Statutes and Rules of Procedure

STATUTES OF THE DIVISION OF HISTORY OF SCIENCE AND TECHNOLOGY (DHST)
OF THE INTERNATIONAL UNION OF THE HISTORY AND PHILOSOPHY OF SCIENCE AND TECHNOLOGY (IUHPST)

Approved by the General Assembly, Rio de Janeiro, 26 July 2017

 

AIMS

 Article 1. The aims of the DHST are:

  1. a) to establish and promote co-operation between historians of science and technology either individually or as members of institutions and societies dedicated to History of Science and Technology and related disciplines;
  2. b) to collect and provide for the conservation of artifacts and documents useful for the development of the History of Science and Technology and related disciplines;
  3. c) to promote the development, the diffusion and the organization of teaching and research in the History of Science and Technology and related disciplines;
  4. d) to organize International Congresses of History of Science and Technology and international colloquia, and to sponsor or support other approved meetings of a similar character;
  5. e) to contribute to the establishment and maintenance of links between the different branches of human knowledge, while promoting gender balance and cultural diversity.

Article 2. The DHST is legally registered under the laws of France. Its principal office is located at the Observatoire de Paris, 61, avenue de l’Observatoire, 75014, Paris, France. The DHST is related, through the IUHPST, to the International Council for Science (ICSU) for the purpose of achieving common scientific and scholarly aims and to promote international understanding.

 

MEMBERS, SECTIONS AND COMMISSIONS

Article 3. Subject to recognition by the General Assembly of DHST (Article 14), an Ordinary Member shall be an academy of science, a scientific society, a national committee or any other scientific institution or association of such institutions. Institutions and committees representing scientific activities in a definite territory or country may be accepted as Ordinary Members subject to article 5 below.

Article 4. In addition to the Ordinary Members, the DHST also comprises:
a) Scientific Sections;
b) Historical Commissions;
c) Inter-division commissions with the Division of Logic, Methodology and Philosophy of Science and Technology (DLMPST); these include the DHST-DLMPST Joint Commission (JC; article 9);
d) Inter-Union Commissions in common with other Unions which are members of ICSU;
e) Associate Members.

Article 5. No country may be represented by more than one Ordinary Member except when the General Assembly decides otherwise. Subject to prior approval being obtained from the Council, other history of science and technology societies and federations of such societies may be granted the status of Associate Members. Such members may participate in the Sessions of the General Assembly but do not have voting rights (Article 16).

Article 6. Scientific Sections (“the Sections”) are administratively autonomous and financially independent bodies. Each is free to levy its own membership fees, appoint its own officers, formulate its own Statutes and apply its own Rules of Procedure, provided that these do not conflict with those of the DHST.

In the interest of coordinating the work of the Sections and the DHST, Sections may send an Observer to meetings of the DHST’s Council (Article 19). Likewise, the Council may send one of its members as an Observer to Section meetings. The operation of the DHST shall, however, be independent from the activities of the Sections.

Article 7. Any international association which desires to be recognized as a Scientific Section shall make a request to the Secretary General of the DHST. The Council is empowered to make a decision to admit the association in question on a temporary basis, but this decision must be confirmed the General Assembly during the Session following this decision.

Article 8. Historical Commissions are international associations financially dependent upon the DHST. They are required to report annually to the Secretary General, and to submit reports on their activities to the General Assembly whenever the question of their continuation is individually put to the vote. For the creation or continuation of a Historical Commission, a two-thirds majority of those voting in the General Assembly is required.

Article 9. Inter-Division Commissions are established on the same basis as described in Article 8 above, subject to approval being given by the DLMPST. The Joint Commission is an international association financially dependent upon both Divisions (DHST and DLMPST). It may be dissolved by a two-thirds majority of those voting in the General Assembly of either Division. Its function is to encourage liaison between historians and philosophers of science and technology, principally through the organization of activities shared by the two Divisions.

Article 10. Inter-Union Commissions are established on the same basis as described in Article 8 above, subject to approval being given by the other ICSU Unions concerned.

Article 11. Ordinary Members are entitled to submit proposals for the creation or dissolution of Commissions in accordance with Articles 8 and 10.

Article 12. Each of the Commissions defined in Articles 8 to 10 above (“the Commissions”) shall conduct its affairs in accordance with the Statutes and Rules of Procedure of the DHST. Except in the case of the Joint Commission, Commission Presidents are appointed by the General Assembly on a proposal from the Commission, and each Commission appoints its other Officers. In the case of the Inter-Division Commissions and the Inter-Union Commissions, all appointments are subject to the agreement respectively of DLMPST and of the other Unions concerned.

 

 

ADMINISTRATION AND VOTING RIGHTS

Article 13. The DHST contains the following deliberative bodies:

  1. a) the General Assembly;
  2. b) the Council;
  3. c) the Executive Committee of the Council.

Article 14. Ordinary Members, the Sections, the Commissions, and the members of the Council constitute the General Assembly.

Article 15. The General Assembly is validly constituted only if at least half the total number of Ordinary Members are present. Any Ordinary Member, Section, or Commission may be represented by proxy at a Session of the General Assembly, provided that due notification of this intention and the name of the proxy for that Session are communicated in writing to the Secretary General at least 48 hours before the date of the Session in question.

Article 16. Each Ordinary Member, each Section, each Commission and each member of the Council may generally exercise one vote. However, for any question having a financial implication (which for the avoidance of doubt, includes the creation, continuation or dissolution of Sections and Commissions; see article 4.a, 4.b, 4.c and 4.d), each Ordinary Member may exercise 1, 2, 3, 4, or 5 votes depending on whether it belongs to category A, B, C, D or E as defined in Article 26 below; each member of the Council may similarly exercise one vote. Sections and Commissions do not vote on financial matters. Except where specified otherwise in the Statutes, the decisions of the General Assembly are taken by an absolute majority of votes cast. If the number of votes cast for and against a proposal are equal, the President may use a casting vote in addition to her/his own personal vote.

Article 17. The General Assembly meets in one Ordinary Session every four years, normally on the occasion of an International Congress of History of Science and Technology. If, however, a third or more of the Ordinary Members call for an Extraordinary Session of the General Assembly with a precise agenda relating to questions which, in their opinion, demand immediate consideration, the President shall convene such an Extraordinary Session within six months of receiving formal written notification of their request.

The date and venue of every Session of the General Assembly, with its full agenda, shall be communicated by the Secretary General of the DHST to all Ordinary Members, Sections, Commissions and members of the Council at least three months before the date of the Session.

Any matter requiring a vote of the General Assembly which does not appear on the agenda of the Session may be considered only if a two-thirds majority of votes are cast in favor of the matter being considered; or, in the case of a proposal to modify the Statutes or the Rules of Procedure of the DHST, only if a three-quarters majority of votes are cast in favor of the matter being considered.

Article 18. The General Assembly of the DHST is responsible for:

  1. a) electing the members of the Council and representatives of the DHST on other international organizations;
  2. b) accepting into the DHST new Ordinary Members or bodies seeking Associate Membership (Article 5);
  3. c) appointing, renewing, or dissolving Sections and Commissions;
  4. d) approving the accounts of the DHST and of the Commissions, and the report of the Secretary General on the Council’s activity;
  5. e) establishing the budget of the DHST and fixing the level of subscriptions for the years to follow until the next General Assembly;
  6. f) considering the reports submitted by Ordinary Members, Sections and Commissions, and establishing the programme of activities of the DHST for the years to follow until the next Session of the General Assembly;
  7. g) enacting and amending the Statutes and Rules of Procedure;
  8. h) fixing the date and venue of the next Session.

Article 19. The Council consists of a President, a President-Elect, a First Vice-President, a Second Vice-President, a Secretary General, a Treasurer, an Assistant Secretary General, and from two to six Assessors, all of whom, except the President, who takes office after serving as President-Elect for a four-year term, are elected at a General Assembly and serve for a period of four years starting from the closing of the Session of the General Assembly during which they have been elected.
The President is not eligible for election as President-Elect. The Vice-Presidents are not eligible for re-election to the same office. The Secretary General, Treasurer, Assistant Secretary General and Assessors may not hold the same office for more than eight successive years but, like the Vice-Presidents, remain eligible for re-election to the Council in a different office.

In the event of the President of the DHST being unable to exercise her/his functions, she/he is automatically replaced by the First Vice-President; in which case, the Second Vice-President acquires the status of First Vice-President. In the event of the Secretary General or the Treasurer being unable to exercise her/his functions, the President shall nominate a person to replace her/him in her/his functions and as a member of the Council and its Executive Committee. This nomination requires the approval of a majority of the Council. In the event of the President-Elect becoming unable to envisage taking up the post of President at the following Session of the General Assembly, the Council shall take the necessary steps to ensure that a new President is elected by an extra-ordinary election during that Session of the General Assembly.

Article 20. The Council is responsible for drawing up Rules of Procedure in conformity with these Statutes, and for ensuring the continuity of the DHST’s policies and activities between successive Ordinary Sessions of the General Assembly. It convenes at least once every four years, normally on the occasion of an International Congress History of Science and Technology prior to the General Assembly Session. The Council is validly constituted when a majority of its members are present; at least a two-thirds majority vote by those present is required before decisions with financial implications are considered valid.

Article 21. At least two years before each Ordinary Session of the General Assembly, the Council shall appoint a Nominations Committee for the purpose of drawing up a list of nominations for the next Council. The Chair of the Nominations Committee shall invite all Ordinary Members to submit nominations for Council in writing at least nine months before the date of this Ordinary Session of the General Assembly. Other nominations for Council may nevertheless be submitted in writing to the Secretary General by any Ordinary Member at least forty-eight hours before the midnight which commences the day on which the election is to take place. Election is by secret ballot.

Article 22. The Executive Committee of the Council consists of the President, the President-Elect, the First Vice-President, the Secretary General and the Treasurer. Three of these individuals constitute a quorum. The Executive Committee is charged with the administration of the DHST’s affairs and finances, and the implementation of resolutions taken by the General Assembly and policies of the Council. Notification of a meeting of the Executive Committee, with an agenda, shall be sent by the Secretary General to each member of the Council at least two months before it is scheduled to take place.

 

FINANCES

Article 23. The revenues of the DHST are made up from:

  1. a) subscriptions by Ordinary Members;
  2. b) subsidies from ICSU;
  3. c) other subsidies, gifts and legacies, recognized by law and accepted by the Council;
  4. d) the revenue from the sale of publications.

Article 24. The Treasurer presents to the Executive Committee of the Council each year a report on the state of the finances of the DHST. The Committee examines the report and, upon approval of this report, discharges the Treasurer from responsibility for the year in question.

Article 25. During each Ordinary Session, the General Assembly designates two persons present at the Session whom it charges with verifying the accounts and the financial records for the four years since the last Ordinary Session. These two persons shall present a report during the Ordinary Session, concluding with a recommendation as to whether the accounts should be approved, and whether consequently the Council should be discharged from responsibility for the financial matters of the DHST since the last Ordinary Session. The General Assembly shall consider this report, and decide by vote whether to approve the accounts and discharge the Council for the financial matters of the DHST since the last Ordinary Session.

Article 26. Each Ordinary Member pays the DHST an annual subscription calculated according to the 5 categories: A, B, C, D, E. Depending on the category to which it belongs, an Ordinary Member shall pay an annual subscription of 1, 2, 4, 8, or 16 subscription units respectively. The monetary value of the unit of subscription is fixed by the General Assembly; at which time, each Ordinary Member shall notify the Treasurer or the Secretary General to which category it proposes to belong. The Council has the authority to reject any such proposal if a two-thirds majority of its members considers that the specified category is manifestly inadequate.

Article 27. Each Ordinary Member shall be responsible for the payment of the required subscription. It shall only be permitted to vote at a Session of the General Assembly if it has paid the required subscription for at least three of the four years preceding the year during which that Session is held. If it has neither paid its subscriptions for four consecutive years nor justified its non-payment to the Council, it shall be considered to have resigned from the DHST.

 

GENERAL REMARKS

Article 28. The present Statutes may be modified by the General Assembly only if the total number of votes in favor of the modification proposed is equal to at least two-thirds of the number of votes cast.

Article 29. Proposals formulated by an Ordinary Member for a modification of the Statutes of the IUHPST or of the DHST shall reach the Secretary General at least six months before the date of the Session of the General Assembly during which they are to be considered. The Secretary General shall communicate all proposals to this effect to Ordinary Members, Sections and Commissions, as well as to the members of the Council at least two months before this Session of the General Assembly.

Artic1e 30. In the event of dissolution of the DHST, its assets shall be transferred to one or several international organizations having similar activities.

Any Ordinary Member or Section that leaves the DHST shall forfeit all its rights and privileges in the DHST.

Article 31. These Statutes shall be governed by, and interpreted in accordance with, French law. The English and French texts of these Statutes are equally valid.

 

RULES OF PROCEDURE OF THE DIVISION OF HISTORY OF SCIENCE AND TECHNOLOGY (DHST)
OF THE INTERNATIONAL UNION OF THE HISTORY AND PHILOSOPHY OF SCIENCE AND TECHNOLOGY (IUHPST)
Approved by the General Assembly, Rio de Janeiro, 26 July 2017

 

1. ORGANIZATION AND RESPONSIBILITIES

1.1. The powers and responsibilities of the General Assembly of the DHST are defined in the Statutes. The working languages of the General Assembly are English and French.

1.2. The Council of the DHST, in addition to the obligations defined in the Statutes shall:

  1. a) implement the decisions of the General Assembly, and apply the general policy of the DHST as determined by the General Assembly;
  2. b) receive and report on applications for full or associate membership of the DHST; consider and make recommendations to the General Assembly on proposals for the establishment of Sections and Commissions;
  3. c) ensure that all Ordinary Members receive a statement of the receipts and expenditures incurred during each year, as well as items of information such as reports of past meetings, announcements of forthcoming events, etc.;
  4. d) appoint representatives to scientific and scholarly bodies outside the DHST. Subject to adequate financial support being available, such persons are expected to participate in the business meetings of these bodies and to report back to the Council;
  5. e) report on its activities to the General Assembly.

1.3. The individual responsibilities of the Council members are defined as follows:

  1. a) the President acts as Chair of the DHST’s General Assembly, Council, and Executive Committee. The First Vice-President or another officer present designated by the remaining members of the Council, shall deputize in his/her absence. All decisions which affect the policy and financial activity of the DHST shall be approved by the majority of the Executive Committee. In cases where that Committee is equally divided on a decision of this nature, the President shall have an additional casting vote.
  2. b) the Secretary General or, in her/his absence, another member of the Council acts as Secretary of the General Assembly, Council, and Executive Committee. Under the authority of the President, she/he is responsible for conducting the ordinary business of the DHST, and keeping its records. The Secretary General and the Assistant Secretary General shall be responsible for the official website of the DHST. The Secretary General shall prepare the agenda and is responsible for the Minutes of the Sessions of the General Assembly and the meetings of the Council and the Executive Committee.
  3. c) the Treasurer is responsible for the financial administration of the DHST, and for keeping its accounts.
  4. d) the other members of the Council have the right to vote on all proposals; unless the Council decides otherwise they have no permanent responsibilities.

1.4. The Scientific Sections have no responsibility to the DHST other than those specified in Article 6 of its Statutes.

1.5. Funds made available by the Council to Commissions and Sections shall be administered by each of these bodies independently, for purposes consistent with the aims specified in Article 1 of the Statutes. A financial statement of all expenditures of such funds incurred during each year together with all relevant receipts shall be submitted to the Treasurer and Secretary General of the DHST on or before a date notified by the Treasurer and Secretary General. Only in cases where the Council has given prior approval shall payments be made towards travelling expenses of the officers of Commissions and Sections as well as members of the Council.

 

2. NOMINATIONS, ELECTIONS AND VOTES

2.1. A valid nomination for the Council shall consist of a brief written statement of nomination from at least one Ordinary Member, a one-page Curriculum Vitae of the nominee, and a letter from the nominee confirming willingness to serve in the post for which she/he is nominated. The Nominations Committee (Article 21 of the Statutes) shall verify the validity of the nominations it receives. It shall use its best endeavors to ensure that it receives at least two nominations for each elective office, and that the nominations have regard to the principles of gender balance and cultural diversity enunciated in Article 1.e. of the Statutes. For this purpose it shall if necessary solicit further nominations from Ordinary Members, and suggestions from Sections and Commissions, until no later than four months before each Ordinary Session of the General Assembly. It shall then have the list of valid nominations, with the mention of the nominating Ordinary Member or Members for each nomination, dispatched to Ordinary Members, Sections and Commissions, as well as to the members of the Council through the Secretary General no later than three months before each Ordinary Session of the General Assembly.

2.2. The Secretary General shall communicate the final list of candidates for all posts to Ordinary Members, Sections and Commissions, as well as members of the Council, by noon on the day following the expiry of the deadline for nominations by Ordinary Members (Article 21 of the Statutes).

2.3. Before voting for the election of Council members begins, the President shall call for the nomination of three scrutineers by Members of the General Assembly. Each nomination shall be made by at least two members of the General Assembly. The nominations shall be approved by a vote of the General Assembly. No candidate for an elected office may be a scrutineer. After each vote the scrutineers shall check the validity of all ballots received and count the number of votes for each candidates and also the number of invalid ballots. They shall then report in writing to the President, who shall announce the results to the General Assembly.

The votes for electing the President-Elect, Vice-President, Secretary General, Treasurer, Assistant Secretary General and Assessors shall be conducted separately and by secret ballot. Except in the case of assessors, an absolute majority of the votes cast shall be required for election. If the election is not achieved after two ballots, the candidate receiving the smallest number of votes in the second ballot shall be removed from the list. This procedure shall be repeated until a result is obtained. Any ballot form showing votes for more than one name shall be invalid.

In general, the election of assessors shall take place through a single ballot. Each voter makes a mark against the names of a number of candidates, which number must not be greater than the number of assessor posts to be filled; ballots with marks exceeding this number are invalid. The scrutineers then list candidates in descending order of the number of votes they obtain. The candidates occupying the number of places at the top of the list equal to the number of posts to be filled are declared elected. If it is not possible to make a choice of the candidate elected with the lowest number of votes because two or more candidates have this number of votes, one or more further ballots shall be held for those candidates following the procedure for the other offices laid down in this article.

Any problem arising during balloting shall be resolved by a ruling from the President of the DHST. Any challenge to the President’s ruling shall be made orally at the time the ruling is given. The challenger shall state her or his objection and propose an alternative ruling, and the President shall then reply. During this discussion, which shall last no more than ten minutes, the First Vice-President shall act as chair. If the objection has not been withdrawn after ten minutes have elapsed, a vote shall be taken and the President’s ruling shall be declared upheld unless at least two thirds of those voting vote in favor of the challenge.

2.4. A proposal or motion not included in the agenda of a Session can only be submitted to discussion and vote of the General Assembly if it is proposed by at least two Members of the General Assembly. The minutes of all Sessions shall record all such proposals and motions, with the names of the members who proposed them and the number of votes cast in favor and against each proposal or motion, in the same way that they shall record all votes concerning matters mentioned on the agenda.

2.5. The English and French texts of these Rules of Procedure are equally valid. Any dispute arising over the interpretation of the Statutes and Rules of Procedure of the DHST during a Session of the General Assembly shall be decided by a ruling of the President. Any challenge to the President’s ruling in this case shall be made according to the procedure laid down in Rule 2.3. Any dispute arising over the interpretation of the Statutes and Rules of Procedure during the period between two Sessions of the General Assembly shall be decided by the Council.