by the Board, and shall be designated as an "ISCA Special Interest Group on ", or "ISCA Regional Chapter for".

10.5 A SIG or RC shall have a committee of at least two elected officers - Chairperson and Secretary - and elections shall be held for these positions every two years. These two officers must be members of ISCA. Re-election is possible but consecutive appointments are limited to four successive terms. The election procedure must be specified in the constitution.

10.6 Each SIG and RC shall appoint a Liaison Representative (who may be one of the officers) who shall be responsible for communication with members of the SIG or RC and with the Board.

10.7 Each SIG and RC committee shall provide a written annual report to the Board before 1st July each year.

10.8 A SIG's or RC's statement of purpose, current officer information, and annual report shall be published on the web pages of the Association.

10.9 Each SIG and RC may have access to the membership list of the Association, and SIG and RC announcements may be included in normal publicity of the Association.

10.10 A SIG or RC must have at least twenty-five members, and it shall maintain a list of its members and supply this to the Board along with its annual report. It is not obligatory for a member of a SIG or RC to be member of the Association. However, membership of the Association should be encouraged by the SIG or RC.

10.11 A SIG may hold workshops in conjunction with conferences of the Association (independent of other workshops it may hold).

10.12 A SIG or RC may decide whether an event organized by them is an ISCA event or not. Only in case of an ISCA event, ISCA membership rules shall apply. 10.13 The Association will not provide any automatic financial support for a SIG or RC. Each SIG and RC must cover its own running costs, and any significant proposed expenditure must be approved by the Board. A SIG or RC may apply to the Board for an annual budget - not to subsidize events, but as an advance on costs.

10.14 A SIG or RC is not required to solicit subscriptions from its members. Any proposal to support a SIG or RC via membership subscriptions must be explicitly approved by the Board.

10.15 Profits from any activity organized by a SIG or RC will be shared in equal parts by the organizers, the SIG or RC, and the Association.

10.16 A SIG or RC must obtain Board approval for any activities sponsored jointly with any organization(s) other than ISCA.

10.17 The Board may approve the establishment of a SIG or RC jointly with other organizations. In that case, at least two members of the SIG or RC committee should be member of the Association, one of whom should be the Liaison Representative. All by-law articles on an ISCA SIG or RC should apply to a joint SIG or RC, respectively. Participants in SIG or RC activities should be members of at least one of the organizations that established the SIG or RC.

10.18 The Board may choose to close a SIG or RC at any time on grounds such as failure to adhere to the required procedures, inactivity over a period of years, or divergence from the interests of the Association

10.19 “Summer Schools”: each year the Board will consider funding (amount of about 10 000 euros per school)


11.1 The Board may approve the establishment of cooperative relationships with other national and international organizations, and would seek to obtain special dispensations for the members of those organizations.



13.1 ISCA Medal for Scientific Achievement: each year the Board will select the ISCA Medalist from among candidates submitted in nominations by any member ISCA. Nominations are to be submitted to the This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. using the nominations form available from the ISCA Medal section on the website or from the ISCA Secretary; the deadline for each year is listed at the site as well. Unsuccessful candidates of the previous year(s) are invited to be re-nominated to qualify for candidacy.

13.2 ISCA Service Medal: each year the Board will decide whether to present an ISCA Service Medal to an ISCA member who has provided extraordinary service to ISCA and/or the Speech Communication community.  If so decided, nominations are solicited from the Board or the IAC, and the Board chooses the medalist.  Each candidacy must have supporting material.  A nomination form is available from the ISCA Secretary. 

13.3 ISCA board members are not eligible for any ISCA awards or honors, including ISCA Fellow, during their term in the Board.


IAC 2014

Composition of the ISCA Advisory Council (IAC)

In alphabetical order: [end of term]

as of 1 January 2015

Life Members:

  • Hiroya Fujisaki, The University of Tokyo, Japan
  • Joseph Mariani, LIMSI-CNRS, France


Terms ending in 2016 and/or beyond

  • Jerome Bellegarda [1/1/2013-31/12/2016]
  • Frederic Bimbot (IAC past chairman) [1/1/2014-31/12/2017]
  • Jean-Francois Bonastre (ISCA Past President) [1/1/2014-31/12/2019]
  • Piero Cosi - ISTC, Italy [31/12/2016]
  • Sadaoki Furui [1/1/2013-31/12/2016]
  • Julia Hirschberg [1/1/2013-31/12/2016]
  • Lin-shan Lee [1/1/2013-31/12/2012016]
  • Johanna Moore (EiC, Speech Communication, non-voting member) [1/1/2013-31/12/2016]
  • Roger K. Moore (Editor, Computer Speech and Language, non-voting member) [09/08/2016-31/12/2018]
  • Prem Natarajan [1/1/2013-31/12/2016]
  • Yoshinori Sagisaka [1/1/2013-31/12/2016]
  • Richard Sproat, Google Inc (INTERSPEECH 2012 General Chair) [1/1/2013 - 31/12/2016]
  • Isabel Trancoso-INESC-ID, Lisbon, Portugal (ISCA Past President) [1/1/2013 - 31/12/2018]
  • Dirk Van Compernolle [1/1/2013-31/12/2016]
  • Steve Young [1/1/2013-31/12/2016]


Terms ending in 2014

  • Anne Cutler-Max-Planck-Institute for Psycholinguistics, The Netherlands [1/1/2011 - 31/12/2014]
  • Björn Granström-KTH, Sweden [1/1/2011 - 31/12/2014]
  • B. Yegnanarayana-IIIT Hyderabad, India [1/1/2011 - 31/12/2014]
  • Chin Hui Lee-Georgia Institute of Technology, USA [1/1/2011 - 31/12/2014]
  • Chiu-yu Tseng-Academia Sinica, Taiwan, ROC [1/1/2011 - 31/12/2014]
  • Jacqueline Vaissiere- CNRS/Sorbonne-Nouvelle, France [1/1/2011 - 31/12/2014]
  • John H. L. Hansen-CRSS University of Texas at Dallas, USA [1/1/2011 - 31/12/2014]
  • Mari Ostendorf-University of Washington, USA [1/1/2011 - 31/12/2014]
  • Richard Stern-Carnegie Mellon University, USA [1/1/2011 - 31/12/2014]
  • Roger K. Moore, Sheffield University, UK [31/12/2014]
  • Steve Renals, University of Edinburgh, UK [1/1/2011 - 31/12/2014]


ISCA General Assembly - Aalborg, Denmark, September 2001

No formal minutes have been made from this General Assembly. The President and the Treasurer showed their reports in a Powerpoint presentation. The reports were approved by the General Assembly. No further decisions were made.

The Powerpoint show can be viewed in an HTML version. Please note that this show opens in a new window.

IAC January 2013

Composition of the ISCA Advisory Council (IAC)

In alphabetical order: [end of term]

as of 1 January 2013

  • Anne Cutler-Max-Planck-Institute for Psycholinguistics, The Netherlands [1/1/2011 - 31/12/2014]
  • Björn Granström-KTH, Sweden [1/1/2011 - 31/12/2014]
  • B. Yegnanarayana-IIIT Hyderabad, India [1/1/2011 - 31/12/2014]
  • Chin Hui Lee-Georgia Institute of Technology, USA [1/1/2011 - 31/12/2014]
  • Chiu-yu Tseng-Academia Sinica, Taiwan, ROC [1/1/2011 - 31/12/2014]
  • Denis Burnham-University of Western Sydney, Australia [31/12/2012]
  • Dirk Van Compernolle-K.U. Leuven, Belgium [31/12/2012]
  • Hiroya Fujisaki-Science University of Tokyo, Japan [Life Member]
  • Isabel Trancoso-INESC-ID, Lisbon, Portugal [ex officio]
  • Jacqueline Vaissiere- CNRS/Sorbonne-Nouvelle, France [1/1/2011 - 31/12/2014]
  • John H. L. Hansen-CRSS University of Texas at Dallas, USA [1/1/2011 - 31/12/2014]
  • Joseph Mariani-LIMSI-CNRS, France [Life Member]
  • Julia Hirschberg-Columbia University, USA [31/12/2012]
  • Keiichi Tokuda- Nagoya Institute of Technology, Japan [31/12/2012]
  • Marc Swerts -SPECOM EiC [1/1/2011 - 31/12/2014]
  • Mari Ostendorf-University of Washington, USA [1/1/2011 - 31/12/2014]
  • Nelson Morgan- ICSI, USA [31/12/2012]
  • Piero Cosi - ISTC, Italy [31/12/2016]
  • Plinio Barbosa- University of Campinas, Brazil [31/12/2012]
  • Roberto Pieraccini- Speechcycle, USA [31/12/2012]
  • Richard Stern-Carnegie Mellon University, USA [1/1/2011 - 31/12/2014]
  • Roger K. Moore, Sheffield University, UK [31/12/2014]
  • Steve Renals, University of Edinburgh, UK [1/1/2011 - 31/12/2014]
  • Sadaoki Furui-Tokyo Institute of Technology, Japan[31/12/2012]
  • Shri Narayanan-Univ. Southern California, USA [31/12/2012]

Minutes of ESCA General Assembly - Budapest, 1999

1. Opening Remarks - Minutes of the Previous General Assembly

The president of ESCA, Roger Moore (UK), opens the meeting and welcomes the about 100 members present at this General Assembly. He displays the legal basis of the General Assembly (GA) to be held every two years according to the ESCA statutes. He then explains the agenda. There are no wishes for modifying the agenda.

The minutes of the previous GA held during Eurospeech-97 in Rhodes, Greece, are read out by the president. They have also been displayed on the ESCA website for a long time.

The minutes are unanimously approved by the General Assembly.

2. President's Report

In his report, Roger Moore outlines ESCA's main activities in the last two years. He first introduces the members of the current ESCA Board. Due to the implementation of the statute changes [beschlossen] in 1997 Mária Gósy (Hungary) could become a full member of the Board. Christian Benoît (France), ESCA Secretary since 1993, suddenly died in April 1998 at the age of 41. His untimely death was a shock to the Association. To his memory ESCA established the Christian Benoît Mentoring Scheme which is targeted at young and inexperienced researchers to help them in preparing good submissions and good presentations at conferences and workshops. ESCA also supports the Christian Benoît Award initiated by the Institut de Communication Parlée in Grenoble.

As a consequence of Christian Benoît's death the ESCA Secretariat had to move away from Grenoble. Wolfgang Hess (Germany) was appointed ESCA's secretary, and in August 1998 the secretariat was transferred from Grenoble to Bonn. ESCA expresses its heartfelt thanks to the ICP and to Pierre Escudier, its director, for their steadfast support over many years. Membership administration and finance has stayed in the hands of ESCA's administrative secretary Emmanuelle Petchot-Gardia and was relocated from Grenoble to Perpignan.

Formal advice from a French tax adviser caused ESCA to implement a new membership scheme which has been applied since autumn 1998. As a non-profit organization with its legal seat in France, ESCA's purpose is to serve its members. As ESCA-sponsored conferences and workshops contribute to ESCA's income, each participant of such event - including Eurospeech'99 - will automatically become a member at the time of the event unless she/he explicitly denies membership. To make the [Laufzeit] of this membership independent from the date of the event, membership is decoupled from a calendar year and is synchronized with the respective workshop or conference. As there has been some confusion among the members about when their membership expires, a mail will be sent out to all members during September giving them this information. All new members who entered ESCA via Eurospeech'99 will be members until August 2000, those having registered for the two years' special package will be members until August 2001.

The Advisory Council was constituted in 1997 consisting of twenty colleagues. Its duty is to give advice to the Board on request or of its own will.

ESCA's publications comprise: the ESCA website (www.esca-speech.org) which was professionally redesigned in autumn 1998, workshop and conference proceedings, and the journal Speech Communication published by Elsevier (Amsterdam). ESCA members are entitled to subscribe to Speech Communication at a much reduced rate.

ESCA's publications comprise: the ESCA website (www.esca-speech.org) which was professionally redesigned in autumn 1998, workshop and conference proceedings, and the journal Speech Communication published by Elsevier (Amsterdam). ESCA members are entitled to subscribe to Speech Communication at a much reduced rate.

Many workshops (ESCA Tutorial and Research Workshop, ETRW) were carried out. They are popular and give good results. For the future more ETRWs and workshops are encouraged. SIGs will play a major role in such workshops.

The development of the major speech conferences since 1989 (Eurospeech and ICSLP) shows an always increasing number of submissions. It is time to question the form of these international conferences which otherwise become bigger and bigger and thus [unüberschaubar]. Alternative presentation forms, such as the Education Arena at Eurospeech'99, are desirable and will be looked for as one of the options at future Eurospeech conferences, especially Eurospeech 2001.

The 1999 ESCA Medal for outstanding scientific achievement was awarded to Fred Jelinek (USA) "for outstanding contributions to the development of automatic speech recognition". A unique award, the Special Service Medal, was given to Joseph Mariani (France) "for his key role as the first President of the Association and for the establishment of the Eurospeech series of conferences".

The President's report is unanimously approved by the General Assembly.

3. Treasurer's Report

ESCA's treasurer, Paul Dalsgaard (Denmark), explains ESCA's financial situation. ESCA's income comes from regular membership fees, membership fees resulting from Eurospeech conferences and ETRWs, and from the sale of ESCA conference proceedings. Due to the biannual Eurospeech conference there is a strong two-year fluctuation in membership and income. The figures for 1997 and 1998 are: In 1997 income 92,000 EUR, expenses 36,000 EUR; in 1998 income 33,000 EUR, expenses 40,700 EUR. Part of the extra expenses in 1998 was due to the relocation of the secretariat and for opening a new office in Perpignan. The balance of the account is roughly twice as high as the expenses for one year. This means that the Association is able to survive for at least two years without income.

There are some questions from the audience [J. Mariani (France), M. Wagner(Australia)]. It is made clear that ESCA does not intend to make profit. The fact that there is money on the bank account is not dangerous with respect to taxes as long as ESCA continues spending the money to serve its members. ESCA's money is deposited on special interest accounts [Festgeld]

The Treasurer's report is unanimously approved by the General Assembly.

4. Internationalization

In the eleven years of its existence, ESCA has changed from a small EEC-supported European organization to a fully independent, European-based international association. Now 35% of its members come from outside Europe (23% from the USA). Its major conference, Eurospeech, was a great success from the beginning on, and the fact that Eurospeech was sponsored by an association which assured continuity was very beneficial to the development of this conference series. The other big speech conference, International Conference on Spoken Language Processing (ICSLP), does not have a supporting association like ESCA. Therefore the ESCA Board wondered in 1998 if the Permanent Council of ICSLP (PC-ICSLP) would be open to ESCA providing itself as the sponsoring organization to ICSLP.

Roger Moore drafts the chronology of the events that led to today's proposal to internationalize ESCA, and if the principal decision by the General Assembly is positive, to make the appropriate changes in the statutes (see Topic 5 of this agenda). After a positive decision of the Board in September 1998, Roger Moore sent a letter to the PC-ICSLP asking if the PC-ICSLP could accept ESCA being the sponsoring association for ICSLP some time in the future. The PC-ICSLP discussed this during ICSLP-98 in December 1998 and wrote back to the ESCA Board that the strong European flavor of ESCA is seen as a major obstacle to negotiations about this point, and that an internationalization of ESCA would be a pre-condition for further negotiations. The ESCA Board discussed this in February 1999 and performed plans for internationalization. Besides the strategic relationships with related international organizations and events, (especially with ICSLP) the Board found that an internationalization would increase the stability and size of ESCA's membership base In March the Advisory Council was asked; the great majority of the responses was very positive. In July the members were informed by the ESCA president via ESCAPad #15. If the General Assembly's decision is positive, the modified statutes can be deposited at the Prefecture in Grenoble (ESCA's official seat) during October, and the new scheme can be applied from January 2000 on. - Roger Moore then displays the core of the proposal containing the following four points.

  1. To change our name to the "International Speech Communication Association" (ISCA) or to the "International Spoken Language Association" (ISLA);
  2. Each Board position to be open to any Full Member of the Association.
  3. The number of Board positions to be extended from ten to fourteen posts;
  4. A maximum of two Board members from any one country.

Roger Moore then proposes to first discuss Proposals 2 through 4 and to proceed to the question of the future name of the Association thereafter.

In the following discussion, N. Campbell (Japan) asks for negative comments from the Advisory Council. There were no negative comments, but some points of concern were raised: a) the future name of the Association, b) status of and relationship to the journal Speech Communication, c) questions about the expanded board (which led to Proposal 4), practicality of holding Board meetings with Board members from all over the world (at least one two-day meeting per year in conjunction with Eurospeech and ICSLP regardless of ICSLP's status end increase of e-mail exchange which is already very efficient), e) regional grouping which would lead to new opportunities; f) possible competition with the IEEE. As to this last point, competition between ICASSP and ICSLP or Eurospeech is already avoided by holding ICASSP in the first and the other conferences in the second half of the year.

There are some comments from the audience [A. Eriksson (Sweden) and others] expressing their concern about weakening the European position. - H. Fujisaki (Japan) emphasizes that ICSLP is healthy even without a mother organization behind it as the PC-ICSLP has a truly international composition, and that ESCA's internationalization and its relationship to the PC-ICSLP should be kept separate. The most important aspect in the process of internationalization, however, is the question of regional representation, a point which is then explained in further detail by Lin-Shan Lee (Taiwan) who summarizes recent discussions among colleagues from East Asia and Australia. 1) It is believed that the general direction to have a world-wide organization in the domain is very good; 2) the proposal made in this General Assembly is only a first step which has to be followed by many more; 3) mechanisms must be developed to really serve the members in all areas of the world. There are countries where prospective members are not able to pay additional membership fees or to travel abroad. Lee therefore proposes to set up regional associations, for instance in Asia, which can establish co-sponsored events and mutual promotion; ISCA could be advertised in regional publication and vice versa. There could be some kind of dual membership within ISCA and an Asian society; in this way ISCA could develop its membership in Asia, and the Asian societies could globalize themselves via ISCA. There could be mutual journal subscriptions at reduced rates. Finally, a regional society could provide a voice which is better heard in Asia than that of ISCA in the proposed form. H. Fujisaki adds that subordinate regional societies would not compete but work together. Different membership fees for different countries could be established.

R. Moore congratulates the colleagues to their deep thinking about this planning. The current structure of ESCA allows all these proposals to be implemented because almost nothing is fixed in the statutes. Associate membership is possible and already thought of; differentiated membership rates are possible. The Board encourages regional branching and provides the framework for such managements, but is strongly against a forced division into regions.

A. Eriksson repeats his concern about the European position within an internationalized ESCA and claims a European regional representation to be needed besides others. J. Mariani emphasizes that going international does not mean uniformity; on the contrary regional diversity of cultures and countries must be preserved; however, a truly international (umbrella) association in the domain is needed. Better than creating a new association, one should take an existing one, such as ESCA, give it an international shape, and allow for establishing regional chapters just as and where they would like to be established. The discussions leads to a formal motion to the Assembly which is formulated by M. Wagner: "That the Board be charged with conducting discussions and negotiations with regional speech and language science and technology bodies with a view to establish a truly international structure which will serve both regional and global needs."

This motion is accepted unanimously by the General Assembly and added as Proposal #5 to the above list of proposals.

R. Moore emphasizes that support of disadvantaged colleagues has already been established within ESCA. More resources would enable ESCA to give more support. As to the composition of the Board, R. Moore makes clear that with the expansion of the Board (which is not a minor change but would go without changing the statutes) five new positions (including that of Roberto Billi who resigns from the Board) would be immediately open, and another election must be held in 2001 when four members of the current Board have to resign because their term is over. L. Pols (Netherlands) draws the discussion back to the spirit of internationalization; the new, enlarged Board should come up with solutions.

It is also asked if the vote should be done by a ballot, and if there is a quorum for the General Assembly to make decisions. ESCA's statutes do not specify a quorum but they specify that statutes changed must be decided upon by the General Assembly. This forces the present General Assembly to vote here and now or to delay the whole issue until the next General Assembly at Eurospeech 2001.

As there is no motion for adjourning the issue, R. Moore starts the voting procedure. The General Assembly agrees not to vote by secret ballot. The first vote goes for Proposals 2, 3 and 4 of the above list.

Result: 46 votes in favor, 1 against, 4 abstentions. Proposals 2 through 4 are thus accepted by the General Assembly.

Without further discussion the General Assembly votes, as a consequence of this decision, if the name of the Association should be changed or not. This does not imply any decision of what the new name of the Association would be.

Result: 35 votes in favor of a name change, 10 against, 13 abstentions. The General Assembly thus decides that ESCA's name will be changed.

There is no further discussion about the two proposals made by the board (ISCA and ISLA), and no further alternatives are proposed. The General Assembly thus votes for one of these two alternatives.

Result: 45 votes for ISCA, 5 votes for ISLA. The General Assembly thus decides that the future name of the Association be ISCA (International Speech Communication Association).

M. Wagner gives the exact wording of his motion to the General Assembly (see above) which is unanimously accepted.

5. Statute Changes

With one exception (Article A6.3) all the changes proposed are due to ESCA's internationalization. Roger Moore points out that the version of the statutes to be deposited in Grenoble have to be in French. The General Assembly agrees to voting on the English translation. Correct re-translation of the modified articles into French is assured. The proposed modifications are as follows (new wordings in boldface, deleted wordings in italics and strikethrough).

Statutes of the Association "E ISCA"