Dear LERA members, In this letter I will focus on the reinvigoration of the LERA. In particular, our new independent meeting format offers a great opportunity to give expression to more voices and points of view. At the 65th Annual LERA Meeting, which will be held during June 6-9, 2013 in St. Louis, Missouri, four constituencies will be “in play”:
I strongly encourage you to submit creative proposals for inclusion in the 65th Annual LERA meeting and to do so by the October 5, 2012 deadline.
While scholarly research has tended to dominate past annual LERA meetings and will surely have a prominent place in the 65th meeting, the new four-constituency format opens the field for more diverse proposals and presentation formats. These include discussion panels, debates, roundtables and “how-to” workshops.
In particular, chapter members and practitioners are encouraged to propose sessions with practical professional development content, such as best practices, case studies, training and certification. Public policy-based session proposals will be most welcome, especially if they focus on the health care and defense sectors. Members of our industry councils,such as automobile, construction and higher education, and interest sections, such as collective bargaining, labor and employment law, and international industrial relations, should consider proposing sessions dealing with the latest research, trends and practices in these specialty areas.
Program sessions at the 65th annual LERA meeting will be 120 minutes long. A typical session features a chair, three or four presenters/panelists, and one or two discussants. During most sessions, the last half-hour or so is devoted to audience questions, comments and interaction with presenters/panelists. However, proposals for alternative session formats are encouraged and will be welcomed. For complete details and submission information, please click here.
The Program Committee is especially interested in proposals that offer the prospect for stimulating discussion and debate between academic and practitioner members of the LERA. This means that practitioners can be included in academically oriented sessions and, correspondingly, that academic members can be included in practitioner-oriented sessions. More broadly, we encourage meeting attendees to sample and participate in all four of the constituency type sessions identified above.
I cannot overstate the importance of the new independent LERA meeting. This “noble experiment” has been several years in the making. The Program Committee is bringing its best thinking to bear on the design and content of the 65th meeting. Equally if not more important is your attendance at and participation in the meeting, which can be for the full meeting or selected meeting days. The 2013 St. Louis meeting will serve as the Beta test for the LERA’s new independence and program architecture; therefore, you will be part of this Beta test. The results of this test will be used to help plan the 66th Annual LERA meeting, which will be held in Portland, Oregon during June 2014.
Longer term, the 65th LERA Annual meeting's four constituency design foreshadows a more inclusive organization, especially the opportunity to bridge the national organization-local chapter gap. Such inclusiveness will enhance our ability to use academic research to help fashion solutions to national, regional and local challenges involving job creation, wage stagnation, retirement income, health care, work-family life balance, employee voice, labor-management relations, and more. Doing so requires the active, committed participation of all LERA constituencies, especially local chapter members. The 65th Annual LERA meeting provides a major opportunity for all of us to demonstrate such active commitment and participation.
Thank you for all you do for LERA.
David Lewin, LERA President
LERA President David Lewin, the Neil H. Jacoby Chair in Management at the UCLA Anderson School of Management, has been a LERA member since 1967.