Chengdu Worldcon 2023 Redirects Passalong Funds to Support Chicon 8

Chicon 8, the 2022 World Science Fiction Convention, and Chengdu Worldcon 2023, the 2023 World Science Fiction Convention, are delighted to announce that Chengdu has redirected over $57,000 of its Passalong entitlement to support Chicon 8 as Worldcon continues to recover from the Covid-19 pandemic.

Chicon 8 has already received over $113,000 of Passalong from its three predecessors (Dublin in 2019CoNZealand 2020, and Discon III [2021]), as well as $15,000 of CoNZealand Passalong that Discon III redirected to Chicon. In addition, Chicon 8 has received grants of $5,000 each from the previous Worldcons of 2012 (Chicon 7) and 2018 (Worldcon 76).

In total Chicon 8 is therefore being supported by the Worldcon community with over $195,000 of funding (nearly 20% of its total budget of $1.1m).

According to Helen Montgomery, Chair of Chicon 8, “We are enormously grateful for the support we have received from past and future Worldcons, and in particular for this unique gesture by Chengdu Worldcon 2023. As with so many events, Worldcon attendance has been significantly impacted by Covid-19, and this has inevitably made budgeting that much more challenging. While our expected on-site attendance of over 4,000 people shows a strong recovery, it is still some 1,000 less than we would normally expect for a Chicago Worldcon.”

Montgomery continued, “It is only through this exceptional level of community support that we are able to deliver the full Worldcon experience that our members have missed over the last three years. We have over 600 program items featuring over 700 program participants, along with 50 Dealers in our Dealers’ Room and 70 Artists in our Art Show. And we know how much our attendees are looking forward to seeing friends who they have missed over the last three years”.

Speaking on behalf of Chengdu Worldcon 2023, Co-Chair Ben Yalow said “While this may be the first Worldcon in China, Chengdu Worldcon 2023 very much sees itself as part of the Worldcon family. The Covid-19 pandemic has impacted every country around the world, and we are delighted to do our part to ensure that the Worldcon institution recovers and thrives as it approaches its 85th year.”

About the Passalong Program. Under Passalong, Worldcons commit to pass a minimum of 50% of any surplus forward to their three immediate successors, subject to those conventions also joining the program. Given that every Worldcon is a financially separate entity, Passalong plays an important role in reducing the financial risk for each event and enables committees to plan with confidence.

[Based on a press release.]

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12 thoughts on “Chengdu Worldcon 2023 Redirects Passalong Funds to Support Chicon 8

  1. Bill Higgins: Not really. The 1995 Worldcon, Intersection, responded to a request from the 1997 Worldcon, LoneStarCon 2, as reported in File 770 #119:

    LSC2’s financial squeeze caused some fans to appeal to Intersection to pass on its surplus in time to help 1997 con make budget decisions. Martin Easterbrook and company responded by sending $2,000. (Any share that L.A.con III would receive has been released instead to LSC2 and Bucconeer.)

  2. Bill Higgins: On second thought, yes. You meant the chronological order, obviously. In my answer I was focusing on the element of a Worldcon foregoing passalongs it should have got.

  3. Mike Glyer: Yes, in other words, “Has a Worldcon ever been given Passalong funding help from another Worldcon that was yet to be held?”

    (Not sure why a little picture of me is not showing up alongside these comments. I’m just an empty suit in a gray box.)

  4. Bill Higgins: It turns out you have more than one log-in. The other one has a picture associated with it. This one doesn’t. (What is that, a Gravatar?)

  5. Gravatar is what includes our pictures, yes. At least on WordPress sites.

    I suppose Chengdu is in an unusual position, financially, and it’s good to see them sharing the wealth. I’m sure it will benefit Chicon 8.

  6. Mike Glyer: Any credit for the 1997 pass along should go to Vince “fastest spreadsheet in the West” Docherty and his team who went considerably above and beyond what most con treasurers have to do.

    My sole contribution too anything financial was to ask everyone volunteering to help with programme “Are you sure you’re not an International currency speculator? We desperately need one of those”

  7. Having cash in hand before the con begins is exceedingly useful, but the extent of these passalong funds tends to make me believe that the overall budget is being overestimated, and Worldcon memberships should cost less.

  8. @Anne Gray–Budget for break-even, and do it conservatively. Have a successful con, and there’s money to pass along.

    Miscalculate in the other direction, and you have Constellation, the 1983 WorldCon, that filed for bankruptcy. People don’t want a repetition, especially if they lived through it.

  9. If all Worldcons were organized by a single entity, memberships probably would cost less, because the single entity would be able to build up sufficient reserves to be able to weather financial fluctuations and sheer bad luck. But as each Worldcon gets exactly one chance, they have to be extremely conservative or else risk bankruptcy.

  10. Whatever else you want to say about the Chengdu convention I try to think well of the organizers and they seem to be living up to the best traditions of the event.

    Not their fault that the world is going to hell before our eyes.

  11. Good on Cheng Du. I suspect most of us fans who don’t live in China will be attending online due to China’s draconian COVID policies.

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