Institute of Consumer Sciences incorporating Home Economics

Nutrition & Food Science

ISSN: 0034-6659

Article publication date: 1 August 2000



(2000), "Institute of Consumer Sciences incorporating Home Economics", Nutrition & Food Science, Vol. 30 No. 4.



Emerald Group Publishing Limited

Copyright © 2000, MCB UP Limited

Institute of Consumer Sciences incorporating Home Economics

Institute of Consumer Sciences incorporating Home Economics

Formation of new Institute for Consumer Sciences

Finally, the Institute of Consumer Sciences incorporating Home Economics (ICSc) is a reality and now has been both registered as a charity and listed as a limited company at Companies House.

This milestone precedes the launch on 1 June of the new Institute, which is made up of three bodies:

  1. 1.

    the Institute of Homes Economics (IHEc);

  2. 2.

    the UK Home Economics Federation; and

  3. 3.

    the Standing Conference in Consumer Studies.

It is the culmination of years of planning to harness the strengths of each organisation and, when the moment came, the vote to merge was overwhelmingly in favour.

Members of all three organisations are being offered the opportunity to transfer to the ICSc. Interestingly, many individual members of IHEc work for organisations which are members of one of the other two bodies, so there is no shortage of understanding of the needs of the new membership.

The branch structure of the IHEc, which had more individual than corporate membership, will form the basis of the branches for the new body. This network is an essential element as it is the energy of the individuals in the branches that will contribute so much to the future of the new body.

A new dimension will come with the corporate forum, which allows professional bodies, commercial organisations and educational departments associated with consumer issues and home economics, to be represented by an individual sitting on this forum. Like the branches, it will elect representatives to the governing council. The election procedure is under way and the governing body will be in place shortly.

In the meantime, members of an expanded working party consisting of four representatives from each of the three organisations are acting as interim trustees/directors until 31 May.

One person who has nursed the project from the beginning is the chairman of the Unification Working Group, Professor Heulwen Hall. She commented:

The ICSc will create a stronger and more influential voice at a time when society can benefit so much from the knowledge and experience of those working in all aspects of what was traditionally known as home economics. There was great debate about our name and we know that some people were unhappy to see "Home Economics" dropped from the main part of our title. We finally concluded, though, that "Consumer Sciences" would serve us better as we look to the future. Furthermore, we believe that "Consumer Sciences" reflects more closely the position of the subject and the profession in today's changing world. Among our membership are people working in education, industry, services, retailing and in jobs tangential to the mainstream, for which their training and experience in consumer sciences make them eminently suitable. We hope that our periodical will continue to provide stimulating reading for all our members under its new title "Consumer Sciences Today". It is an exciting time and we know that the unification process has stimulated many lapsed members of all bodies to re-consider and decide to become part of a new beginning.

The three bodies are winding down in readiness for the official launch of the ICSc in June. The secretariat of the ICSc is based in London, and anyone wishing to receive details of membership should contact: 21 Portland Place, London W1N 3AF. Tel/Fax: 020 7436 5677; e-mail:

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