CEPIS Standing Orders
These Standing Orders describe the regulations permitted in Article 11, point 1 of the Constitution and are to be used in conjunction with it and its Articles.
The Constitution states that Council may lay down Regulations to regulate matters for which no rules or only incomplete rules have been laid down in those Articles. Such regulations may not be in conflict with the law – even where there is no imperative law – or with the Articles.
The words and expressions used in these Regulations shall bear the same meanings as are respectively assigned to them in the Constitution.
1.1. Eligibility for Membership
1.1.1 The Constitution specifies in paragraph 3.4.1:
“The Council decides on the admission of new members of all categories on the basis of the following criteria:
- a) their ability to represent nation-wide professional, scientific and technical informatics interests;
- b) their ability to fulfil the mission and objectives of CEPIS”.
1.1.2. Any new member society will be expected to meet these four criteria:
- a) members hip is composed primarily of individual members, although not to the exclusion of corporate bodies or groups of individuals;
- b) it is managed by a board/council democratically elected directly or indirectly by the membership;
- c) membership includes individuals working within the profession;
- d) not having profit as a main goal.
1.1.3. Formal Application for Membership
Applications for membership in CEPIS have to be submitted by using the application form as per Annex 1 of these Standing Orders. The forms have to be completed and submitted to the Secretariat duly signed by (an) authorized person(s) together with the Statutes and Standing Orders, or equivalent, of the applicant’s organisation.
1.2. Possible Actions concerning defaulting members
1.2.1 Uncertainty has arisen concerning the consequences of member societies failing to pay their membership fees by the end of the first quarter as required by the constitution.
1.2.2 The Board of Directors is empowered to suspend from membership any member for non-payment of its fees (paragraph 5.2 of the Constitution).
1.2.3 CEPIS full members have a number of member rights, including:
- a) obtaining benefits for their individual members at conferences, journals etc.
- b) receiving results of Task Forces etc., being listed on the CEPIS website.
- c) attending and speaking at Council, committee and TF/SIN meetings.
- d) proposing, seconding and voting in Council and committee meetings.
- e) nominating and voting in elections.
1.2.4 Suspension of member rights applies to items c) to e) above. On item c) suspension should not prevent attendance at meetings but the right to speak should be at the discretion of the meeting’s chair.
1.2.5 Termination of membership of CEPIS requires a two-thirds majority vote at a Council. It can be terminated “on the grounds of bankruptcy and other comparable circumstances which can cause CEPIS or the profession to be brought into disrepute or being more than one year in arrears with payment of fees” (Article 3.6).
1.2.6 Given that invoices are sent out in the late autumn for payment by the end of the first quarter of the fiscal year it would be possible for the Board of Directors to suspend these rights at the Spring Council although elections do not normally take place until the autumn meeting.
1.2.7 The following action concerning members not paying their subscriptions on time will be taken by the Board of Directors:
Step 1: the Board of Directors will advise the Spring Council each year of the names of any societies that have not paid their subscriptions.
Step 2: Any defaulting society should expect that, unless formal advice of payment has been received by CEPIS before the Board of Directors meeting preceding the Autumn Council meeting, that the Board of Directors will suspend its member rights with immediate effect.
1.2.8 After termination of membership CEPIS will still try to recover any money owing.
2. Affiliate Members
2.1. Membership Basis
2.1.1 Article 3.1 of the CEPIS Constitution recognizes affiliate membership. Article 3.2 states that “Only full members are members within the meaning of the law and are qualified to vote”. Article 3.3.3 defines that “Affiliate membership is open to pan-European and other international organisations”.
2.1.2 No further references are made to affiliate membership in the Constitution.
2.2 Benefits of Affiliate Membership
2.2.1 The objective is that affiliate membership will be to the benefit of CEPIS, its member societies and affiliated bodies. Examples of the kinds of benefits are:
- a) Increased awareness of the goals and objectives of CEPIS, its member societies and affiliated bodies
- b) Reduced fees for membership, publications and conferences
- c) Publicising pan-European events amongst CEPIS member societies and affiliated bodies
- d) Cooperation in those areas where there are pan-European mutual interests that affect practicing informatics professionals (such as standards, curricula content, educational requirements, skills, etc.)
- e) Coordination, where appropriate, of approaches to the EU.
2.3 Affiliate Membership requirements
2.3.1 Bodies seeking to become affiliate members must:
- a) support the objectives of CEPIS;
- b) agree to abide by the CEPIS Constitution and the various guidelines that may from time to time be developed to support the Constitution;
- c) fit the membership parameters. In practical terms this will mean bodies whose membership is predominantly composed of informatics professionals. Such bodies are likely to be similar international organisations to CEPIS (such as IFIP) or bodies which have a particular special interest within the informatics profession (such as EFMI – the European Federation for Medical Informatics);
- d) pay a reduced membership subscription such as may be agreed by the CEPIS Council from time to time.
2.4 Participation within CEPIS
2.4.1 All members will be observers at Council meetings and will contribute to all discussions, as appropriate. However, as noted in the Constitution, affiliates have no voting rights. Council will agree the fee, which shall never be less than 1 unit.
2.4.2 Affiliate members have the same rights as full members to participate in task forces, special interest networks, etc. as appropriate.
2.4.3 All affiliate bodies will adhere to these guidelines. Where appropriate CEPIS may agree a specific co-operation agreement with an affiliated body.
3.1.1 At least three months prior to an election, the Board of Directors shall invite each Full Member to propose as many candidates as there are vacancies. Such proposals must be forwarded to the Secretariat in writing no later than two months before the election. The invitation to nominate candidates for election will be accompanied by the criteria for each office for which there is a vacancy.
18.104.22.168 Those candidates who have been proposed by at least four Full Members, are asked by the Board of Directors to provide written confirmation that they will be a representative of their country’s Full Member at the time of election and are willing to serve as a CEPIS Board Member, if so elected, and to submit a short biography, a written statement of their expected contribution to CEPIS, and a photograph.
22.214.171.124 Candidates for whom such confirmation has been received no later than one month before the election are announced by mail from the Secretariat to all Full Members as Nominated Candidates.
3.1.2 If insufficient nominations have been received for any position, at the discretion of Council, Members actually present at a Council shall have the right to propose candidates from the floor. New candidates proposed from the floor during the election session must be endorsed in writing by at least four Full Members, including agreement of the candidate and a statement of their expected contribution to CEPIS, to be announced as Nominated Candidates.
3.2.1 The voting shall be conducted by secret ballot for each member of the Board of Directors, even when the number of Nominated Candidates equals the number of vacancies (n).
3.2.2 For each ballot the number of votes for each candidate is counted and the candidates with the highest number of votes are elected. If it is not possible to separate n candidates from others because some candidates have an equal number of votes there shall be another ballot, appropriately structured, in which these candidates are the only candidates. The results will be formally declared.
3.2.3 In the case where the number of Nominated Candidates is equal to the number of vacancies, Council can agree to elect candidates by acclamation. If Council agrees to hold a ballot, any candidate receiving fewer than 50% of the valid votes cast will be eliminated from the process. A further election will he held to fill the position(s) remaining vacant, even if such election has to be postponed to a subsequent meeting. Until then it is the responsibility of the Board of Directors to perform the duties allocated to the position(s) remaining vacant.
3.3 Criteria for Candidates for Office
3.3.1 Candidates must conform with the rules as set out in the CEPIS Constitution.
3.3.2 As a necessity, Candidates should have sufficient time to devote to CEPIS and the work between meetings as well as attendance at meetings.
3.3.3 It is strongly recommended that candidates should also have:
- Links with their national policy makers.
- Contact with the Commission of the European Union.
3.3.4 Financial support is desirable, for participation at meetings.
3.3.5 Wherever possible a good geographic spread should be represented on the Board of Directors.
3.3.6 The CEPIS Board of Directors Responsibilities and Expectations are outlined in Annex II of these Standing Orders.
3.4. Rules concerning Candidates
3.4.1 Candidates must have the support of their national society, whose membership has not been suspended at that time. (If membership fees are not paid on time the Board of Directors may suspend the member involved until payment is made. While suspended the member involved shall not be allowed to exercise its membership rights).
3.4.2 The members of the Board of Directors shall be appointed from full members by the Council. Each full member is entitled to put forward one or more candidates for appointment as a member of the Board of Directors. Such a candidature is not binding. Each member of the Board of Directors shall hold his seat for three years and can be re- elected once. A resigned member of the Board of Directors who served two subsequent periods can be re-elected again at least one year after his retirement. Within an interval of less than five years no two persons from one and the same country shall be appointed President.
3.4.3 Only full members shall have the vote. Each full member shall have one vote, which may be cast through one of its delegates, unless the full member has duly appointed a proxy to exercise its vote.
4.1 All CEPIS funds, either coming from membership fees or from external sources, shall be accounted for in one consolidated financial administration supervised by the Board of Directors and any other adviser as appointed from time to time.
4.2 The Board of Directors designates a person in every subordinate body of CEPIS to be responsible for the funds allocated to that body. (In practice this is the same person as the one leading/co-ordinating such an entity).
4.3 All revenues and expenditures of CEPIS and its subordinate bodies shall be budgeted in advance. All budget proposals shall clearly reflect the financial consequences of planned activities.
4.4 Immediately after the Council meeting has decided upon the total (consolidated) budget of CEPIS for the next fiscal year, the Board of Directors shall decide the budgets for all subordinate bodies.
4.5 Apart from the (permanent) Secretariat and Boardof Directors meetings, all activities of CEPIS Officers shall be treated as missions.
4.6 Mission proposals, including a comprehensive statement of goals and means, will be submitted for approval to the President or his designee, who will act on behalf of the Board of Directors. No missions will be eligible for approval unless accompanied by a clear budget proposal.
4.7 No expenses shall be refunded unless they are the consequence of an approved mission and the claim is made not later than four weeks after that mission.
4.8 No Officer of CEPIS shall receive any remuneration, unless explicitly approved by the Council meeting at the time of its budget deliberations.
4.9 The Board of Directors shall define an expense policy.
4.10 The Board of Directors shall authorize the Secretariat to re-allocate funds between budget headings, the limit to be set each year, provided that:
a) the overall forecast result is maintained in line with the original budget.
b) any re-allocations are subsequently reported back to the Board of Directors on a quarterly basis.
4.11 The Board of Directors is empowered to set up a Finance Subcommittee if it considers this to be helpful in the operation of CEPIS.
4.12 CEPIS is a non profit organisation, and this means that its income will be applied solely towards the promotion of the objectives outlined in the Constitution. Therefore, no part of such income will be transferred, directly or indirectly, to the members by way of dividend, bonus or profit. Moreover no Board of Directors member of CEPIS, appointed to any task, will be paid by salary or fee or will receive any other kind of money benefit.
Provided that, nothing will prevent any payment in good faith by CEPIS:
- for reimbursing out of pocket expenditures to any member of the Council or the Board of Directors for missions specifically approved in advance.
- for professional fee in exchange for contract services provided by individuals of societies formally approved by the Council or Board of Directors.
In this case no member of the Council or Board of Directors should be involved in the contract or should own any share of the involved companies.
5.1 Committees form part of the formal infrastructure of CEPIS.
5.2 They are delegated specific ongoing responsibilities associated with CEPIS policies and administration.
5.3 Membership is drawn from the representatives of CEPIS Member Societies and Affiliates. Chairs are appointed by the President on the recommendation of the Board of Directors.
5.4 Committees report on their activities quarterly to the Board of Directors and twice yearly, in summary, to Council.
5.5 Funding is through normal budget and reporting procedures (CEPIS financial guidelines).
5.6 Member Societies Forum
5.6.1 The purpose of the Member Society Forum is to provide a forum for the discussion of matters of mutual interest to member societies, particularly those related to operational and organisational aspects of the member societies.
5.6.2 Recommendations may be made for decision by Council.
6. Task Forces and Special Interest Networks
6.1. Task Forces
CEPIS is committed to promoting cooperation between informatics professionals across Europe. One way by which CEPIS has sought to achieve this objective is by establishing Task Forces.
126.96.36.199 With its very limited resources CEPIS can support only a very small number of these at any one time unless they can attract substantial external funding. Experience suggests that to be successful a number of issues need to be addressed at the outset.
188.8.131.52 Proposers of new Task Forces will be expected to provide the relevant information for which guidelines are depicted in Annex III so to enable CEPIS to make a decision.
184.108.40.206 Task forces are expected to report regularly to the Board of Directors and Council. The Chairs of Task Forces are appointed by the President on the recommendation of the Board of Directors.
6.2. Special Interest Networks
6.2.1 SINs are networks of individuals and national groups sharing some common interests and interacting largely electronically. Possible activities include:
- a) Linking Member Society Special Interest Groups through email list servers, etc.
- b) Newsletters – electronic and/or paper
- c) Face to face meetings where practical
- d) Advice to CEPIS on policy/action opportunities in the area
- e) Coordinating CEPIS responses to EU and other initiatives
- f) Interchanges of conference details etc.
- g) Annual conferences/summer schools
- h) Maintaining/developing CEPIS’s links to various activities
See ANNEX 4 for guidance on the establishments of SINs.
7. Approval for use of the CEPIS name/logo
7.1 The ‘member of CEPIS’ logo is available to all members to use freely. Members are encouraged to include this logo on their websites and in marketing materials.
7.2 The use of the CEPIS logo will be subject to a policy agreed by Council.
8. External Relations
8.1.1 To establish CEPIS as the recognised voice of European informatics professionals.
8.1.2 To maximise CEPIS’ influence on international developments affecting informatics professionals and users.
8.1.3 To assist CEPIS member societies to obtain benefits from other international bodies.
8.2.1 While recognising CEPIS’s limited human and financial resources, CEPIS will:
8.2.2 Seek strong bilateral links through regular contact and, where possible, shared activities with other international informatics organisations which:
- a) represent informatics professionals (e.g. ACM, IEEE CS, etc), both directly with their headquarters and with any European activities, and/or
- b) pursue complementary objectives (e.g. FID Tokyo Declaration)
8.2.3 Participate in EU and similar action programmes and consultation exercises, seeking external financial support whenever possible.
8.2.4 Develop links with national and international bodies in pursuit of CEPIS programmes, e.g. government departments, employers’ organisations and trade unions.
Annex 1 – CEPIS Membership Application Form
Annex 2 – CEPIS Board of Directors Responsibilities & Expectations
The CEPIS Board of Directors is made up of 7 individuals: 1 President and 6 ordinary members.
The Secretary General attends all CEPIS Board of Directors and Council meetings. All Board of Directors members contribute their time on a voluntary basis.
Role of the Board of Directors
The role of the CEPIS Board of Directors is to ensure that:
- CEPIS strategy and action plans, as agreed by Council, are implemented;
- Operational decisions are taken effectively, to ensure the smooth running of CEPIS;
- Members have all the relevant information they need to ensure that they can take decisions about CEPIS finances, operations and progress;
- The organisation is run with due care and diligence and that it conforms with all legal and taxation requirements;
- CEPIS projects are properly managed and that there is a regular flow of information regarding them;
- CEPIS has a professional image in its relations with members and with external organisations such as the EC.
The CEPIS Board of Directors is responsible:
- To nominate a CEPIS representative for the ICDL Foundation Board.
- If the CEPIS President needs to temporarily assign one or several of his/her responsibilities, to assign a Deputy President to substitute for the President in these responsibilities as defined in the Constitution article 4.2.
The CEPIS Board of Directors members have the normal responsibilities and obligations that apply to the directors of any commercial organisation.
The expected contribution of Board members to CEPIS is as follows:
- Meetings. Meetings may take place at a weekend, to avail of economy air travelling and to minimise the impact on employers. There are 3 main kinds of meetings:
- Council Meetings. There are two Council Meetings per year. A Board Meeting is scheduled for the same place to precede Council. A Member Society Forum may also be scheduled. The total time for all three meetings is usually two days, plus any necessary travel time.
- Board Meetings. There are up to 5 Board meetings – usually one day’s duration and scheduled to take place at a hub, usually the Brussels office.
- Other Meetings. All Board members have additional meetings that need to be attended, for example CEO Meetings, Task Force meetings, meetings with government officials, and meetings with the ICDL Foundation. One member of the CEPIS Board of Directors is always appointed as the CEPIS director on the ICDL Foundation Board; which can represent a very significant time commitment, on top of CEPIS meetings.
- Preparation and reading, emails etc. There is a continuous stream of material that needs to be digested by members.
Role of President
CEPIS President is responsible to Council for all aspects of CEPIS business, relationships with member societies, relationships with other organisations (including the EC) and ensuring that CEPIS is run in an efficient and effective fashion. The President chairs all Board and Council meetings.
Expectations of Board members
CEPIS Board members are expected to attend Board and Council meetings. In addition they should:
- Act in the best interest of CEPIS and CEPIS member societies, above their own personal and national interest, and independently of other affiliations that might influence their judgement.
- Have high ethical standards both within CEPIS and outside, so that the reputation of CEPIS is held high.
- Support the decisions of the CEPIS Board and Council, even in the event of disagreement.
- Understand the CEPIS organisation, its members and strategies, so that sound judgement is brought to bear on all CEPIS Board decisions.
- Be financially literate so that they can understand the implications of financial statements and can make informed judgements.
- Have experience of being involved in the running of organisations.
- Speak English well, as all CEPIS affairs are conducted in English.
- Always behave in a professional and courteous manner in all CEPIS business, both internal and external;
- Fulfil all other obligations as agreed with the Board.
Annex 3 – Guidelines for The Formation Of Task Forces
Task Forces should have a clear purpose of direct relevance to the CEPIS objectives.
- What is the purpose of the Task Force (TF)?
- How would it assist CEPIS achieve its objectives?
- Why is it important for CEPIS to sponsor the work? Does it have a clear European dimension?
- How will you and CEPIS know if the work of the TF is a success? Who benefits from the results?
- What value will the results be to CEPIS member societies? Will the topic engage a number of CEPIS member societies?
2. Tasks and Timetable
Task Forces should identify specific tasks and their likely duration.
- What is the work programme?
- What is the TF’s proposed method of working: face-to-face meetings, electronically, etc?
- What are the deliverables? When will they be delivered?
- How will results be disseminated?
3. Finance & Resources
Task Forces are expected to be self-supporting.
- What are the financial implications of the work programme?
- What financial support do you have?
- From where will any necessary external funds be obtained?
- Are these funds essential to carrying out the work?
Experience shows that success depends on real commitment from a small group of people.
- Who is the proposed chair of the TF? Who will be the members?
- What support do they have for their work?
- How much time can each of the members commit to the work?
Creating and maintaining momentum is important.
- If CEPIS approves the plan, what happens next?
- Are there any specific actions/assistance that you require CEPIS to provide to help launch the TF?
Annex 4 – Guidance on The Establishment of SINs
For a SIN to be established, a proposal must be put to Council and approved, which may happen in one of two ways:
a) The need may be identified during discussion at Council and a member may accept responsibility for producing a proposal.
b) The need may be identified elsewhere and a member may bring a proposal to Council.
Every SIN should have terms of reference approved by Council, covering the following points:
- Background and introduction – a clear statement of why the SIN is needed, what topics it will cover and how it supports the aims of CEPIS.
- Purpose: what the SIN aims to achieve?
- Membership: who will take part in the initial meetings (a minimum of three member societies shall normally be represented).
- Plan of work: will these be physical or electronic meetings; what will be their frequency?
- Deliverables: what will the SIN produce?
- Outcomes: assuming the SIN is established, how will its work affect CEPIS?
- Structure: what structure will be needed? Who will be the chair, the secretary?
The Board of Directors will receive reports from SINs each year and use the information contained in it to take a view on the effectiveness of the SIN. A proposal to continue or disband SINs will be made to Council each year and a vote taken to ascertain the views of members on Board’s recommendation.
Annex 5 – Convening Board, MSF and Council Meetings
Council (and where applicable MSF) meeting dates are agreed at each meeting. A firm date and location are agreed for the meeting immediately following the current one. A tentative date (and whenever possible, location) will be agreed for the meeting after that.
An annual calendar of Board meetings will be agreed each November for the following calendar year. Once set firmly, dates of meetings shall not normally be changed.
Setting the agenda
Article 8.2 of the Constitution requires the circulation of the agenda for Council meetings between one month and two months prior to the meeting. The President and Secretary General may consult on the content of the agenda and any such consultation must be planned to permit the agenda to be circulated to members in accordance with this stipulation.
MSF agenda shall normally be circulated with the Council agenda where appropriate. The Board meeting agenda shall be agreed between the President and Secretary General two weeks before each meeting. The President may choose to consult members on the contents of the agenda before the final version is circulated.
Once circulated, the agenda will be followed at meetings. Items for Any Other Business shall normally be advised to the President before the meeting begins.
Records of meetings
Minutes of meetings shall be taken by the Secretary General or designee, and distributed in draft not later than one month after the meeting has taken place. Any corrections required to ensure the accuracy of minutes shall be made at the subsequent meeting.
Annex 6 – CEPIS Secretariat
The Secretariat is charged with the day-to-day management of CEPIS and is led by the Secretary General who reports to the Board of Directors.
The Secretariat shall carry out operations in accordance with the Constitution and under the general Standing Orders and Strategy of CEPIS as agreed by the Board and Council.
The Secretariat responsibilities include, but are not limited to: internal and external relations and operations, administration, finance, accounting and bookkeeping, maintaining and keeping CEPIS records, supporting CEPIS bodies and related meetings, and managing Board members offices.
Annex 7: CEPIS Award
In order to promote informatics, professionalism, professional excellence, and CEPIS, CEPIS may deliver a recognition under the name CEPIS Award.
The form of recognition together with the procedure may vary.
The recognition can be awarded to natural and legal persons for their achievements in the field of informatics or their work for CEPIS.
The recognition shall be delivered in public in a ceremonial manner.
Annex 8 – CEO Forum
In order to facilitate best practice between members a CEO Forum may be held. This Forum may bring together members societies and will be held at agreed intervals.