The end of any year is a good time for reflection and assessment, but this has been a year like no other. We have all been touched by the COVID-19 pandemic, and many of us have lost family, friends, and colleagues. As more people worked from home and faced recurring travel restrictions, IGA members, and Board endeavored to provide more online content and opportunities. The feedback so far has been enthusiastic, with requests for more content in more languages, and we agree! Check the website or social media for updates. And please share any new content from your institution or country! Thank you.
The International Goat Association typically holds the International Goat Conference every four years, but COVID required that we postpone it. The new dates are October 3-8, 2021, and it will still be in Eger, Hungary, but check the IGA website for updates. Here is the ICG Conference website: www.icg2020.org.
The IGA Board of Directors held two virtual meetings this year, on March 24 and October 2, plus a Strategic Planning meeting on December 7. I give special thanks to all of the Board members who have agreed to extend their terms an additional year due to COVID and who also participated in our online and Zoom discussions with great enthusiasm and insight. The new IGA Strategic Plan will be posted on the website once finalized, and it will guide us through the changing world we will find in 2021 and onwards. I want to commend the Strategic Planning Committee, chaired by Davinia Sánchez, and committee members Jean-Marie Luginbuhl, Dilip Bhandari, and Paula Menzies for guiding this crucial process for IGA to increase activity, visibility, and impact.
In October 2020, the beautiful new IGA logo and website design was launched (https://www.iga-goatworld.com/). This effort was organized by Executive Director Christian DeVries, with logo design by Evans Torres. IGA Latin America also has a new Facebook page (in Spanish) at https://www.facebook.com/IGA.Espanol/. More changes to improve access and functionality of the website and social media will be coming, so please send Christian any comments or suggestions to improve it at firstname.lastname@example.org.
IGA Regional Directors (RDs) and Country Representatives (CRs) are the means for IGA to address local and national issues and enhance our network’s impact. The full list of CRs is found here: https://www.iga-goatworld.com/country_representatives.html. I warmly welcome one new Regional Director and ten new IGA Country Representatives:
While we are all grateful that COVID vaccines are slowly becoming available worldwide, we realize it may be months or longer before everyone is protected. Therefore, we will continue to create and share more virtual content about goats, their products, and ecosystems in 2021. Here is a short sample of some of the wonderful webinars, symposia, and online resources that IGA members and their institutions shared in 2020:
Our journal Small Ruminant Research continues to publish some of the best new research on goats, sheep, and camelids. Kudos to Executive Editor Yan Landau and the team of editors who uphold the high standards. Unfortunately, our publisher Elsevier has announced a price increase for the journal, so we must pass this onto our members. As of January 1, 2021, any membership with online access to SRR will increase by $5.
On behalf of the Board of Directors, I wish all our members and friends a meaningful holiday season and best wishes for a New Year of health, prosperity, and peace.
Beth A. Miller, DVM
The International Goat Association promotes goat research and development for the benefit of humankind, to alleviate poverty, to promote prosperity and to improve the quality of life.