Proposal for new statutes for the IEHA (April 2000)
Article 1: Name
The International Economic History Association is the name given to a corporately organized association enjoying the rights of civil responsibility in accordance with the provisions of article no 60 and following in the Swiss Civil Code.
Article 2: Aims
The Aims of the Association are:
a) to maintain and develop personal contacts between scholars of all countries interested in economic history in its broadest sense;
b) to periodically organize academic meetings, and in particular international congresses of economic history;
c) to encourage all forms of research and publications relevant to the development and diffusion of economic history.
Article 3: Seat
The seat of the Association is in Geneva.
Article 4: Membership
Membership of the Association is open to scientific organizations devoted to economic history in either general terms or in one of its major specifications. Admission to membership of the Association is decided by the General Assembly on the recommendation of the Executive Committee. Application should be made to the Executive Committee, through the Secretary General, and should include a copy of the constitution of the organization, a list of its officers, and members of its directing Committee, with confirmation of the total numbers of registered members.
Article 5: Revenues
a) The level of annual subscriptions payable by member organizations shall be decided by the General Assembly on the recommendation of the Executive Committee. Any member organization which has failed to pay the annual subscription for three consecutive years will forfeit its membership if, upon the recommendation of the Executive Committee, the General Assembly so decides.
b) Other sources of revenue such as subsidies and income from sponsoring may be raised by the Treasurer or any other member of the Executive Committee.
Article 6: Officers
The offices of the Association are:
b) Vice President
d) Secretary General
To sign a contract or to legally obligate the organization, the President and the Treasurer or the President and the Secretary General must sign on behalf of the organization. The signatories to such documents may be bound by the directions of the General Assembly or the Executive Committee. In the absence of applicable direction from these bodies, the officers are required to act in the prudent interests of the Association.
Article 7: The President
The President is the chief executive officer of the Association.
a) The President presides at all meetings of the General Assembly and of the Executive Committee. The President may vote at meetings of the General Assembly and of the Executive Committee only to break a tie vote.
b) The President is an advisor to the Organizing Committee of the World Congress.
c) The President shall serve a four-year term.
d) In these cases that the Vice President does not assume the office of President, the General Assembly will elect another President
Article 8: The Vice President
The Vice President may perform the role of President in the latter's undisputed absence or incapacity.
a) The Vice President is a voting member of the Executive Committee of the Association.
b) The Vice President serves as the Chair of the Organizing Committee for the World Congress.
c) The Vice President shall serve a four-year term after completion of which he or she normally assumes the office of President.
d) Candidates for Vice President may be nominated or self-nominated to the Executive Committee by any sitting member of the Executive Committee or by any member organization. Candidates may not be nominated by the current President. The Executive Committee will endorse one or more of the nominees for election by the General Assembly.
Article 9: The Treasurer
The Treasurer is the chief financial officer of the Association. The Treasurer has signature authority over the deposits and accounts owned by the Association including those of the Organizing Committee for the World Congress. The Treasurer makes annual financial reports to the Executive Committee and makes such reports to the General Assembly as directed by the Executive Committee.
a) The Treasurer is a voting member of the Executive Committee of the Association.
b) The Treasurer is a member ex officio of the Organizing Committee for the World Congress and an advisor to the financial officer of the Organizing Committee.
c) The Treasurer shall serve a four-year term that is renewable once.
d) Candidates for the office of Treasurer shall be nominated by a search committee appointed by the Executive Committee and chaired by the President. Additional candidates may be nominated by any member of the Executive Committee (except the current Treasurer) or by any member organization. The Executive Committee will endorse one or more nominees for election by the General Assembly.
Article 10: Secretary General
The Secretary General is the administrative officer and secretary of the organization.
a) The Secretary General records the minutes and decisions of the General Assembly and of the Executive Committee and is a voting member of the latter body.
b) The Secretary General maintains the archives of the Association. He or she is responsible for making public announcements on behalf of the organization. He or she is responsible for communication with the appropriate officials of the member organizations of the Association.
c) The Secretary General shall serve a four-year term that is renewable once.
d) Candidates for the office of Secretary General shall be nominated by a search committee appointed by the Executive Committee and chaired by the President. Additional candidates may be nominated by any member of the Executive Committee (except the current Secretary General) or by any member organization. The Executive Committee will endorse one or more of the nominees for election by the General Assembly.
Article 11: Organization
The organizational leadership of the Association is provided through:
a) the General Assembly
b) the Executive Committee
Article 12: The General Assembly
a) The General Assembly consists of one representative from each member organization of the Association, and an alternate. The General Assembly will meet at least once on the occasion of each World Congress, organized by the Association. No person can be a representative for more than one member organization. Members of the Executive Committee are not automatically representatives of their member organization;
b) The convening of the General Assembly shall be announced in writing. The President of the Association or, in his absence, the Vice President shall preside over meetings of the General Assembly.
c) The General Assembly is the supreme authority of the Association. It has within its power to determine all matters which are not reserved to the Executive Committee. In particular it is responsible for:
* approving reports from the Executive Committee and the accounts of the Association
* conducting the election of the President, the Vice President, the Secretary General, the Treasurer and the other members of the Executive Committee
* authorizing all changes in the Statutes of the Association;
* taking decisions for the dissolution and liquidation of the Association.
d) Decisions of the General Assembly that is organised at the World Congress are valid whatever number of member organizations are present, except in the case discussed in article 16. At other meetings of the General Assembly a quorum of one half of the member organizations is required.
e) Decisions of the General Assembly are taken by the majority of votes of member organizations present, except in the cases discussed in article 16. Each member organization has a single vote. In the case of a tie the President may cast a vote.
Article 13: The Executive Committee
a) The Executive Committee consists of the Officers of the Association plus 12 to 15 sitting members, elected by the General Assembly for a four-year term. These elections take place at each quadrennial World Congress. The sitting members of the ExecutiveCommittee are eligible for re-election once. Exceptions will be made for sitting members of the Executive Committee who are elected officer. Meetings of the Executive Committee may be called by the President and the Secretary General.
b) The slate of endorsed nominees for the seats on the Executive Committee presented to the General Assembly shall include those sitting members eligible for reelection who wish to stand for a second term. In addition, each member organization may recommend one individual for nomination to any open seat. The Executive Committee shall endorse one or more candidates for each seat. When making its recommendations, the Executive Committee will take into account the distinction of the nominees and will attempt to ensure that the Executive Committee will reflect the diversity of scholars of all countries interested in economic history in its broadest sense.
c) The slate of nominees prepared by the Executive Committee in the year before the World Congress, should be circulated to all member organizations and publicized on the web. Individuals originally recommended to the Executive Committee but not endorsed by the Executive Committee can be reinstated to the slate by any member organization. This can be accomplished by writing to the General Secretary at least three months in advance of the General Assembly meeting. One such re-submission would be allowed per member organization. These re-submissions should be accompanied by evidence that the individual so nominated is willing and able to serve.
d) At meetings of the Executive Committee one half of the members are necessary to constitute a quorum. The Executive Committee sets the scientific program of each World Congress. The Executive Committee is responsible for executing the decisions of the General Assembly and for ensuring the realization of the aims of the Association. It proposes changes in the membership of the Association and it submits nominations for elections of Committee members to the General Assembly. It enjoys unrestricted administrative powers. It convenes ordinary and extraordinary meetings of the General Assembly and decides the agenda for these meetings. It submits a detailed report on its activities to the General Assembly.
e) The Executive Committee is empowered to represent the Association in its dealings with third parties.
f) The General Assembly on the recommendation of the Executive Committee may confer the title of Honorary President upon a retiring President of the Association. The immediate past President will be a non-voting member of the Executive Committee for one term.
Article 14: Agreement with the Organizing Committee for the World Congress
The overall responsibility for each World Congress rests with the Executive Committee. The Executive Committee will sign a letter of understanding with the Organizing Committee and/or the person or institution in charge of the organization of the World Congress. In this letter the responsibilities and obligations of both parties are regulated. This will include the obligation to present the accounts of the World Congress to the Executive Committee within a year after the World Congress is organized.
Article 15: Amendment of the Statutes
Every change of the Statutes must be approved by a two-thirds majority vote of members of the Association present at the meeting of the General Assembly. Every proposal for a change of Statutes must appear as an item on the agenda of a meeting of the General Assembly. The General Assembly shall only vote on a written text, which shall be sent to member organizations at least two months in advance of the meeting. The Secretary General passes on to the member organizations all written proposals for changes in the statutes received not later than three months before the meeting of the General Assembly.
Article 16: Dissolution and Liquidation
The dissolution and liquidation of the Association can only be approved at a meeting of the General Assembly where two-thirds of the members are present. A decision to dissolve the Association must be approved by a majority of two-thirds of the member organizations present. If less than two-thirds of the members are present at this meeting of the General Assembly, within three months a second vote by mail will be issued, requiring an ordinary majority. If the Association is dissolved the General Assembly shall decide on the disposal of the assets of the Association and shall designate the person authorized to conduct the liquidation of the Association.
The General Assembly acts as arbitrator in the case of any dispute between the Association and any of its member organizations.
The authorized text of the Statutes of the Association is the text of the English and French versions. If there is conflict in interpretation, then the English version of the statutes will take precedence.