Minutes of the Meetings of the International Board during the 39th International Physics Olympiad in Hanoi (Vietnam) July 20 – 29, 2008

1. The following 82 countries were present at the 39 th International Olympiad:

    Albania, Argentina, Armenia, Australia, Austria, Azerbaijan, Belarus, Belgium, Bosnia & Herzegovina, Brazil, Brunei, Bulgaria, Cambodia, Canada, Chile (*), China, Colombia, Croatia, Cuba, Cyprus, Czech Republic, Denmark, Estonia, Finland, France, Georgia, Germany, Great Britain, Greece, Hong Kong, Hungary, Iceland, India, Indonesia, Iran, Ireland, Israel, Italy, Japan, Kazakhstan, Kuwait, Kyrgyzstan, Latvia, Liechtenstein, Lithuania, Macau, Macedonia, Malaysia, Mexico, Moldova, Mongolia, Nepal, The Netherlands, Nigeria, Norway, Pakistan, The Philippiness, Poland, Portugal, Puerto Rico (**), Romania, Russia, Saudi Arabia, Serbia, Singapore, Slovakia, Slovenia, South Korea, Spain, Sri Lanka, Suriname, Sweden, Switzerland, Syria (*), Taiwan (Chinese Taipei), Tajikistan, Thailand, Turkey, Turkmenistan, Ukraine, USA and Vietnam.

    (*) - new countries invited by the Organizing Committee to the Olympiads this year,

    (**) - invited by the Organizing Committee as a guest team.

    2. Results of marking the papers by the organisers were presented.

    The best score (44,6 points) was achieved by Longzhi Tan from China (Absolute winner of the 39th IPhO). The following limits for awarding the medals and the honourable mention were established according to the Statutes:
      Gold Medal  33 points
      Silver Medal   
      26 points
      Bronze Medal   
      21 points
      Honourable Mention  
      14 points

      According to the limits 46 Gold Medals, 47 Silver Medals, 78 Bronze Medals and 87 Honourable Mentions were awarded. The list of the scores of the winners and the students awarded with honourable mentions were distributed to all the delegations.

    3. In addition to the regular prizes the following special prizes were awarded: 4. At the beginning of the first meeting of the International Board the President of the IPhOs informed the audience that the Indonesian leader Dr. Rachmat Widodo Adi had passed away on 13th April 2008. She read the words of memory written by Professor Yohanes Surya. After this the International Board commemorated Dr. Rachmat Widodo Adi with a Minute of Silence.

    5. During the discussion of the third theoretical problem a subcommittee consisting of Dr. Jaan Kalda (Estonia), Dr. Florence Robine (France), and Dr. Matthew Verdon (Australia), was formed. Together with the members of the Academic Committee they prepared an improved version of the text by taking into account the remarks expressed during the preliminary discussion.

    6. At the beginning of the second meeting of the International Board Dr. José Luis Morán López, President of the Organizing Committee IPhO-40, Mexico, told the audience about the state of preparations of the next Olympiad. After this the three presidential candidates Prof. Helmuth Mayr (Austria), Dr. Hans Jordens (The Netherlands), and Prof. Jan Mostowski (Poland), presented themselves and their ideas about the future of the IPhOs followed by a short discussion.

    7. At the third meeting of the International Board the presidential election was carried out according to a secret ballot. Dr. Hans Jordens (The Netherlands) was elected new president.

    8. During the grading of the students’ solutions the local graders consulted the following four leaders designated to this work by the International Board: Dr. Andrzej Kotlicki (Canada), Dr. Juan Leon (Spain), Dr. Leong Chuan Kwek (Singapore), and Dr. Mohammad Sepehry Rad (Iran), about some problems concerning the interpretation of the criteria etc.

    9. The International Board had been presented three proposals to change the Statutes or Regulations. (The texts of the proposals had been disseminated to all leaders more than three months in advance). The first proposal to change § 10 of the Statutes presented by Prof. Helmuth Mayr (Secretary) concerned the determination of the number of members voting. The second proposal formulated by Dr. Jaan Kalda (Estonia), Prof. Helmuth Mayr (Secretary), and Dr. Gunnar Friege (Germany) referred to the awarding system used at the Olympiads. The third proposal presented by Prof. Maija Ahtee (President) and Prof. Helmuth Mayr (Secretary) concerned the rules for the election of the secretary. All these proposals were accepted with small corrections.

    10. The Vietnamese delegates handed out printed materials about the IPHO-2008 to all delegations.

    11. At the end of the Olympiad, acting on behalf of the organizers of the next International Physics Olympiad, Dr. José Luis Morán López, announced that the 40th International Physics Olympiad will be organized in Mérida, Mexico on July 11th – 19th 2009 and cordially invited all the participating countries to attend the competition.
    Prof. Phan Hong Khoi
    Deputy Chairman of the
    Organizing Comittee
    Prof. Nguyen The Khoi
    Deputy Chairman of the
    Academic Comittee
    Prof. Prof.Maija Ahtee
    Acting president
    of the IPhOs
    Prof.Helmuth Mayr
    of the IPhOs

    Hanoi, August 2008