About IVS

Historical Documents

This section presents a brief history of the events leading up to the formation of IVS.

In May 1997 the CSTG Chairman initiated discussions about a VLBI service that would operate in a manner similar to the IGS. By September the CSTG VLBI Subcommission, chaired by Thomas Clark of NASA Goddard Space Flight Center, published a draft Terms of Reference. At the end of the year Dr. Clark resigned as chairman of the VLBI Subcommission and James Campbell of the Geodetic Institute of the University of Bonn was appointed as chairman.

Community response to the draft Terms of Reference was strong, and an electronic workshop was convened to re-write the Terms. The workshop members met only via e-mail during February and March 1998. Different members of the workshop with varying areas of expertise re-wrote sections of the Terms and all the members reviewed them. It was at this point that the name IVS was determined, following a lively debate among the workshop members about the mandate for the organization.

In April 1998 the new Terms of Reference were presented to the CSTG Executive Committee for approval at a meeting held in Nice, France. See section 3 for a summary of the Terms. At this time the VLBI Subcommission formed a Steering Committee to do the work of establishing the IVS.

The Steering Committee released the Call for Participation in IVS on 1 June 1998, and proposals were received through the end of September. At its meeting in October in Munich, Germany, the Steering Committee evaluated the proposals and decided to accept all of them. See section 4 for a summary of the results.

In mid-November 1998 the Steering Committee released the Call for Nominations for representative positions on the Directing Board. Also released was the Call for Proposals for the positions of Network, Analysis, and Technology Coordinators. Following the close of nominations the general elections were held via e-mail ballots.

The Steering Committee held its final meeting in January 1999 at Goddard Space Flight Center to form the initial IVS Directing Board. The Board members were selected based on the proposals for Coordinators, the elections, and nominations for At Large positions. See section 5 for the list of the members of the initial Directing Board.

The following links provide the documentation for the events described above.

Formation of IVS

Terms of Reference

Component Proposals