Dear IAML Colleagues and Friends,
The year 2020 has almost ended, a year that has been so different from any other year, a year during which the pandemic hit us all. The pandemic is still raging, more than ever in many parts of the world, but there is light at the horizon, several vaccines have been developed and are right now being approved of by the health authorities of our different countries. I hope that we will be able to meet and interact in ways that are more traditional in not so many months from now.
However, the year 2021 will most likely also be a hard year with many limitations to our usual activities. The IAML Board has also had to take that into consideration when planning meetings and congresses. Therefore at our last Board meeting on the 10th of December the Board made the very difficult decision to make the 2021 IAML Congress a completely virtual event. There will be a Congress next year, but we will meet online and not face-to-face. Even if the world might be on its way to opening up again by July, it is still too risky to book a full congress venue, to which not many people might come. Travel limitations will most likely prevail for all of us also next year.
The organisers of the IAML Congress in Prague have been very understanding and helpful, making it possible to cancel what had already been booked and make plans for the future. Therefore, we are very happy to announce that the IAML Congress in Prague will be moved to July 2022. We so much look forward to seeing many of you there!
As you might know, other applications have been received for congresses after Prague. Actually, the Board went through most applications at its midyear Board meeting in February-March and we had planned to present them for voting at the General Assembly this year.
Instead, I would like to inform you that during our next, virtual, General Assembly in July 2021, the Board will ask the membership to vote on the following proposed congresses and venues after Prague 2022:
- Cambridge, United Kingdom, 2023
- Stellenbosch, South Africa, 2024
- Salzburg, Austria, 2025
Full applications with background material will be sent to you in good time before the General Assembly.
As far as IAML Online 2021 is concerned, further details will be made available as soon as possible, early next year.
Finally, in addition to the virtual congress next year, the Board also plans to organise bi-monthly online seminars, panels and discussions, like the one that is happening now on the 15th of December. They will all be free of charge; all you need to do is to sign up. It will be a great way to remain in contact with colleagues and friends that you are not able to meet for several years now – and of course stay up-to-date with developments in our professional field.
Despite times not looking so good this December, I still would like to wish you all a very Happy New Year and keep up the good work! Stay strong and stay safe! We’ll meet again soon!
IAML Secretary General