|IAGP's new bylaws (revised in July, 2016) appear below.|
ARTICLE I - NAME
The name of the organization is the International Association for Group Psychotherapy and Group Processes, IAGP. It is a professional, incorporated, non-profit organization, registered for that purpose under the number CHE-110.173.396, according to Swiss Civil Code Article 60 ff., in the Commercial Register of the Kanton Thurgau, Kreuzlingen, Switzerland.
ARTICLE II - PURPOSE
A. The purpose of the Association is to encourage internationally the development and study of group psychotherapy and group processes as applied to:
Scientific studies, and
The IAGP promotes professional cross fertilization of ideas and practices from different cultures, disciplines and methodologies. The Association realizes its purpose without any financial interest.
B. The purpose as stated in A. will be applied within a framework of the values and conditions of the United Nations’ Charter of Human Rights, applied with the aim of strengthening egalitarian and democratic developments in social welfare and health care internationally, throughout the world.
ARTICLE III - MEMBERSHIP
ARTICLE IV - FELLOWSHIP
ARTICLE V - FEES AND DUES
The Board of Directors determines the dues for Membership and the fees for Organizational Affiliation, and the procedures for membership and affiliation. To comply with the Swiss Civil Code, and in the absence of actual decisions about the specified level of dues and fees, they shall be CHF 200 to ensure that IAGP has sufficient minimum funds.
Members shall only be liable for
the Association’s debts and liabilities to the amount of their
dues and fees for affiliation, respectively. Accordingly, for
debts of the Association, the Association’s assets shall be the
only funds liable.
ARTICLE VI- MAIN LEVELS OF ORGANISATION OF IAGP
Governance of the Association rests in the following parts and levels
1. The General Assembly of Members, GA, is the overriding structure, which has the ultimate responsibility, and the overarching decision-making authority, and directs the organization and its current affairs, elects members of the Board of Directors and the members of its Executive Management Group. The GA also elects the chairperson of the Ethics and Professional Conduct Committee. Ordinary General Assemblies for the overall government of the organization, and for elections of its administration, will be called for in conjunction with the International Congresses arranged by, or sponsored by, IAGP. Such International Congresses of IAGP shall be scheduled at three year intervals if possible. The membership of the GA can also meet, physically or virtually, at specific extra meetings, called for by the Board of Directors, or by 20 % or more of the membership with voting rights, according to what is regulated in Articles VII and VIII. At the triennial GA there shall be one report each from the President, the Treasurer, from one Auditor and the Committees.
2. The Board of Directors, which is continuously responsible for the IAGP work and affairs between GA meetings, has maximum 32 members, including the Executive Management Group, the Chairpersons of Committees and of Sections, according to Articles XI and XII. It will meet physically twice a year, preferably in connection with particular scientific programs chosen. It can, in addition, also work in virtual meetings according to Article IX. Previous Presidents are permanently invited to join the Board meetings as non-voting participants.
3. The Executive Management Group, EMG, a constituent part of the Board, consists of the six leading IAGP officials, as specified in Article VII: the President, the Vice President, the Secretary, the Treasurer, the Senior Executive Member and the Young Professionals’ Executive Member. They have, individually and together, as the EMG, responsibility for performing the ongoing, daily affairs of the organization between Board meetings as specified in Article VII.
4. The Committees with their chairpersons and steering assemblies as specified in Article XI
5. The Sections, with their respective chairpersons and coordinating committees as specified in Article XII.
ARTICLE VII- LEADING POSTS OF RESPONSIBILITY, THEIR ELECTION AND
ELECTION OF BOARD MEMBERS
The IAGP Official Leading Posts are the President, the Vice President, the Secretary, the Treasurer, the Senior Executive Member and the Young Professionals’ Executive Member. They are all full voting members of the Board of Directors and constitute, together, the Executive Management Group of the Board. A quorum for decisions in the EMG consists of not less than three participating members.
A. The President is the
Executive Official of the IAGP and shall, as a rule, chair Board
meetings and meetings in the EMG, unless there is a
meeting or a specific issue that requires an independent
chairperson, such as obvious risks from conflicts of interest,
according to Article X below. The President leads,
directs and promotes the ongoing work of the Association on
behalf of its members, in close cooperation with the rest of the
Executive Management Group. When votes are tied, during
decision-making of the Board or its EMG, the President or
the actual Chairperson has the Casting Vote.
E. The Secretary shall maintain the records of the association and be responsible for the framework of communications and its maintenance, including maintaining the online archives, among them the special archive containing Policies and Procedures Manual – as specified in ARTICLE XIII - and shall perform such other duties as assigned by the Board of Directors and its EMG.
F. The Treasurer shall have custody of IAGP funds and shall maintain full and adequate records of all transactions with records available for inspection as required by EMG members, directors and other inspectors and auditors and also for inspection in accordance with its Non-profit Status under the Swiss Civil Code.
G. Conditions for election and for re-election. The candidates for election to an Official Leading Post and to membership of the Board, shall represent, as much as possible, the diversity of the IAGP membership as-a-whole. It is highly desirable that more than one candidate for each individual post shall be available in general elections of the administration.
H. The Nominations Committee
is, in the first instance, responsible for, gathering a list of
vacancies for the next election, and further for collecting
nominations and selecting appropriate persons, for preparing
candidate lists for general elections of the IAGP administration
and reporting these lists to the Board for further handling (see
more below in Article XI, Committees!)
ARTICLE VIII- MEETINGS & DECISION MAKING
A. Meetings in the Executive Management Group, the Board of Directors, the Committees and the Sections as well as General Assembly meetings and elections, are organized primarily as face-to-face meetings. This is the preferred form of meeting, when possible, being the more established format.
B. A face-to-face meeting may, in addition, have virtual participation from a minority of members with voting privileges, provided sufficient, professionally valid, technical arrangements can be made. Proxy voting by absent members with full voting rights may also be used.
C. Decisions can also be made during virtual meetings, using dependable electronic and computer-aided technologies. Virtually aided decisions can, when carefully selected and prepared, be a good enough alternative to postponing pending decisions for too long
D. The aforementioned decision alternatives may be used in one way or another, provided that all applicable following measures are fulfilled:
E. Decisions according to this Article presupposes that a necessary quorum for valid decision making is maintained – quorum in the meaning of amount of participating voters compared to the total amount of members with voting rights:
F. Decisions according to this Article are valid provided that written necessary information, needed for proper conduct of a decision, is sent out through the appropriate channels:
G. Each individual member has the right to vote in IAGP decisions and assemblies, provided that they have fully paid their dues. The designated representative of an affiliated organization also has voting rights provided that the organizational membership fees have been fully paid. It is the responsibility of the EMG to maintain the prescription of these voting rights.
ARTICLE IX - DUTY OF INFORMATION
Active democratic participation in the organization pre-supposes free access to relevant information about facts and developments within, and between, different parts and holders of different posts of the IAGP. In this way every member has a principal Duty of Information, applied throughout the organization concerning matters of general importance to the membership as a whole.
Confidentiality shall only be applied in the following circumstances:
A. Facts and information about on-going, sensitive negotiations or planning work. After due conclusion the duty to inform others in the organization returns again. This point concerns economic, scientific, ethical and a variety of other material to be specified, in the last instance, by the Board of Directors and/or the General Assembly.
B. Facts and information about personal circumstances which have to be confidential in order to protect individual integrity. This applies, among other similar examples, to interviews performed by the Nominating Committee prior to making decisions for official lists of candidates.
C. Confidentiality will also cover sensitive information regarding cases of complaints about maltreatment and malpractice brought to the knowledge of the Ethics Committee and the Board, during processing the material, before official recommendations for action are made.
Facts and information obtained in
confidence in experiential endeavours – e.g. small and large
groups, workshops - during training, conferences and seminars
arranged by, or sponsored by, the IAGP in accordance with the
Policies and Procedures Manual.
ARTICLE X - RISK OF CONFLICT OF INTEREST DURING DECISION-MAKING
Notwithstanding demands in the Swiss Civil Code Article 68 section 1, that states that “Each member is by law excluded from voting on any resolution concerning a transaction or dispute between him or her, his or her spouse or lineal relative on the one hand and the association on the other” the following shall also be taken into account:
If a member of a decision making assembly of the IAGP can be expected to have a greater than negligible personal gain from a decision about a specific issue – or if a close relative or beloved one, or close friend, can gain similarly – then that member shall not take any active participation in negotiations or voting about that issue. The same restriction shall be applied to anybody chairing the meeting when working with such an issue or writing the official protocol for it.
The possibility of a conflict of interest shall be considered in all IAGP decision making throughout, if necessary also leading to legal consultation before taking part in debates and decision-making. It is everybody’s personal responsibility to keep this in mind, especially for those chairing decision meetings.
The restriction does not concern election campaigning for one’s own candidacy for posts in the organization’s administration, nor does it concern voting by ballot for one’s own candidacy in its elections.
ARTICLE XI - COMMITTEES
Appointments are made by the Board of Directors after proposals from the President and the Executive Management Group, unless otherwise specified. All Chairpersons, except those in an Ad-hoc Committee, are members of the Board of Directors with full voting rights, one vote for each committee or section, in case co-chairperson leadership is applied.
occur between meetings of the Board, they will be filled, upon
suggestions from the President, by appointment by the EMG,
informing the Board within four weeks. If vacancies among the
Chairpersons of the Nominating Committee, the Government and
Bylaws Committee or the Ethics and Professional Conducts
Committee occur between GA meetings, they will be filled for the
rest of the mandate period upon suggestions from the EMG, by
appointment from the Board, reported to the GA membership within
ARTICLE XII - SECTIONS
A. The Board may, at its discretion establish temporary or continuing Sections based on specialized interest. Action to create a Section may be initiated by an application to the Board from twenty-five (25) paid-up members who subscribe to the following principles and conditions:
B. The present – in 2016 – sections are:
C. At present – in 2016 – IAGP also has several Task Forces, as listed below. The Chair of each Task Force may be a Board member, but is not required to be.
D. These lists will be kept updated by the EMG in dialogue with the Board of Directors.
ARTICLE XIII - APPLICATION DIRECTIVES
In order to support and carry into real effect the IAGP Constitution and Bylaws, the Board of Directors has the responsibility to decide any accompanying directives and their application, when, and if, needed. These shall be kept together in a separate archive, entitled Policies and Procedures Manual.
ARTICLE XIV - AMENDMENTS
The Constitution and bylaws may be amended at any general assembly meeting, and decision according to Article VIII, provided that proper notice of the meeting has been sent out, and that the proposed amendments have been circulated to the membership more than four weeks before the decision, and that other requirements in Article VIII have been fulfilled.
ARTICLE XIII - LIQUIDATION
In the case of liquidation of the IAGP, the remaining assets will be transferred to a tax- exempt charitable organization with similar goals.
The text of the Proposals for Revised IAGP Bylaws 2016 has the following history:
Revision of the Current IAGP Bylaws, dated 2006, has been made, on given mandate by the IAGP General Assembly, between November 2015 and June 2016 by the Commission for Bylaws Remission , having had Galabina Tarashoeva and Göran Ahlin as Co-chairs, Einar Gudmundsson, Frances Bonds White and Pablo Castanho as members.
The Revision has been done in close co-operation with the Governance and Bylaws Committee, Chairperson Marianne Wiktorin, and with the Executive Committee, President Kate Bradshaw Tauvon and Teresa von Sommaruga Howard and Catherine Mela as members.
The proposals above in this text have been legally assessed regarding its compatibility with Swiss Civil Code in a Memorandum 2016-06-02 by Advocate, Public Notary, Oscar Battegay, Battegay Dürr and Wagner Law Firm of Basel Switzerland.
The English version has been translated to Spanish by Maite Pi Ordónez and Crristina Martinez-Taboada Kutz.
The revision text and its proposals have been, article by article, scrutinized, amended and, finally, unanimously accepted by the Board of Directors in ordinary Board meeting in Granada, Spain between 25th and 27th of June 2016, recommending it to the voting membership of IAGP for final, approving, decision. The Board meeting was chaired by IAGP President Kate Bradshaw Tauvon and its Secretary was Catherine Mela.
INFORMATION AND QUESTIONS
Queries and comments about the above Constitution and By-Laws should be sent to .