Foundation for the Advancement of the Science and Technology of Light Sources

The International Scientific Committee (ISC) of the LS:X symposium series, an informal group of industry and university based scientists and engineers with a shared enthusiasm for light sources, assumes overall responsibility for their organisation. The major decisions it takes include, for example, the major one of choosing the venues for future meetings on the basis of proposals from aspirant local organisers. It also helps shape the symposia’s scientific programmes by identifying invited speakers who will address important, topical themes in light source science and technology, and by selecting a number of Landmark papers from the several hundreds of papers contributed by delegates as being significant in their field and likely to be of interest to a broad range of the delegates. It offers advice to the respective local organising committees based on its considerable collective experience of organising past symposia, advice that includes budgetary matters, helping to ensure that the series continues its impressive record of never having operated at a loss and, as a consequence, having to call upon the companies who act collectively as financial guarantors for the symposia.

For some time, the ISC has felt the need to create a more formal entity to represent the symposium series and ensure its successful continuance. There are several important reasons for doing so with perhaps the most important being the need to transfer the responsibility for decisions taken by the ISC from one where this rests ultimately on each individual member to one where a board of management assumes collective responsibility. Another important motivation was the need to protect the accumulated copyright of the invited and contributed papers given during the series of symposia to ensure that this was used only to the benefit of the LS:X symposia.

In 2006 the ISC identified the form of a non-profit entity that met its various criteria for supporting and promoting future symposia and proceeded to establish FAST-LS Ltd., a company limited by guarantee in accordance with the laws of England. The objectives of the company stated in its Memorandum of Association are as follows:

At the last meeting of the ISC the first board meeting of FAST-LS was convened and its first act was to invite the ISC members to become members of the board of management of FAST-LS. Except in one instance where this step created a conflict of interests, all of the present ISC have become members of FAST-LS. The meeting then appointed from the membership present the first Chairman (Robin Devonshire), Secretary (Georges Zissis) and Treasurer (John Stocks) of FAST-LS. The appointment of a Company Secretary (Richard Morton), to handle legal matters affecting the company, and bankers (NatWest Bank plc.) and accountants (Hawsons, Chartered Accountants) was also approved.

A FAST-LS website has been established (www.fast-ls.org) and will be developed to become the main conduit for communication and information for those involved in, or interested to learn about, the LS:X symposia and their associated activities.

Robin Devonshire
Chairman, FAST-LS Ltd.

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