CONSTITUTION OF THE IFCA
Article 1: Name and Type
1.1 The name of this organization is the "International Federation of Communication
Associations," hereafter referred to as the "Federation".
1.2 In this constitution "communication" is construed broadly and shall mean
any mediating process by which people coordinate their practices of living
together whether the medium is verbal or non-verbal, informational or entertaining,
private or public, durable or transitory, sensory or electronic.
1.3 The Federation embraces organizations that are primarily concerned with
communication: scientific, educational or professional in orientation, non-profit
making, democratically constituted, non-discriminatory regarding ethnicity,
gender, age and religious or political preferences and compatible with the
purposes of the Federation.
1.4 The Federation fundamentally respects the organizational autonomy of
its members. The Federation may dissociate itself from organizations whose
practices conflict with its Articles of Federation but will not assume coercive
powers over them.
1.5 The Federation is incorporated and has letters patent in Canada according
to the requirements of the Canada Corporations Act.
Article 2: Purposes as Stated in the Letters Patent
2. The Federation seeks to facilitate, maintain and coordinate at the inter-organizational
2.1 Efforts leading to scientific inquiries into practices of human communication,
development of human communication technologies and policies and educational
programs in communication theory, research and practice, provided they are
public, socially responsible and beneficial for humankind;
2.2 Dialogues among communication scholars and professionals across national,
linguistic, cultural, ideological and technological barriers, whether through
the arrangement of joint meetings, interdisciplinary workshops or collaborative
research or development projects;
2.3 Intellectual and organizational support for and recognition of competent
communication research, development, teaching and practice, particularly in
countries where interest in communication is either wanting or suppressed;
2.4 Contacts with other international organizations, such as with the United
Nations, representing to them any concerns members of the Federation wish
to collectively express and providing them with a channel through which the
federated communication associations may be reached.
Article 3: Membership
3.1 Kinds of members
3.1.1 Any non-profit, democratically constituted society or association of
individual and voluntary members that is primarily concerned with scientific,
educational or professional aspects of communication and can subscribe to
the Articles of the Federation is eligible to become a Regular Member of the
3.1.2 Any organization that is concerned with scientific, educational or
professional aspects of communication which can subscribe to the Articles
of the Federation but is so constituted that it can not meet the non-profit
organizational and membership criteria of Article 3.1.1 is eligible to become
an Associate Member of the Federation.
3.2 Admission An organization becomes a member of the Federation after presenting
to the Council a written request, describing its interests in communication,
its motivation for joining, including a copy of its constitution, except when
more than ten percent of the current member representatives object to its
admission. An applicant shall be informed about the outcome of this process
at least six months after its application is received.
Membership in the Federation is terminated:
3.3.1 Six months after the Council of the Federation receives a written notice
of intent to withdraw and this notice is authorized by that member's own constitutional
3.3.2 When the activities or the constitution of a member becomes incompatible
with the Articles of the Federation, the Council must warn that member in
writing of the likelihood of membership termination at least six months before
scheduling a vote on the issue. Membership termination is effective when at
least three fourths of the voting member representatives favour suspension.
3.4.1 Each member of the Federation shall appoint by whatever procedure and
for whatever duration it deems appropriate and identify to the Council: one
individual to serve as its representative in the proceedings of the Federation
and as its primary channel of communication between that member and the Council,
and a second individual as back-up, should the first become unavailable. This
second individual may also be designated to represent that member for certain
purposes over a limited period.
3.4.2 Regular Members shall have one vote each. Associated members have no
voting rights except in electing their representative to the Council of the
Federation and in providing advice and consent upon that Council's requests.
Regular Members may vote by proxy and must assign this authority in writing.
Only Regular Members can be proxy holders, however, no individual may represent
more than ten percent of the Federation's members. There will be a reminder
of proxy right attached to each notice of meeting.
3.4.3 Each member of the Federation shall be obligated to make its financial
contribution to the Federation. Financial contributions are determined separately
for each member and may reflect the number of individual members an organization
serves, the benefits it can receive and the financial and material contributions
it is able to make. The distribution of these obligations shall be at the
discretion of the Council but never be such as to be burdensome to any one
3.5 Meetings of the General Membership
3.5.1 Members of the Federation are urged to send their representatives to
meetings arranged by the Council of the Federation, for example, at widely
attended communication conferences or conventions of associations in the Federation.
3.5.2 Notwithstanding the advantages of face-to-face contacts, since the
Federation is international in scope and does not have individuals but organizations
as its members, the formal business of the Federation, especially voting,
is accomplished by mail, fax or written electronic communications except where
the Act requires a meeting. All representatives whose votes have been received
with the first 30 days after mailing the ballots constitute those voting (=100%).
3.5.3 There will be an annual general meeting each year in Canada unless
the members resolve to hold the meeting somewhere else. All members will be
provided with reasonable advance notice of all annual meetings of the general
membership whether by mail, fax or electronic mail. Notice by mail will be
14 days at minimum.
3.5.4 A quorum for an annual general meeting will be 3 members.
3.5.5 Where special business will be conducted, other than that which is
dealt with at the annual general meeting, members will be provided with notice
that will give them sufficient information to form a reasoned judgement.
3.5.6 The Council shall call a meeting of the general membership when it
receives a written requisition signed by at least 10% of the Federation's
Article 4: Governance
4.The governance of the Federation is shared by all members, vested in the
body of their Representatives, and managed by the Council of the Federation.
4.1 The Body of Representatives consists of one representative for each Regular
Member. Except where otherwise stated in the Act or in this constitution,
decisions are reached by simple majority of those voting.
4.2 The Council is composed of one President, one Vice-President, one Treasurer,
one individual representating the Regular Members and one representing the
Associated Members. The Council shall appoint the Secretary of the Federation
either from its five elected members or from the outside in which case this
individual shall be an ex officio member. Elected Council members shall have
one vote each and decisions are reached by simple majority with the President
able to break ties.
4.2.1 Members of the Council are also the executive officers of the Federation.
Provisions and procedures relating to either members of the Council or the
Executive (e.g. election, term of office, powers, expenses, removal and meetings)
4.2.2 The applicants for incorporation shall become the first members of
the Council for the Federation. Their term of office on the Council shall
continue until their successors are elected in August 1992.
4.3 The Council is responsible for managing all affairs of the Federation.
Its specific prerogatives and obligations are:
4.3.1 Representing the Federation to other organizations,
4.3.2 Enacting the Articles of Federation and preparing changes to them for
deliberation and voting,
4.3.3 Facilitating communication and cooperation among all member representatives
and arranging for elections, voting and conversations on substantive matters
4.3.4 Appointing ad-hoc committees, delegating responsibilities for particular
projects or actions and sponsoring other initiatives pursuant to the purposes
of the Federation,
4.3.5 Managing the Federations's finances, preparing an annual budget for
approval, distributing financial obligations among members, negotiating membership
benefits and financing activities sponsored by the Federation,
4.3.6 Creating membership benefits, arranging for the sharing of scarce resources,
initiating collaborative projects, supporting proposals of interest to members
of the Federation,
4.3.7 Keeping records of proceedings and reporting annually to members through
their representatives on the state, activities, plans, budget, financial contributions
by members, and expenses of the Federation.
4.4 The President and the Vice-President, and the two other Council members
representing the Regular Members are elected by the Body of Representatives.
The Council member representing the Associate Members is elected by the Associate
Members. In general, Council members are elected in alternate years respectively
and for two-year terms each. Membership on the Council is limited to two consecutive
terms. Any designated representative of a member of the Federation and also
any of its individual members is eligible to serve on the Council. A nominating
committee shall prepare a list of willing candidates including write-in nominations.
The list should reflect an effort to balance geographical representation.
The Vice-President shall automatically be among those nominated for President
if eligible. Among those nominated for President, the one who receives the
largest number of votes shall be the President and the one who receives the
next largest number of votes shall be the Vice-President. The three other
Council members are elected by receiving the largest number of votes in each
category and from their respective constituencies as specified in Article
4.2. The terms of those serving the Federation on its Council or in any other
capacity shall not be affected by the terms of membership or offices these
individuals may hold in any of the federated organizations.
4.5 Should a vacancy occur in the office of the President, it shall be filled
by the Vice-President. In response to any other vacancy, the Council shall
appoint an appropriate individual to serve out the remaining term, preferably
one who served on the Council or a previous candidate for the position. Should
the need arise to remove any individual from office in the Federation, a non-confidence
vote of three fourths majority of the voting membership is required.
4.6 Duties of Council Members
4.6.1 The President shall be the chief executive officer of the Federation.
He or she shall preside at all meetings of the Federation or Council, have
the general management of the affairs of the Federation, and shall see that
all orders and resolutions of the Council are carried into effect.
4.6.2 The Vice-President shall, in the absence of the President, perform
the duties and exercise the powers of the President, and any other such duties
as directed by the Council.
4.6.3 The Treasurer shall have custody of the Federation's funds and shall
keep full and accurate accounts of all receipts and disbursments of the Federation
in the books belonging to the Federation, and deposit all monies in the name
of and to the credit of the Federation in such chartered bank as is indicated
by the Council. He or she shall also disburse funds as directed by the proper
authority of the Council and render an accounting of all transactions and
a statement of the Federation's finances at regular meetings of the Council.
4.6.4 The Secretary is empowered to carry out the general affairs of the
Council as directed by its members. He or she shall provide Members of the
Federation and Council members with notice of all meetings, keep minutes of
such meetings, and handle correspondence between Members of the Federation
and the Council. He or she shall be the custodian of the seal of the corporation.
4.6.5 The duties of the individual representing the regular members and the
individual representing the associated members on the Council shall be such
as the terms of their engagement call for or the Council requires of them.
4.7 Meetings of the Council
4.7.1 Meetings of the Council may be held at any time and place. All Council
members will be provided with reasonable advance notice of all Council meetings
whether by mail, fax or electronic mail. Notice by mail will be 14 days at
4.7.2 A quorum for a Council meeting will be 3 persons.
4.7.3 Where all Council members consent, a Council member may participate
in a Council meeting by telephone or any other communication facilities that
permit all persons participating in the meeting to hear each other.
Article 5: Finances
5.1 The Federation is a non-profit organization. Its resources and earnings
will in no way inure to the benefit of or be distributed to its members, its
officers or other other private individuals except that the Federation shall
be able to pay reasonable compensation for expenses incurred on behalf of
5.2 The Federation is financed by a yearly assessment of its members as specified
in Article 3.4.3, by grants and charitable contributions if available and
by royalties or income from its activities.
5.3 Council members will not receive remuneration for their services but
may be compensated for their expenses if funds are available.
5.4 The President and Treasurer have signing authority for the Federation.
5.5 The members must appoint an auditor at each annual general meeting to
audit the accounts of the society and to report to the members at the next
annual general meeting.
5.6 In the event the Federation is dissolved or otherwise ceases to function
as such, funds remaining after all debts are paid shall be distributed among
the remaining members in proportion to their contribution as established by
Article 6: Dissolution
6.1 The Federation may be dissolved by a three fourths majority of the voting
6.2 The disolution of the Federation shall be an agenda item at intervals
of not more than five years.
Article 7: Amendments
7.1 A repeal or amendment to any of the articles of this constitution may
be proposed to the Council by any representative of a member of the Federation.
Such a repeal or amendment shall require a three fourths majority of voting
membership to pass.
7.2 The repeal or amendment of an article of this Constitution shall not
be enforced or acted upon until approval has been received from the Canadian
Minister of Consumer and Corporate Affairs.