Meeting Professionals International has released a new edition of Meetings and Conventions: A Planning Guide, a 533-page textbook intended to be a resource for experienced meeting professionals, as well as a learning tool for beginning professionals and students.

The new edition includes an interactive CD-ROM of checklists and templates that can be designed to suit the specific meeting, convention, or event being planned. Seventeen chapters cover such topics as meeting objectives, budgets, program development, negotiations, contracts, evaluations, risk management, marketing, sponsorships, and human resources, and each chapter finishes with a self-administered test. New to the 2003 book is "A Conference Journal," which gives a real-world example of how one one meeting professional uses that chapter's content as she plans her conference/tradeshow.

The original book was an outcome of a project between MPI and the Government of Canada Human Resources Department. The textbook is available for purchase online through the MPI Bookstore. The regular price is $89.95, but the cost for MPI members is $59.95.

In other news, MPI will increase its annual dues from $300 to $325 on July 1. In a letter to members, M. Theresa Breining, CMP, CMM, MPI chairwoman of the board, said the increase coincides with a chapter rebate increase aimed at providing "greater financial assistance for high-quality education" at the local chapter level. That rebate was announced in January and raises the per-member chapter rebate from $52 to $58.50. "In short, we are challenged to service your needs and to be the best association that we can be within our current financial resources," Breining wrote in a dues Q and A.