So okay, I’m still working on several responses to the post on In the Library wth a Lead Pipe and I took a math detour while spinning my wheels on my regular day job stuff.
How much does it cost to go to a Library Conference?
(I’m using on-site registration $$)
CiL = $469 / 3 days of programs
IL = $449 / 3 days of programs
ALA MW = $300 non-member / $190 personal member / 5 days of working meetings and discussion groups
ALA Annual = $370 non-member / $260 personal member (no citation but I think this is acceptably close to accurate) / 5 days (with 300+ programs, plus committee meetings and other events)
But ALA Annual is *big* (freally big ~20K people) and ALA MW is about half that size (and still fvery large)
Are ALA conferences really that expensive? Should presenters be givien a “bye” on registration? Here’s where my (limited) math skills come in to play.
300 programs (some have only 1 presenter, some have 2, some are panels of up to 5 or occasionally 6) so I’ll use a multiplier here (pulling this out of my… ear) say average of 1.75 presenters / program.
300 programs * 1.75 presenters = ~525 “complimentary registrations”
525 comps * $260 for on site registration = wait for it… $136,000 or $68,250 if a special half-rate applies to presenters.
Is the potential draw for comp’d speakers going to at least come close to covering this amount? I wouldn’t hazard a guess, but I would hope so. Various sub-units of ALA have differing practices on this – I’d love to see BigALA go this route, but I doubt it would fly.
If you had the chance, how would you restructure ALA’s conference finances in a revenue-neutral way? Feel free to blog it somewhere (Jason did a long while back) or post your thoughts to the Improve ALA wiki at: http://improveala.pbwiki.com/