2014 President's Message


Robert Weigel ( r.weigel@ieee.org) is with the University of Erlangen-Nuremberg, Germany and is the 2014 president of the MTT-S.

I am extremely honored to have been elected to serve as 2014 president of our Society, the Microwave Theory and Techniques Society, MTT-S. Our Society is a transnational society with more than 11000 members and 175 chapters worldwide and, for more than 60 years, it has been promoting the advancement of the professional standing of its members and has been enhancing the quality of life for all people through the development and application of RF, microwave, millimeter-wave, and terahertz technologies. Our Society is an all-volunteer society, driven to excellence by its leadership, with the active participation of all its world-wide members. Currently, our MTT Society is clearly one of IEEE’s premier societies and is by far the Number One of all professional associations operating in the global RF and microwave arena. So, the MTT-S is in a very good position. However, we cannot sit back and relax because RF and microwaves is always on the move. This, of course, has been the case in the past, too, but nowadays things can change much faster than in the past. There are ongoing trends in content distribution, knowledge access, education, in the membership models of scientific societies, in strategic or temporal partnering with other societies or groups, in the way how conferences and exhibitions are organized, in the publication business, in the field of standards, and in the knowledge business that may or will affect our business. I think that the current areas of focus of our society are well defined, and that we are, in general, also in a good shape with the definition of our near-future directions. Therefore it is obvious that my plan as the MTT-S 2014 President is to continue with our current activities and execution processes, i.e., evolution instead of revolution is on my agenda. However, I would like to set priorities in my one year presidency:

  • It is of paramount importance that we consistently work not only to keep but to expand our worldwide leading position with respect to (i) microwave conferences and to (ii) microwave publications by always operating at the forefront and by keeping the quality of presentations and published papers as high as possible.
  • A second issue which I plan to address prominently is our outreach. As a university professor; I am aware of what students are thinking, and the students’ views have changed in the last decade. And as a European who is frequently traveling in North America, Asia, and Europe, I know that the attitudes of people from different countries are different.
  • A third thing is that I plan to invest more efforts in adopting emerging technologies by the MTT-S. RF and microwave technologies are penetrating more application areas, and they are enlarging their impact from the component level all the way up to the system level. This is especially true for emerging application areas such as industrial automation, life sciences, security, logistics, mobility, energy saving, and environmental protection where high growth rates are expected. In all these areas, microwave technologies are crucial to the competiveness of companies and entire industry sectors, as these technologies provide pertinent key enabling functionalities and are thus a driving force behind numerous product innovation activities. In particular, microwave technologies play a key role in nearly all high-speed communication, sensing and localization applications. They are therefore indispensable for all wireless and most wired signal transmission applications. The global demand for affordable technical solutions ensuring a high degree of interconnectivity will increase immensely in the years to come. And these development trends will greatly influence the future of microwave technologies and therefore touch the broad spectrum and the territory of our Society.
  • Finally, I plan to evaluate which strategic or temporal alliances or kind of partnerships will help us to better reach our goals.

As mentioned, our Society is an all-volunteer society and thus, the selfless dedication of our volunteers is of paramount importance for the well-being of the MTT-S. Volunteers organize our conferences, workshops, tutorials, and professional education programs. They lead our publications and review the submitted papers. And they serve on our local chapters, our technical committees and our Administrative Committee (AdCom). It is a privilege for me as president to be able to work closely with all these dedicated volunteers. I am an MTT-S member since 1988, and in 1988 I attended for the first time the IEEE International Microwave Symposium (IMS) in New York City. Since then, I have been attending all IMS events, i.e., the attendance of IMS 2013 in Seattle was my 26th attendance of an IMS. Since 1993, I have been continuously serving for our Society in several committees and roles. It has always been a pleasure for me to work with my volunteering colleagues towards the well-being of the international microwave community; several long lasting friendships have evolved from our many meetings and discussions. Following Roger Pollard of the United Kingdom and Jozef Modelski of Poland, I am the third non-US president of our Society. Since I am holding both the German and the Austrian citizenship, let me say, I am both the first German as well as the first Austrian MTT-S president.

Madhu Gupta has done an outstanding job leading our Society in 2013 and in increasing our footprint in the global RF and microwave community. The handover from him to me has been perfect. I would like to congratulate Tim Lee on his election as 2015 MTT-S president-elect and promise a handover from me to him with the same level of perfectiveness. I would like to announce and congratulate the newly elected members to the MTT-S AdCom. They are Tom Brazil, Wei Hong, Joy Laskar, Mohammad Madihian, Sergio Pacheco, James Rautio, and Steve Reising. I look forward to working closely with Tim Lee and all the members of our AdCom over the course of this year. Our Society is here to serve you. If you have ideas for improving the MTT-S, we would love to hear from you; please feel free to email me.