ASSC Bylaws

ARTICLE 1 - NAME AND PURPOSE

  1. The name of the organization shall be the "Association for the Scientific Study of Consciousness".
  2. The purpose of this organization shall be: to encourage research on consciousness in cognitive science, neuroscience, philosophy, and other relevant disciplines in the sciences and humanities, directed toward understanding the nature, function, and underlying mechanisms of consciousness.

ARTICLE 2 - MEMBERSHIP

  1. The Society shall consist of three classes of members: Student Members, Members and Full-Voting Members.
  2. The selection criteria for membership are outlined below:
    • All three categories of membership will be entitled to the members benefits listed on the website http://www.theassc.org/member_benefits.
    • Additional privileges for the respective membership classifications are listed below:
      • Student Member: The applicant is a student working toward a degree in an accredited program. The applicant's research interests and major project matches with the general research areas promoted by the Association for the Scientific Study of Consciousness. Student members are eligible for various ASSC programs and scholarships, including student activities at annual meetings.
      • Member (without voting privileges): The applicant has a degree from an accredited University and an interest in the promotion or pursuit of the scientific study of consciousness as defined by the Association for the Scientific Study of Consciousness.
      • Full-Voting Member: The applicant has a graduate degree in a relevant discipline and at least two articles published in internationally recognized peer reviewed journals or the equivalent in scholarly output particular to the applicant's discipline. These articles should relate to the scientific, clinical, or philosophical study of consciousness. In extreme circumstances, individuals who do not fulfill the above criteria may apply for special consideration. This application must be supported by two voting members, in the form of an email to the chair of the membership committee. Members meeting these criteria will be eligible to serve on the board or any of the ASSC committees. Full-Voting members will also be able vote on official ASSC matters such as Board elections and other issues presented to the membership as they arise.
  3. All Members shall be treated without discrimination on the basis of race, national or ethnic origin, religion, gender, sexual orientation, age, or mental or physical disability. This does not preclude the Society from carrying out activities or programs which have as the goal the amelioration of conditions that may restrict members from full participation in the Society or its activities.
  4. Dues for members and the several classes of affiliates are set by the Board of Directors of the Society and are paid to the Society annually.

ARTICLE 3 - OFFICERS, DUTIES, AND TERMS OF OFFICE

  1. The executive offices of the Society shall consist of a President-elect, President and Past President, six Members-at-Large together they will form the Board of Directors. In addition there will be a number of Officers that will combine with the Board of Directors to form the Executive Committee. Each member of the Executive Committee shall perform the usual duties of the respective position and specific duties provided elsewhere in these Bylaws or as assigned by the Board of Directors.
  2. Candidates for President and Members-at-Large shall be Full-Voting Members of the Society. The President will be nominated by the current Board of Directors and approved by the membership at the annual elections. The President shall then serve a three-year term as President-Elect, President and Past President.
  3. The Members-at-Large shall serve three-year terms, two to be elected every year by majority vote of Full-Voting Members in the annual elections. Members-at-Large may not server for more than two consecutive terms, but may serve for multiple non-consecutive terms.
  4. The Board of Directors shall appoint Officers for the position of an Executive Director, Secretary, Treasurer, and any additional positions deemed necessary for the running of the society. Positions of the Officers will be reviewed by the Board of Directors on a yearly basis. Officers shall serve as ex-officio members of the Executive Committee without voting privileges unless they are also members of the Board of Directors.
  5. In the case of the President's prolonged absence, incapacity, death, or resignation, the President-Elect shall assume the duties of the President. In the case of the resignation, death or prolonged absence of a Member-at-Large or an Officer, the Board of Directors may replace that Member or Officer by appointing another person to serve during the remainder of his or her term.
  6. Respective responsibilities and privileges of the Board of Directors and Officers will be as follows:
    • Board of Directors: The Board of Directors will be ultimately responsible for all major and minor decisions relating to the running and direction of the ASSC. Decisions will be decided as outlined in Section 7 below.
    • Executive Director: The Executive Director’s primary role will be to oversee the day to day running of the society and to assist with communication and continuity between each of the independent facets of the society. The Executive Director will serve in an ex-officio capacity, without voting privileges in respect to each of the committees and the Board of Directors.
    • Treasurer: Will be responsible for recording the financial activities of the society and processing reimbursements for services deemed necessary for the running of the society. Will be responsible for ensuring the financial activities of the society comply with the relevant taxation and legal bodies.
    • Secretary: Will be responsible for the administration of all membership applications and payments and will serve in an ex-officio capacity, and liaise closely with the membership committee.
    • Other: Additional Officers may be appointed to the Executive Committee, in order to assist in any aspect of the day-to-day the running of the society. Such positions will be created and dissolved, as required, by the Board of Directors.
  7. Decisions voted on by the board of directors will be dealt with as follows:
    • Major Decisions: All decisions having to do with the bylaws or financial transactions exceeding an amount of $5000 must be supported by a 2/3 majority.
    • Minor Decisions: All other decisions will be determined by a simple majority. For all minor decisions, not replying to a call for votes by the executive director within 72 hours can be treated as an abstention from the vote. In cases where votes are not received from all board members, a simple majority and a minimum of 4 supporting votes must be received before any decision is ratified.

ARTICLE 4 - COMMITTEES

  1. A number of Committees will be maintained to assist with the running of the society. The formation and desolation of committees will be made at the discretion of the Board of Directors, in order to best accommodate the changing needs of the society.
  2. The President, President-elect, Past President and Members-at-Large shall constitute the voting members of the Board of Directors.
  3. The Board of Directors shall have general supervision of the affairs of the Society, performing the duties and abiding by the limitations specified in these Bylaws. Actions of the Board of Directors affecting Society policy are subject to approval by a majority vote of the members voting at the Society meeting, or by approval by a majority vote of the members voting at the annual meeting, or by special e-mail ballots as decided upon by the Board of Directors. In the case of actions taken at the Society meeting a special e-mail ballot to review such actions may be requested by 5% of the members. A request to review shall be sent to the President within thirty days following the annual meeting. The ballot shall be circulated to the membership.
  4. All Members (including student members) are eligible to serve on the committees.
  5. Every year a call for nominations for positions on the respective committees will be made. From this list of nominees, the new members of each Committee and the Committee chair shall then be selected by the Board of Directors.
  6. Members' terms shall be staggered on a three year cycle, with an equal number of new members being appointed each year. Exceptions to this rule will be made if insufficient numbers of new nominations are received in any year, or current serving members request to stand down.

ARTICLE 5 - ACTIVITIES

  1. An annual or biennial meeting of the Society shall be held for the transaction of business and presentations regarding research on consciousness.
  2. The Society may establish or acquire newsletters, journals, or other publications.
  3. The Board of Directors may provide for the formation and dissolution of Divisions, interest groups, regional chapters and other units within the society.

ARTICLE 6 - RULES OF PROCEDURE

  1. The rules contained in the current edition of Robert's Rules of Order (Newly Revised) shall govern the Society in all cases to which they are applicable and which they are not inconsistent with these Bylaws and any special rules of order the Society might adopt.

ARTICLE 7 - AMENDMENTS

  1. These Bylaws may be amended by a 2/3 majority of all members that choose to participate in the vote. Bylaws amendments may be initiated by the Board of Directors or by petition of 5% of the total membership.
  2. Periodically the Board of Directors shall appoint a special committee to review the then-current Bylaws and the operation and structure of the Society and make recommendations about them to the Board.

ARTICLE 8 - DISSOLUTION

  1. In the event of the dissolution or termination of the Society, all of the assets and title to and possessions of the property of the Society shall pass to the American Association for the Advancement of Science, or if the AAAS no longer exists, to a similar scientific society selected by the Board of Directors.

Last updated: December 2009