2009 Bylaws of the International Association of Genocide Scholars

Past amendments:

22 September 2011

15 May 2013


ARTICLE 1. Name and Purpose

A. The name of this organization is The International Association of Genocide Scholars, Incorporated (IAGS).  The name is trademarked, and may be used only with the written permission of the Executive Board of the IAGS.


B. The IAGS is an organization designed to further research and teaching on the causes, conditions, and effects of genocide as a worldwide phenomenon and to advance policy studies on prevention and intervention. Members take cognizance that although academic definitions will differ, the United Nations Convention on the Prevention and Punishment of Genocide is international law and serves to guide the organization’s purpose.


ARTICLE 2. Membership

The current bylaws shall be posted on the IAGS website.


ARTICLE 3. Dues and Affiliation

A. Dues will be determined by the Executive Board and reviewed periodically. To be in good standing, members must be current in their dues.


B. The IAGS is a non-profit, non-stock membership corporation registered in the Commonwealth of Virginia, USA. As a 501 C3 organization, the IAGS is allowed to accept tax exempt contributions to the extent provided by law.


ARTICLE 4. Governance

A. The Executive Board shall be composed of the President, the First Vice President, the Second Vice President, the New Media/Communications Officer, and the Secretary/Treasurer. Each member of the Executive Board shall serve for two years and may not be re­elected to the same position in the subsequent election, with the exception of Secretary/Treasurer and Media/Communications, who may be elected for a second consecutive term only. The Advisory Council consists of seven elected members who serve for two years, at least one of whom shall be a student representative elected by graduate students at the annual meeting or, failing that, by the Executive Board. Each member of the Advisory Council may only be re-elected once to serve two consecutive terms.


B. Elections for all officers will be conducted by electronic mail beginning at least one month before and closing before the biennial conference convenes. The Nominations Committee shall consist of the members of the Advisory Council, except for those running for an Officer position. The Chair of the Nominating Committee will be selected from the members of the Advisory Council by the President. The Nominating Committee shall, if it is possible to find willing candidates, nominate two persons for each elective office on the Executive Board and up to twelve candidates for positions on the Advisory Council. The Nominations Committee will seek to recognize the diversity of members of the IAGS in respect to scholarly discipline, geographic location, gender, employment and educational status.

The Chair of the Nominating Committee shall solicit nominations from the membership and confirm the willingness of those nominated to serve if elected. A short statement of the nominee’s scholarly qualifications and plans to enhance the work of the IAGS should accompany the nominees’ agreement to serve if elected. These statements will be circulated with the ballots.


C. The Chair of the Nominating Committee shall oversee the counting of the ballots for positions on the Executive Board and the Advisory Council. Members of the IAGS Advisory Council shall act as monitors to verify the vote count and will jointly confirm the results at the IAGS business meeting convened at the biennial conference.  The Chair of the Nominating Committee will inform the candidates of the election results before the biennial conference and announce the results of the vote at the business meeting of the biennial conference.


D. The President shall chair the meetings of the Executive Board and oversee all activities of the organization. In consultation with the Executive Board and Advisory Council, the President shall be the spokesperson for the IAGS.


E. The First Vice-President shall, among other activities, work closely with the President and Executive Board in organizing the biennial conference; and shall take on such other duties as requested by the President.


F. The Second Vice-President shall assist the President with international outreach, co-sponsorship of other conferences, and other administrative responsibilities of the IAGS.


G.  The New Media/Communications Officer shall develop and maintain the IAGS website and Facebook pages and work to develop the IAGS presence in terms of new media technologies.  The first New Media/Communications Officer will be elected at the 2011 biennial meeting or, failing that, by appointment of the Executive Board.


H. The Secretary/Treasurer shall conduct annual membership campaigns, publish a newsletter on activities and publications of IAGS members, inform members of proposed resolutions and amendments to the bylaws, oversee the website and listserv, maintain IAGS bank accounts and financial records, make quarterly financial reports to the Executive Board and Advisory Council, and arrange for annual auditing of the books of the IAGS by a Certified Public Accountant approved by the Executive Board. All checks over $50 shall be co-signed by both the Secretary/Treasurer and another IAGS officer appointed by the Executive Board.


I. The Executive Board may employ an Administrative Assistant to assist it in conducting the annual membership campaign and other communications, maintenance of the IAGS website and listserv, and other duties.


J. The Executive Board shall employ a book-keeper to assist the Secretary/Treasurer with professional maintenance of financial records, bank and credit card accounts, preparation of quarterly financial reports, and submission of financial records for annual audit.


K. The Advisory Council shall act as the Nominating Committee, lead and serve on IAGS committees appointed by the President, offer management advice to the Executive Board, and take on other tasks requested by members of the Executive Board. The President may appoint Special Advisors in order to assist the organization with special duties and to represent the diversity of membership in the IAGS. Such Special Advisors shall have no vote in decisions of the Advisory Council that require votes.


L. In the event of a vacancy on the Executive Board, the Executive Board shall choose a member of the Advisory Council to fill the position. Vacancies on the Advisory Council shall be filled by the Executive Board from the IAGS membership.


M. The IAGS Membership Committee shall have responsibility for membership recruitment and retention for the IAGS.  The IAGS Membership Committee will consist of a Membership Director (IAGS Second Vice-President) and two other IAGS members chosen by the Executive Board and will report to the Secretary/Treasurer.  The Committee will conduct an outreach program to recruit new members previously unaffiliated with the IAGS. The Membership Committee will also oversee an annual membership renewal campaign to assure continued membership by current members in the IAGS.


ARTICLE 5. Biennial Conference and Business Meeting

A. There shall be a minimum of one IAGS general conference every two years, including a business meeting. All presenters and discussants at the conference are expected to be paid-up members of the IAGS and register for the conference.  All persons attending the conference must register for the conference and pay registration fees, unless such fees have been waived by decision of the Executive Board.


B. All persons attending or voting at the Biennial Business Meeting must be paid-up members of the IAGS.


C. A conference evaluation form will be distributed with the registration package at each conference of the IAGS. Following each biennial conference, the Executive Board shall carry out an assessment of the just-completed conference and review the lessons learned for the next conference.


ARTICLE 6. Resolutions

A. Resolutions committing the Association to a stand on a public issue require a two-thirds majority of those voting at the biennial business meeting or by e-mail ballot. For a proposed resolution to pass, voting must have been undertaken by a quorum of at least 51% of paid up IAGS members at the time of the vote.


B. Resolutions directly related to genocide or other mass atrocities, including early warning signs thereof, may be proposed by any member in good standing.


C. Proposed resolutions shall first be submitted to the Resolutions Committee appointed by the President and the Executive Board for review of their linguistic clarity and historical and factual accuracy.  The standard of review shall be that of an article for the IAGS journal.  The Resolutions Committee will recommend to the Executive Board and Advisory Council whether the Resolution should be forwarded to the IAGS membership for a vote.


D. After consulting with the Advisory Council, the Executive Board shall decide whether or not the proposed resolution will be submitted to the IAGS membership for a vote within two weeks of submission by the Resolutions Committee.   Resolutions must be circulated by the Executive Board to the IAGS membership at least thirty days before the close of voting by IAGS members.  E-mail voting shall begin as soon as the resolution is submitted to the membership by the Executive Board and close at the end of thirty days of voting.  Votes will be submitted and counted by the Secretary/Treasurer of the IAGS, and after verification by the Executive Board, results of the voting will be announced to the members of the IAGS.


E. Letters, Op-Eds, and other statements by the President or the Executive Board communicating IAGS policies on public issues that have been expressed in IAGS Resolutions shall not require further approval of the membership, but should be in accord with such approved policies.


ARTICLE 7. Privacy

An IAGS Members Directory shall be prepared by the Secretary/Treasurer annually. Requests by any members to omit their e-mail addresses, telephone numbers, or other information shall be honored. No sharing of the organization’s membership lists is permitted without the unanimous agreement of the Executive Board after consultation with the Advisory Council, and such sharing shall not normally be granted. Persons who compile mass mailing lists using the IAGS Members Directory violate the privacy rights of members. Use of such lists may cause such persons to be barred from use of the IAGS listserv and Blog after consideration of the facts of the case by the Executive Board.


ARTICLE 8. Journal

The IAGS shall sponsor a professional journal. The editors of the journal will be appointed by the IAGS Executive Board. The editors shall be responsible for the quality of the publication, for selecting associate editors, and developing editorial policy. The journal editors shall submit articles for peer review, and will make all decisions regarding content of the journal without interference from the IAGS Executive Board and Advisory Council. The editors may in their discretion seek advice on any issues concerning the journal.


ARTICLE 9. Amendments

The bylaws may be amended by majority vote at a regular IAGS business meeting or by e-mail ballot between meetings. The Secretary/Treasurer shall inform members of the proposed amendments six weeks before the close of voting on the amendments.  Votes shall be submitted to and counted by the Secretary/Treasurer and the result reported to the Executive Board and Advisory Council and communicated to IAGS members.