ECF Finance meeting 2018

Debate directly related to English Chess Federation matters.
Alex Holowczak
Posts: 9085
Joined: Sat May 30, 2009 5:18 pm
Location: Oldbury, Worcestershire
Contact:

Re: ECF Finance meeting 2018

Post by Alex Holowczak » Wed May 02, 2018 10:03 am

Roger de Coverly wrote:
Tue May 01, 2018 11:55 pm
It's logical enough that female cricketers and footballers aren't able to challenge their male counterparts in direct competition. It's perhaps rather less obvious at chess. Whilst accepting the statistical result that the lack of female players in the top 100 could be down to the paucity of female players, how come the relative paucity of Norwegians didn't preclude a Norwegian world champion?
I suppose Carlsen is an outlier statistically. He didn't come from a country with a particularly strong chess pedigree, and that makes his achievements all the more remarkable. You do get them in other individual sports, though. There's no cultural reason why James Wattana should have got to #3 in the world at snooker, or why Raymond van Barneveld should have been so good at darts in the 1990s. Both of them have established a pedigree in Thailand and the Netherlands respectively as a result of their success; perhaps in a way that we will see in future in Norwegian chess thanks to Carlsen. The success of the Georgian women's team might be an example of this.

There was a game of cricket two years ago in my area, where women and men were in direct competition. Warwickshire's Under 14 team played a 50 over game against an England Women's Under 19 Development XI; presumably a sort of 2nd XI. I can't find the scorecard now - they've paywalled CricketArchive - but Warwickshire won quite comfortably from memory.

Alex Holowczak
Posts: 9085
Joined: Sat May 30, 2009 5:18 pm
Location: Oldbury, Worcestershire
Contact:

Re: ECF Finance meeting 2018

Post by Alex Holowczak » Wed May 02, 2018 10:04 am

Kevin Thurlow wrote:
Wed May 02, 2018 8:36 am
"the ECF should be involved in developing girls in the ECF Academy even if there are boys with a similar rating who miss out, just on the grounds of who can be most competitive internationally."

I can see that point of view, and it would be an improvement on helping female players who are much weaker than male players. But aiming for specific quotas is not a good idea (as the South African cricket team demonstrates).

I want our teams to do well in Olympiads etc., but chess is an individual game and I'm sure most people only play team chess if they think it will do them good. But if funding is available, I don't expect players representing England to do it free!
I don't think I was supporting quotas in my post - I was just saying that if you take the top x boys with the view of them one day being part of an England team, you should take the top x girls too with the view of them one day being part of the England women's team, even if their ratings are lower than the ratings of some boys.

Roger de Coverly
Posts: 19267
Joined: Tue Apr 15, 2008 2:51 pm

Re: ECF Finance meeting 2018

Post by Roger de Coverly » Wed May 02, 2018 10:22 am

Alex Holowczak wrote:
Wed May 02, 2018 10:03 am
The success of the Georgian women's team might be an example of this.
Back in the 1950s and 1960s, there were only a handful of non-Soviet male players able to compete as world top 20 against Soviet Union players. Notwithstanding the cultural position of chess in Georgia, none of their female players was ever able to compete on level terms with Spassky, Tal, Geller etc.

David Sedgwick
Posts: 4157
Joined: Mon Apr 09, 2007 5:56 pm
Location: Croydon

Re: ECF Finance meeting 2018

Post by David Sedgwick » Wed May 02, 2018 10:48 am

Alex Holowczak wrote:
Tue May 01, 2018 10:45 pm
In my opinion, the raison d'être of the ECF is to run England teams in the Olympiad, or more generally, provide opportunities for English juniors to one day compete in other international events of that nature; just as it is the FA's for football, or the ECB's for cricket.
I'm astonished. I honestly thought that you believed that the raison d'être of the ECF was to run or at least to direct anything and everything to do with English chess.

I cite just two matters about which I have disagreed with you: the current requirement that FIDE Arbiters' Seminars in England be organised by the ECF, rather than by individuals or by independent organisers as previously, and your recent proposals regarding the Counties Championships. (For the avoidance of doubt, I am not seeking to reopen the debate about either of those issues.)

Moreover, if you really do not believe that the ECF should organise and run the British Championships, I look forward to your bringing forward a proposal to delete the relevant provision of the Memorandum and Articles.

Your energetic record in office as Director of Home Chess seems to me to run completely counter to the mimimalist philosophy which you have now espoused.

Mike Truran
Posts: 2392
Joined: Wed Apr 11, 2007 3:44 pm
Contact:

Re: ECF Finance meeting 2018

Post by Mike Truran » Wed May 02, 2018 11:02 am

i think Alex's colleagues on the Board would share your astonishment. it's certainly an objective, but is certainly not the raison d'etre.

Sorry - don't know how to do a circumflex.

David Sedgwick
Posts: 4157
Joined: Mon Apr 09, 2007 5:56 pm
Location: Croydon

Re: ECF Finance meeting 2018

Post by David Sedgwick » Wed May 02, 2018 11:10 am

Mike Truran wrote:
Wed May 02, 2018 11:02 am
Sorry - don't know how to do a circumflex.
You should have done what I did, which was to copy and paste "raison d'être" from Alex's post. :lol:

Mike Truran
Posts: 2392
Joined: Wed Apr 11, 2007 3:44 pm
Contact:

Re: ECF Finance meeting 2018

Post by Mike Truran » Wed May 02, 2018 11:12 am

Tried that, but my tablet wouldn't let me. Bloody technology.

User avatar
IM Jack Rudd
Posts: 4142
Joined: Tue Apr 17, 2007 1:13 am
Location: Bideford

Re: ECF Finance meeting 2018

Post by IM Jack Rudd » Wed May 02, 2018 12:04 pm

ê is ALT-0234, for those who are interested. Which is probably a smaller number of chess players than those who are interested in ALT-0189.

Alex Holowczak
Posts: 9085
Joined: Sat May 30, 2009 5:18 pm
Location: Oldbury, Worcestershire
Contact:

Re: ECF Finance meeting 2018

Post by Alex Holowczak » Wed May 02, 2018 2:02 pm

Mike Truran wrote:
Wed May 02, 2018 11:02 am
i think Alex's colleagues on the Board would share your astonishment. it's certainly an objective, but is certainly not the raison d'etre.
Yes, the ECF has a number of objectives. If I had to rank a list of ECF objectives, I'd probably put successful England teams at number 1.

If we had 100,000 graded chess players in England rather than 10,000, we'd probably have stronger England teams automatically. Increasing participation would be an objective in its own right, but it would automatically feed in to having better England teams given the law of averages; if you have 10 times as many players, you're likely to generate stronger players automatically. The things the ECF might do to increase participation include the County Championship, the British Championship, running a grading system, and so on.

I suppose using my logic, you might argue that I've got it the wrong way around, and the England teams are a measure of the success of the other objectives, rather than the England team's success being an objective in its own right.

User avatar
Michael Farthing
Posts: 1968
Joined: Fri Apr 04, 2014 1:28 pm
Location: Morecambe, Europe

Re: ECF Finance meeting 2018

Post by Michael Farthing » Wed May 02, 2018 2:48 pm

IM Jack Rudd wrote:
Wed May 02, 2018 12:04 pm
ê is ALT-0234, for those who are interested. Which is probably a smaller number of chess players than those who are interested in ALT-0189.
I think that's a ½ truth.
Last edited by Michael Farthing on Wed May 02, 2018 2:55 pm, edited 2 times in total.

Hok Yin Stephen Chiu
Posts: 117
Joined: Sun Dec 31, 2017 7:52 pm

Re: ECF Finance meeting 2018

Post by Hok Yin Stephen Chiu » Wed May 02, 2018 2:51 pm

Alex Holowczak wrote:
Wed May 02, 2018 2:02 pm
Mike Truran wrote:
Wed May 02, 2018 11:02 am
i think Alex's colleagues on the Board would share your astonishment. it's certainly an objective, but is certainly not the raison d'etre.
Yes, the ECF has a number of objectives. If I had to rank a list of ECF objectives, I'd probably put successful England teams at number 1.

If we had 100,000 graded chess players in England rather than 10,000, we'd probably have stronger England teams automatically. Increasing participation would be an objective in its own right, but it would automatically feed in to having better England teams given the law of averages; if you have 10 times as many players, you're likely to generate stronger players automatically. The things the ECF might do to increase participation include the County Championship, the British Championship, running a grading system, and so on.

I suppose using my logic, you might argue that I've got it the wrong way around, and the England teams are a measure of the success of the other objectives, rather than the England team's success being an objective in its own right.
I don't wish to get too hung up on semantics and management jargon, but I would like to make a few contributions.

I think there can be ambiguity in the way we treat objectives and indicators.

If we look at objectives, I would argue the ECF only has one objective, which is to facilitate more chess being played by more people in the country.

The way we judge this objective COULD be (not exclusively), (1) assessing how many more graded games are played compared to previous years (both across the country and in different regions) [does these statistics exist in a readable format?], (2) monitoring how many more games, players, and teams are playing in Leagues across the country annually, (3) how many more Congresses are in existence (as well as the number of participants on from each year). These are all useful indicators, but by no means conclusively on the state of English chess.

Naturally, one of these indicators is the performance of the international English teams. BUT, it is essentially a high level indicator (something to consider after all the other things mentioned earlier) - I don't believe is a helpful indicator of the health of English chess at the grassroots.

The reason I would not make chasing this particular indicator into an objective, is because a multitude of factors affect it; so, cause-and-effect factors are hard to isolate.

For example, the WarwickUni has remained Divison 1 Champions of the local League for at least the last 5-6 years, and if winning the League was our primary objective that would mask the real health of the Society, when in fact, the size of the membership has grown from ~50 to 130+ in a little over 3 years.
Delegate for Coventry & District, and Leamington & District
Vice Chair @ Coventry and District Chess League | former-President @ Warwick University Chess
Celebrating 100 Years of the Coventry & District Chess League 1919-2019

NickFaulks
Posts: 6151
Joined: Sat Jan 02, 2010 1:28 pm

Re: ECF Finance meeting 2018

Post by NickFaulks » Wed May 02, 2018 3:09 pm

Hok Yin Stephen Chiu wrote:
Wed May 02, 2018 2:51 pm
If we look at objectives, I would argue the ECF only has one objective, which is to facilitate more chess being played by more people in the country.
Just more chess or also better chess?
If you want a picture of the future, imagine a boot stamping on a human face — forever.

Roger de Coverly
Posts: 19267
Joined: Tue Apr 15, 2008 2:51 pm

Re: ECF Finance meeting 2018

Post by Roger de Coverly » Wed May 02, 2018 3:27 pm

Hok Yin Stephen Chiu wrote:
Wed May 02, 2018 2:51 pm

The way we judge this objective COULD be (not exclusively), (1) assessing how many more graded games are played compared to previous years (both across the country and in different regions) [does these statistics exist in a readable format?], (2) monitoring how many more games, players, and teams are playing in Leagues across the country annually, (3) how many more Congresses are in existence (as well as the number of participants on from each year). These are all useful indicators, but by no means conclusively on the state of English chess.
Most of this is available from grading data, but it's variable as to the extent it's published. The indicators are that it's pretty much flat overall but if you monitor the allocation of new grading codes, it's around a 15% turnover. If you monitor those ceasing to be 17 year old juniors, the numbers are low. University chess isn't solely reliant on UK school chess for new players, given the international nature of student intake.

The published grading list is downloadable.

Statistics at Richard Hadrell's old site.
http://www.sccu-chess.com/archive/1516/grad.htm
http://www.sccu-chess.com/archive/1011/grad.htm
http://www.sccu-chess.com/archive/0203/grad.htm

If you read old Congress reports from the 1970s and 1980s the numbers participating were much higher than today.

Hok Yin Stephen Chiu
Posts: 117
Joined: Sun Dec 31, 2017 7:52 pm

Re: ECF Finance meeting 2018

Post by Hok Yin Stephen Chiu » Wed May 02, 2018 3:48 pm

NickFaulks wrote:
Wed May 02, 2018 3:09 pm
Hok Yin Stephen Chiu wrote:
Wed May 02, 2018 2:51 pm
If we look at objectives, I would argue the ECF only has one objective, which is to facilitate more chess being played by more people in the country.
Just more chess or also better chess?
More - because as a trend, over time people get better the more they play
Roger de Coverly wrote:
Wed May 02, 2018 3:27 pm
Hok Yin Stephen Chiu wrote:
Wed May 02, 2018 2:51 pm

The way we judge this objective COULD be (not exclusively), (1) assessing how many more graded games are played compared to previous years (both across the country and in different regions) [does these statistics exist in a readable format?], (2) monitoring how many more games, players, and teams are playing in Leagues across the country annually, (3) how many more Congresses are in existence (as well as the number of participants on from each year). These are all useful indicators, but by no means conclusively on the state of English chess.
Most of this is available from grading data, but it's variable as to the extent it's published. The indicators are that it's pretty much flat overall but if you monitor the allocation of new grading codes, it's around a 15% turnover. If you monitor those ceasing to be 17 year old juniors, the numbers are low. University chess isn't solely reliant on UK school chess for new players, given the international nature of student intake.

The published grading list is downloadable.

Statistics at Richard Hadrell's old site.
http://www.sccu-chess.com/archive/1516/grad.htm
http://www.sccu-chess.com/archive/1011/grad.htm
http://www.sccu-chess.com/archive/0203/grad.htm

If you read old Congress reports from the 1970s and 1980s the numbers participating were much higher than today.
Thanks Roger. This link in particular is particularly helpful, (http://www.sccu-chess.com/archive/1516/grad.htm); further breakdowns for Regions/Counties/Leagues for identifying which areas are doing well/plateauing/declining, as well as comparisons with membership trends, would be even more helpful for identifying local measures, and where funding should go. (Whilst these figures are quite helpful, perhaps all these figures in graphs and piecharts ready for the next AGM would be even more helpful! a picture tells a thousand words - but I might be asking for too much at this rate)
Delegate for Coventry & District, and Leamington & District
Vice Chair @ Coventry and District Chess League | former-President @ Warwick University Chess
Celebrating 100 Years of the Coventry & District Chess League 1919-2019

Roger de Coverly
Posts: 19267
Joined: Tue Apr 15, 2008 2:51 pm

Re: ECF Finance meeting 2018

Post by Roger de Coverly » Wed May 02, 2018 4:02 pm

Hok Yin Stephen Chiu wrote:
Wed May 02, 2018 3:48 pm
(Whilst these figures are quite helpful, perhaps all these figures in graphs and piecharts ready for the next AGM would be even more helpful! a picture tells a thousand words - but I might be asking for too much at this rate)
The Director of Membership usually produces various data as part of his AGM report. As he's also in charge of grading at director level, he should have necessary data to hand. But what is produced can depend on what is trying to be proved.

The picture now, as it has been since the last major growth at the time of the 1993 Short v Kasparov match is one of just ticking over, but with the core players getting a year older every year. You can measure when people first started playing (from 1986 onwards) by their grading code which is allocated sequentially.

Post Reply