International Society for Traumatic Stress Studies

Electronic Journal Access and New Dues Structures Offer Choices for ISTSS Members

Posted 1 October 2005 in StressPoints by ISTSS Membership Committee

The move to a new publisher for the Journal of Traumatic Stress means greatly expanded online access to journal content for ISTSS members. At its midyear meeting in Stockholm, the ISTSS board also approved new dues structures that provide more options for members and more affordable membership fees for members around the world. These decisions are responsive to member feedback about dues levels and build on careful work by many members of the Finance, International Structure and Affiliations, and Membership committees.

Electronic Journal Access and New Dues Options
New for 2006, all ISTSS members will have electronic access to the Journal of Traumatic Stress. This new member benefit provides full-text online access to the journal from Volume 11 (1998) through the present. With the advent of electronic journal access, ISTSS members also will have more choices with regard to annual membership dues.

ISTSS membership dues have been stable for the past three years, as ISTSS leadership strove to balance rising costs with the need to keep dues as low as possible. Though increased costs might have necessitated a simple dues increase for 2006, the availability of electronic journal access has provided a creative new option. With the 2006 membership year, for the first time ISTSS will offer two options for membership dues. Members can choose to pay US$135 annual dues that will include electronic-only access to the Journal of Traumatic Stress and to Traumatic StressPoints, or US$155 annual dues that will include both electronic access and receipt of the print journal and newsletter. (2005 regular membership dues are US$145.) Student members and retired members also will have the option to select electronic-only access vs. electronic and print. 2006 student members’ dues are US$65 (electronic) or US$85 (print); retired members have the option of US$100 (electronic) or US$120 (print).

These changes come in response to member feedback about minimizing dues increases and providing electronic access to the journal. With the new dues structure, ISTSS passes on the benefits and savings of electronic publications to members, while continuing to offer print publications for those who wish to receive them.

International Dues Structure
One of ISTSS’s great strengths is the international scope of its interests and its membership. Though the largest number of members live in North America, current ISTSS members come from 43 countries on six continents. This diversity of perspectives and experiences strengthens the society. Yet feedback from members (and potential members) has clearly indicated that dues levels can be a barrier to ISTSS participation from colleagues around the world, especially colleagues in countries with significantly different income levels. In order to help make ISTSS membership affordable for traumatic stress professionals in all parts of the world, the ISTSS board has approved a new graduated membership dues schedule.

Beginning with the 2006 membership year, dues will be set at 100 percent, 75 percent, 50 percent, or 25 percent of full membership dues, based on World Bank categories for each country’s income level. This membership fee includes electronic access to the Journal of Traumatic Stress and to Traumatic StressPoints. Members outside the U.S. who wish to receive the print journal and newsletter in addition to electronic access will pay an additional charge to cover postage costs. Members who qualify for more than one discounted rate will receive the greater discount (e.g., student or retired members from a country with a 25 percent dues rate would pay the 25 percent regular member rate).

The aim of the graduated dues structure is to even the financial burden for potential ISTSS members worldwide and to strengthen and broaden international participation in the society. This effort is part of a range of initiatives to encourage the broadest possible participation in ISTSS. For example, an increasing number of ISTSS materials are being produced in multiple languages; attendance at the ISTSS annual meeting is supported by a limited number of travel grants for members from developing nations; and orientation sessions at the 2005 annual meeting will be offered in English, Spanish and French to help first-time attendees make the most of their experience.

The ISTSS Membership Committee is concerned with member benefits and services, with the recruitment and retention of ISTSS members, and with engaging the widest possible range of ISTSS members in the activities of the society. Membership Committee members include Harold Kudler, Joanne Davis, Nancy Kassam-Adams, Lori Stewart and Elisa Triffleman. For more information about new membership dues options, contact Membership Committee co-chairs Nancy Kassam-Adams at nlkaphd@mail.med.upenn.edu or Harold Kudler at hkudler@acpub.duke.edu.