I see on the upcoming meeting schedule that the Joint Mathematics Meetings in 2013 will be in San Diego, and in 2014 will be in Baltimore. What is the MAA thinking? Why would you follow a lovely venue like San Diego, where the weather is always perfect, with Baltimore, which is going to be cold, snowy, and miserable? Why can’t all the meetings be in warm places?!
-Not Looking Forward to Freezing
Many factors affect the location of the JMM. Weather is not in the top ten, actually, although we all look forward togoing to the warm locales. The organizers look for venues large enough (and reasonably priced) to comfortably accommodate approximately 7,000 mathematicians, with enough meeting rooms for all of the participating organizations to hold events, and enough hotels and restaurants to feed everyone. Usually this is most easily done in large cities or places with large convention centers. That’s why sometimes we get to go to moderate climates (San Diego and Phoenix, for example) and sometimes we get to enjoy the winter atmosphere. Remember: Not all northern meetings end up being cold and snowy. Notice that Boston was lovely—and we had all kinds of travel issues getting out of New Orleans.
This question was answered in the October/November issue of MAA FOCUS.