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Bylaws of SIEF

Voted at the 7th SIEF congress, Budapest April 27, 2001.
Amended at the 8th SIEF congress, Marseille April 29, 2004.
Amended at the 9th SIEF Congress, Derry, June 18, 2008.
Amended at the General Assembly in Amsterdam, September, 12, 2014.
Amended at the 13th SIEF Congress, Göttingen, March 28, 2017.

SIEF, the International Society for Ethnology and Folklore, founded in Athens on September 8th, 1964 was the successor to the Commission Internationale des Arts et Traditions Populaires (CIAP), an international scientific organisation, which owed its origin to the Congrès International des Arts Populaires held in Prague in 1928 under the auspices of the League of Nations.

Art 1: SIEF is a scientific society whose objectives are to develop scholarly work in the field of European ethnology and folklore, to promote publication in the field, to stimulate co-operation among its scholars and scientific organisations, and to contribute to the advancement of knowledge.

Art 2: The official seat of the Society shall be the office of the current Secretariat.

Art 3: The official languages of the Society are English, French and German.

Art 4: The fiscal year shall run from January 1st to December 31st.

Art 5: The Society shall be composed of individual members.

Art 6: Any person qualified by his/her scholarly work in the field of European ethnology and/or folklore may become an individual member of the Society. Application for membership shall be sent to the current secretariat. The names of new members shall be published on the SIEF's website.

Art 7: The organisational bodies of the Society shall include: (a) the General Assembly, (b) the Executive Board, (c) scholarly Working Groups. The office-holders of the Society shall be the President, an Executive Vice-President, a Vice-President (i.e. the Presidency), and 6-9 Board members at large who constitute together the Executive Board. All office-holders of the Society shall be elected by the General Assembly.

Art 8:  The membership fees are decided by the Executive Board. Members must pay the fee no later than the 1st of March every year to the SIEF secretariat. Membership lapses if the fee is not paid.

Art 9: The General Assembly shall meet in connection with each congress of the Society. All members present may vote. The duties of the General Assembly shall be: (1) to elect for the period until the next General Assembly the President, the Vice-Presidents, and the members of the Executive Board, (2) to approve the accounts of the financial position of the Society (3) to give advice on time, place and topic of the next congress, (4) to amend the bylaws, (5) to decide any other matter laid before it by the president and/or the Executive Board. The Executive Board may also refer any of the duties above to an online vote of all SIEF members between its congresses. In such cases, the decisions made by members in an online vote shall have the same standing as the decisions of the General Assembly at the society's congress.

Art 10: Elections at the General Assembly will be held by show of hands. Nominations for the President and the Vice-Presidents, and Executive Board Members of the Society, proposed and seconded by members of the Society and with the consent of the person nominated, should be received in written form by the Presidency at least 48 hours before the General Assembly convenes.

Art 11: The Executive Board consists of the President, the Executive Vice-president and the Vice-president, who together constitute the Presidency, and 6-9 General Board members, all of them elected by the General Assembly. Members of the Executive Board may serve no more than two terms in either section, i.e. the Presidency or as General Board members. However, the Executive Vice-President, charged with secretarial affairs, can serve for more than two terms in the same position. One term is considered to be the period from one congress to the next. The Executive Board should represent different regions of Europe as well as different schools and traditions of ethnology and folklore. At least one of the members should be on the Board or presidency of one of SIEF’s Working Groups. The Executive Board is the main organisational body of the Society. In between the congresses, the Board is responsible for the whole – administrative and scholarly - activity of the Society. The Executive Board shall prepare the meetings of the General Assembly and report about its activities to the Assembly.

Art 12: Scholarly Working Groups shall be established to foster special areas and fields of European ethnology and folklore. Every member of the Society can suggest to establish new Working Groups, seconded by at least five (5) other members of the Society. The Executive Board may decide to create scholarly Working Groups to undertake special tasks or to investigate certain problems connected with furthering the field of European ethnology and folklore.

Art 13: Each Working Group must have a recognizable structure with a Working Group Board, regulations, and a membership list, which shall be submitted to the SIEF secretariat. Working Groups must organize periodical assemblies and provide yearly reports to the Executive Board. In addition, they must keep their records and submit them to the SIEF secretariat when they cease activities. The Working Groups are regulated by the statutes adopted by the SIEF Executive Board

Art 14: The President represents the Society and shall be responsible - together with the Vice-Presidents - for the scholarly profile and activity of the Society. He or she is also responsible for convening meetings of the Executive Board and the General Assembly.

Art 15: The Executive Board may decide on a division of responsibilities for its two Vice-presidents. The Vice-Presidents are responsible for the functioning of the secretariat, the website and SIEF publication endeavours.

Art 16: If a Board member has reason to step down from office during his/her term, the Board may appoint a new interim member in his or her stead who then may stand for election at the next membership meeting.

Art 17: The congress of the Society is to be held every two years; it shall be held at least every three years. The organisation of the congress shall be entrusted to a local organising committee. The Executive Board appoints the Scientific Committee consisting of members of the local committee and members of the SIEF executive board.

Art 18: Amendments of the bylaws shall be decided upon by simple majority of the General Assembly. Proposals must be made by at least five members of the Society and submitted to the President at least six (6) months before the next meeting of the General Assembly. Any proposals for modification of the bylaws should be published on the SIEF website before the meeting of the Assembly.

Art 19: The Society may be dissolved at the request of a two-thirds majority of the members of the Society. In that case such assets as there may be are to be placed at the disposal of an international scholarly society of similar character.

Art 20: These Bylaws are effective as of March 28, 2017.