The Official News & Technical Journal Of The International Society For Pharmacoeconomics And Outcomes Research
Fireside Chat: The Future Belongs to the People Who Plan It

Peter Davey, MD, FRCP, 2002-2003 ISPOR President

Yogi Berra famously observed, "It is tough making predictions, especially about the future." Actually, the statement is not as incompatible as it seems at first sight. ISPOR can face the future in two ways. The first is to agree on specific goals and make sure that the organisation works towards these goals over the next five to ten years. The second is to try to predict what is going to happen and then react to it. Yogi Berra was right. The second approach is doomed.

ISPOR�s Board of Directors serve for two years and its President serves on the Board for three years. This ensures that the Board is constantly refreshed with new ideas and energy and also that as many Members as possible have a chance to join the Board. However, it also means that the entire Board membership will change 5 times over the next 10 years.

Clearly ISPOR needs continuity as well as new ideas. We are going to establish a long-term planning committee, which will be chaired by the Incoming President. Sean Sullivan will be the first Chair of this Committee and the Board has asked him to identify eight members. Two will be past Presidents, two will be past Board members and four will be ISPOR members who have not served on the Board. The Long Term Planning Committee will be established in time for detailed discussions about ISPOR�s future plans at the ISPOR Leadership Retreat in November.

ISPOR already has well-established, long-term goals:

(i) Expanding membership
(ii) Increasing member benefits
(iii) Develop and implement revenue generating projects
(iv) Bridging the gaps between research, policy, practice and health
(v) Becoming more outward looking and international

The challenge for the Long Term Planning Committee is to set targets for achieving these goals and to ensure that there is continuity to support new Board members.

The ISPOR Leadership Retreat on November 5th/6th will allow the ISPOR Board, Committee Chairs and Special Interest Group Chairs to discuss these ideas in detail.

We need to hear from you. Where would you like ISPOR to be in 10 years? Do you have ideas for specific targets that ISPOR should be working towards? Please email your suggestions to

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