IEA Constitution


Revised 7/12/2018

1. Name
The Association shall be called the International Epidemiological Association (hereinafter referred to as “the Association”)

2. Mission, aims and objectives
2.1. The Association’s mission is to promote the highest quality epidemiological practice and its use to solve public health and related problems throughout the world. All Association activities and decisions will be undertaken according to the principles of universality, decentralization, and volunteerism.
2.2. The aims of the Association are to:
     2.2.1. Facilitate communication among those engaged in research and teaching of epidemiology throughout the world;
     2.2.2. Support the development and use of epidemiological methods in all appropriate fields of health including but not limited to social, community and preventive medicine and health services administration.
2.3. The strategic objectives of the Association are to promote and encourage the following:
     2.3.1. The use of epidemiology and its application to the solution of health and related problems;
     2.3.2. The development of epidemiological methods and improvement in these methods;
     2.3.3. The communication of epidemiological methods and findings amongst epidemiologists throughout the world as well as amongst others concerned with health;
     2.3.4. Co-operation with both national and international organizations which are concerned with the promotion of health in the application of epidemiological methods in the solution of problems;
     2.3.5. The dissemination of epidemiological findings nationally and internationally;
     2.3.6. The recruitment, education and training of epidemiologists.
2.4. These aims and objectives are achieved by holding scientific meetings, seminars and training courses, by publication of journals and other print and online publications, by promoting networking and exchange among members, and by other activities consistent with these aims.

3. Membership
3.1. Membership shall be open to those who subscribe to the objectives of the Association; members shall be admitted without regard to race, religion, sex, political affiliation, or place of origin.
3.2. Membership categories shall be as follows:
     3.2.1. Ordinary Members, who shall be individuals engaged in research, teaching or practice in epidemiology;
     3.2.2. Joint Members, who shall be individuals who would be eligible for Ordinary Membership and who are already members of an allied organization designated within the Handbook;
     3.2.3. Senior Members, who shall be current or new members who have retired from full-time employment and are 60 years of age or older;
     3.2.4. Early Career Epidemiologists (ECEs), who shall be individuals currently enrolled in a graduate or postgraduate course of study in a subject relevant to epidemiology, or who have worked in the field of epidemiology for not more than ten years;
     3.2.5. Honorary Members, who shall be those persons selected in recognition of their contribution to the science, or the cause, of epidemiology, or to the Association, and shall be limited to no more than two per cent of the total membership.
3.3. Procedures for admission to membership, privileges of membership, subscriptions and other matters associated with membership shall be specified in the Bylaws.
3.4. All members in categories that pay membership dues shall be designated as Voting Members and shall be entitled to take part in elections and other votes of membership, and to make nominations for Council members.
3.5. No member may transfer their membership to anyone else.
3.6. Membership of the Association shall be terminated if:
     3.6.1. The member dies;
     3.6.2. The member notifies the Association of his or her resignation;
     3.6.3. Any subscription moneys owed by the member are more than twelve months overdue;
     3.6.4. The Council resolves by at least a two-thirds majority that it is in the interests of the Association that a membership be terminated.
3.7. Before any action is taken to terminate a membership:
     3.7.1. The member must be advised of the pending action and the reasons for it;
     3.7.2. The member must be given twenty-one days to advise the Council as to why he or she should not be removed, in writing or in person as the Council decides;
     3.7.3. The Council must take the member’s submission into account in making their final decision.

4. Business Meetings
4.1. A General Business Meeting shall be held on the occasion of each World Congress of Epidemiology. The business to be transacted shall include:
     4.1.1. Reports from the Officers, including an audited statement of accounts;
     4.1.2. Communication of the results of elections;
     4.1.3. Items of business that shall have been notified to the Secretary at least four weeks before the date of the meeting;
4.2. A Special Business Meeting may be convened at any time by the Council; and shall be convened by the Council on the requisition of not less than ten per cent of paid-up Voting Members. The requisition must state the purpose for which the meeting is required.
4.3. Notice of a Business Meeting shall be sent to the membership at least 120 days before the scheduled date.
4.4. The quorum for any Business Meeting shall consist of twenty-five paid-up Voting Members. Motions shall be passed by a simple majority of all such Members present and voting unless specified otherwise in this Constitution.
4.5. Business Meetings shall be chaired by the President or, if the President is unable or unwilling to take the chair, by the President-elect or, if both the President and President Elect are unable or unwilling to take the chair, by another Council member chosen by the Voting Members.
4.6. A postal or electronic ballot may be held on the decision of Council or of a simple majority of those paid-up Voting Members present and voting at a Business Meeting; or any ten per cent of paid-up Voting Members.
4.7. Resolutions that are the subject of such ballots shall be carried if a simple majority of votes legally cast are in favour, except where this Constitution requires a different majority.
4.8. The results of such a ballot shall be binding on the Association only if fifty per cent or more paid-up Voting Members cast their vote.
4.9. The ballot shall be counted by an Officer of the Association or any other individual(s) appointed by the Council to fulfill this role; the results shall be communicated to members within thirty days after the voting period expires; and all deadlines shall be clearly communicated to members.

5. Council
5.1. The Officers of the Association shall be the President, President-elect, Past President, Secretary and Treasurer.
5.2. The Council shall be the governing body of the Association and shall comprise the Officers and no less than eight nor more than twelve other paid-up Members, which shall include at least one from each of the Association’s regions (the “Regional Councilors”), and an Early Career Epidemiologist.
5.3. The Editor(s)-in-Chief of the Association’s journal(s) shall attend Council meetings at the invitation of Council on an ex officio, non-voting basis.
5.4. Council shall meet twice (incoming and outgoing) at the Association’s congress and at other times as they may decide, but not less than three times in total in each term of office.
5.5. More than half the voting Council members shall form a quorum and decisions shall be made by a simple majority of those present unless specified elsewhere in this Constitution.
5.6. Council may hold additional meetings by telephone, email or other method by which each may communicate with the others. The rules on quorum and decisions as in 5.5 shall apply.
5.7. Council shall establish an Executive Committee comprising at least the Officers. The role and responsibilities of the Executive Committee shall be set out in the Bylaws.
5.8. Council may also establish other committees, reporting to Council, whose roles and responsibilities shall be set out in the Bylaws.
5.9. Council may delegate authority to committees, suppliers or other organizations or individuals, but must prescribe the details of such delegation in writing. Such delegation authority may be revoked by Council at any time. Council may not delegate its ultimate responsibility for the good management of the Association.
5.10. Casual vacancies of Office or Council membership may be filled by paid-up Voting Members as decided by Council. Such appointments shall only be valid until the next elections.
5.11. Council members may be reimbursed for expenses properly incurred in the performance of their duties, and shall be entitled to the normal benefits of membership afforded to other members, but shall not gain any personal financial benefit from their office.
5.12. Council members must declare any conflicts of interest or conflicts of loyalty and must absent themselves from any discussion or vote on any topic on which they are conflicted.

6. Election of Council members
6.1. Council members shall be elected from the paid-up Voting Members by postal or electronic ballot prior to a General Business Meeting.
6.2. Council members’ term of office shall extend from the end of one World Congress of Epidemiology until the end of the next.
6.3. The President shall not be eligible for re-election to Council.
6.4. No Council member shall serve more than three terms unless elected as an Officer, in which case they may serve a total of not more than six terms, unless elected as President-elect.
6.5. The President-elect shall serve one term after which he or she shall take on the office of President without further election, and after which he or she shall take on the office of immediate Past President without further election.
6.6. The overall responsibility for managing elections shall reside with the immediate Past President, President and President-elect.
6.7. The Council shall convene a Nominating Committee consisting of the immediate Past President, one former member of Council, one paid-up member who has never been a Council member, and one other member appointed by the President and immediate Past President. The Nominating Committee shall be chaired by the immediate Past President. Should the immediate Past President be unable or unwilling to carry out this duty, the President shall chair the Nominating Committee.
6.8. Nominations for Council membership may be made by the Nominating Committee or by any two paid-up Voting Members, provided that such nominations are delivered to the specified address before the date advised for the closure of the nomination period.
6.9. All nominees must have been paid-up Voting Members of the Association for at least two years before being eligible for nomination, with the exception of any Early Career Epidemiologist, who must be a member, but need not have been a member for two years. All nominees must confirm their agreement to the nomination.
6.10. The Nominating Committee shall use all reasonable endeavors to obtain at least two nominations for each vacancy, and that there is an equitable balance of region, gender and career stage.
6.11. If there is more than one nomination for any vacancy, a postal or electronic ballot shall be conducted and the candidate(s) with the most votes shall be deemed elected, with the provisos that:
     6.11.1. For any election of a Council member representing a particular region, if the candidate with the most votes has received fewer than one third of the total votes cast, then a second ballot shall be held between the two candidates with the highest numbers of votes, and the candidate with the most votes in the second ballot shall be deemed elected;
     6.11.2. For any election of a Council member representing a particular region, only paid-up Voting Members who are currently residing in that region are eligible to vote;
     6.11.3. For any election of an Early Career Epidemiologist Council member, only paid-up Early Career Epidemiologist members may vote;
     6.11.4. If two or more candidates for any elected post receive the same highest number of votes (ie, a draw), a second ballot shall be held among the tied candidates, with the same constituency of members eligible to vote as for the first ballot. In the unlikely event that the second ballot again results in a draw, Council will select one candidate from among those with the tied highest numbers of votes.

7. Resignation and removal of Council members
7.1. A Council member ceases to hold office if he or she:
     7.1.1. retires by notifying the Secretary in writing, provided that at least three Council members remain as required by the Articles of Incorporation;
     7.1.2. is absent without the permission of Council from two successive meetings held and the Council resolves that his or her office be vacated;
     7.1.3. dies;
     7.1.4. in the written opinion, given to the Association, of a registered medical practitioner treating that person, has become physically or mentally incapable of acting as a Council member and may remain so for more than three months;
     7.1.5. is removed by the members of the Association, as detailed in 7.2 below.
7.2. A Council member shall be removed from office if a resolution to remove that Council member is proposed at a Business Meeting of the members properly convened in accordance with clause 4, and the resolution is passed by a two-thirds majority of votes cast at the meeting.
7.3. Before any action is taken to remove a Council member from office:
     7.3.1. The Council member must be given at least twenty-one days’ clear notice of the pending action and the reasons for it;
     7.3.2. The Council member must be given a reasonable opportunity to make representations to the members of the Association;
     7.3.3. The members must take the Council member’s submission into account in making their final decision.

8. Scientific activities
8.1. The World Congress of Epidemiology shall normally be held every three years and not less frequently than every five years.
8.2. The arrangements for the World Congress of Epidemiology shall be as specified in the Bylaws and Handbook.
8.3. Other scientific and educational meetings may be held as decided by Council, including but not limited to regional meetings.
8.4. The Association shall publish such journals, books or other publications as fit within its mission, aims and objectives.
8.5. The Association may establish such prizes, awards and bursaries as Council deems fit, provided they are consistent with the Association’s mission, aims and objectives and its nonprofit status.
8.6. The Association may work in liaison with the World Health Organization or other organizations.
8.7. The Association may carry out any other lawful activities that are consistent with its mission, aims and objectives and with nonprofit law.

9. Bylaws
Bylaws for the conduct of the affairs of the Association shall be made and/or amended by a vote of at least two thirds of the Council.

10. Amendments to the Constitution
10.1. Amendments to this Constitution shall be made by a two-thirds majority of votes cast by paid-up Voting Members in a secret ballot at a General or Special Business Meeting or by postal or electronic ballot.
10.2. Notice of any proposal to amend this Constitution at a General or Special Business Meeting must be included in the announcement of the corresponding meeting.
10.3. The quorum for voting on amendments to this Constitution at a General or Special Business Meeting shall be twenty per cent of all paid-up Voting Members of the Association.
10.4. The Council, or a simple majority of all paid-up Voting Members present and voting at a General or Special Business Meeting convened to alter the Constitution, may direct that a postal or electronic ballot be conducted.
10.5. The results of any ballot to amend this Constitution shall be binding on the Association if fifty per cent or more of the paid-up Voting Members cast a vote. If fewer than fifty per cent of eligible members cast a vote, then the result shall not be binding and may be implemented or not at the discretion of the Council.
10.6. Any ballot shall be counted by an Officer of the Association or any other individual(s) appointed by the Council to fulfil this role, and the results communicated to the members, within thirty days after the voting period expires.
10.7. All deadlines shall be clearly communicated to Members by postal or electronic methods as decided by the Executive Committee. 

11. Indemnification
To the fullest extent permitted by law, every person who is or was a Councillor, editor or other office holder of the Association shall be indemnified by the Association against all reasonable expenses incurred by him or her in connection with, or resulting from, any claim, action, suit or proceeding in which he or she may be involved by reason of being or having been a Councillor, editor or other office holder.

12. Legal structure
12.1. The International Epidemiological Association, Incorporated, is a non-profit corporation registered in Maryland. Its Articles of Incorporation authorise this Constitution and associated Bylaws.
12.2. The Association must act at all times in compliance with its Articles of Incorporation and all laws governing 501 (3) (c) nonprofit organizations.
12.3. The Officers and Members of Council shall be the sole Officers and Trustees/Directors of the International Epidemiological Association, Incorporated.