Constitution

The constitution of the British Forum for Ethnomusicology incorporating all changes approved at or before the 1992 Annual Business Meeting, the change of name approved at the 1995 Annual Business Meeting and subsequently confirmed by ballot of all members, and changes agreed at the 2007, 2009, 2011 and 2012 AGMs

RULE ONE: NAME

The association, formerly known as International Council for Traditional Music (UK Chapter), shall be called British Forum for Ethnomusicology, hereinafter BFE or 'the association'.

RULE TWO: OBJECTS

The association shall exist to advance education and research into music and related fields that reflect the range of interests of the body and to carry out the spirit of rule five (that of Affiliated National Committee) of the Constitution of the International Council for Traditional Music. For those purposes and not otherwise BFE shall have power:

  • to provide a forum in which interested persons may share in the findings of research and engage in debate, by arranging meetings, discussions and other activities;
  • to provide an official link for individual members of BFE with the ICTM and to submit reports of its activities to the ICTM;
  • to organise an annual conference in the UK;
  • to co-operate with other bodies in the UK and elsewhere having similar objects to those of BFE;
  • to encourage and assist work in the field of music and related research that reflects the interests of members of BFE;
  • to publish regularly a scholarly journal (hereinafter called 'the Journal') and to issue regular e-news for members and non-members;
  • to do all such things as will further the objects of BFE.

RULE THREE: MEMBERSHIP

BFE is a body fiscally autonomous from any other organisation, and membership shall be open to anyone interested in music research as outlined in rule two.

Annual subscriptions for individual members shall be sums as shall from time to time be fixed by the Committee. Unwaged and student members shall be entitled to a reduced fee. Membership shall entitle each member:

  • to attend the Annual Business Meeting and any Extraordinary Business Meetings as may from time to time be called;
  • to vote on all motions (including election of Committee members) put forward at any Business Meeting or Extraordinary Business Meeting (this includes voting by digital or postal means if so decided by the Committee) as specified under Rules Seven, Twelve and Thirteen;
  • to attend BFE conferences at a preferential rate;
  • to receive one copy of each issue of the Journal.

RULE FOUR: ADMISSION OF MEMBERS AND NON-PAYMENT OF SUBSCRIPTIONS

Members whose subscriptions have expired and are not renewed shall be removed from BFE membership but may rejoin should they wish to do so at a future date.

RULE FIVE: CANCELLATION OF MEMBERSHIP

The Committee may cancel the membership of any member who in its opinion brings BFE into disrepute or works against the interests of BFE, but in such a case the unexpired portion of their subscription will be returned to them. The Committee may also decline to allow any such member to renew their membership and shall give that person notice in writing of its decision to do so. All such decisions must be presented for confirmation at the next annual Business Meeting of BFE, where the said person may appeal.

RULE SIX: MANAGEMENT

BFE shall be managed (except as otherwise provided by these rules) by a Committee, all of whom shall be appointed or elected as hereinafter provided.

RULE SEVEN: THE COMMITTEE

The Committee shall consist of eight elected members and up to four co-opted members. The election date shall normally be the day before the annual Business Meeting but will be announced to all members at least two months in advance. The procedure for election of the eight members shall be as follows:

i) A call for nominations will be issued at least two calendar months prior to the election date. Nominations will be accepted up to one calendar month before the election date (the precise date will be specified in the call for nominations). Nominated candidates should prepare a short written statement and nominations should include the names of a proposer and seconder.

ii) In the case of there being more candidates for election than places available, membership shall be determined by vote. (Otherwise all candidates shall be deemed to have been elected.) In such a case, immediately after the close of nominations the Committee shall send all members a list of candidates along with their written statements.

iii) Members may then vote by digital, postal or other means specified by the Committee, and all votes received before midnight on the election date will be valid.

Those elected shall serve for a term of three years and may seek re-election immediately upon expiry of that term. There is no limit on the number of terms which may be served, whether consecutively or in total. 
 

The Committee shall have the power to co-opt up to four additional members for periods not exceeding two years. Such co-opted members may then be nominated and elected to Committee, but no individual may serve as a co-opted member for more than four years in any six-year period.

RULE EIGHT: OFFICE BEARERS

The Committee shall appoint its own officers which shall be Chair, Secretary, Conference Organiser, Treasurer, News Editor and other such posts as it deems necessary from amongst members and co-opted members.

RULE NINE: VACANCIES ON COMMITTEE OR IN OTHER OFFICES

In the event of a vacancy occurring on the Committee, the Committee shall have power to appoint a member of BFE to fill such a vacancy. The person so invited may then stand for election  on the next occasion that Committee elections are held.

RULE TEN: MEETINGS OF THE COMMITTEE

The Committee shall meet at such times as are necessary to carry on efficiently the business of BFE. Four members of the Committee of whom one should be an office bearer shall form a quorum. The Committee shall meet no less than twice a year.

RULE ELEVEN: DUTIES OF THE COMMITTEE

The Committee shall discharge all business appertaining to activities of BFE and shall carry out the business of BFE.

RULE TWELVE: BUSINESS MEETING

At the Business Meeting to be held at the Annual Conference the Committee shall determine the following purposes:-

  • to receive from the Chair a report of the work of the Committee;
  • to receive from the Treasurer a balance sheet and statement of accounts for the preceding year;
  • to appoint an honorary Auditor;
  • to elect members to fill vacancies on the Committee;
  • to decide on any resolutions or items of business submitted to the meeting;*
  • to decide on such amendments to the rules as appear necessary;*
  • to receive a report from the Journal Editor;
  • to receive a report from the Conference Organiser or Conference Team;
  • to conduct any other business that may occur.*

A member wishing to move any Resolution at a Business Meeting shall give notices of it in writing to the Secretary no less than a calendar month before the meeting.

* Decisions on any resolutions or items of business, or on amendments to the rules, or the conducting of any other business may also occur outside of the Business Meeting, with all members who so wish voting either by digital or postal means.

RULE THIRTEEN: EXTRAORDINARY GENERAL BUSINESS MEETING

The Committee may at any time for any special purpose call an Extraordinary Business Meeting, and it shall forthwith do so by writing to inform all members stating clearly the purpose for which the meeting is required with no less than one calendar month notice.

RULE FOURTEEN: CONVENING OF BUSINESS MEETINGS

These shall be held at the Annual Conference, and members shall be given notice of the meeting no less than one calendar month in advance, and an agenda shall be given to every member who is in attendance at the conference.

RULE FIFTEEN: PROCEEDINGS AT BUSINESS AND OTHER MEETINGS

At all such meetings the person elected Chair or in their absence a Committee member chosen by the Committee shall take the Chair. Ten members in addition to those who are members of the Committee shall form a quorum. The Committee shall be empowered, if it thinks fit, to enable those members who are unable to attend in person to vote in writing.

RULE SIXTEEN: AUDIT AND PRESENTATION OF ACCOUNTS

The General Account of BFE shall be administered by the Treasurer under the advice of the Committee.

The accounts shall be presented at the annual Business Meeting and shall as soon as possible be audited by a suitable person (not being a member of the Committee) appointed from those present at the Business Meeting. The accounts may be viewed by any member not present at the Business Meeting upon request to the Treasurer.

RULE SEVENTEEN: PAYMENT TO MEMBERS

No Committee member shall receive remuneration from BFE, but they may be eligible to be re-imbursed for reasonable out-of-pocket expenses properly incurred in advancing the objects of BFE upon agreement of the Committee, providing there are funds available in BFE account.

RULE EIGHTEEN: ACTIVITIES

The Committee shall have power, at its discretion, to promote any activity necessary or desirable for managing the affairs of BFE or for furthering its objects and can allocate money for such purposes should such funds be available when application is made and the whole Committee in favour of such support by a two-thirds majority.

RULE NINETEEN: INTERPRETATION OF THE RULES

The Committee shall be the sole authority for the interpretation of these rules, and the decision of the Committee upon any question of interpretation or upon any matter affecting BFE and not provided for by these rules shall be final and binding on members.

RULE TWENTY: AMENDMENT OF RULES

These rules may be added to, repealed or amended at any Business Meeting or Extraordinary Business Meeting provided that no such Resolution shall be deemed to have passed unless it be carried by a majority of at least two-thirds of those members voting thereon. Notice of any proposed alteration in Rules shall be made in writing and sent to the Secretary no less than one calendar month before the meeting at which it is to be proposed. No amendment or appeal shall be made to the objects, to this clause or to the dissolution clause. No amendment shall be made elsewhere in the Rules which would cause BFE to cease to be a charity in Law.

RULE TWENTY-ONE: LIABILITY OF MEMBERS

The maximum liability of members of BFE (whether or not members of Committee) shall be limited to an amount not exceeding one year's subscription.

RULE TWENTY-TWO: CONDUCT OF MEMBERS

Members of BFE are expected to show due courtesy and civility to all other members, including the Committee. A member who chooses to disregard this may be regarded as working against the interests of the organisation. 

RULE TWENTY-THREE: DISSOLUTION OF BFE

If at any Business Meeting a Resolution is passed to wind up BFE by a majority of those attending, it shall then be laid before an Extraordinary Business Meeting which shall be convened no less than one calendar month later. If this Extraordinary Business Meeting, at which no less than half the members are present, confirms the Resolution by a two-thirds majority, the Committee shall thereupon, or at any future date as shall be specified in such Resolution aforesaid, return any articles upon loan and, after discharge from the funds of BFE of all liabilities, divide the remaining assets among such charitable research organisations or charities involved in music research and education as the Committee shall decide, and when such assets have been divided as aforesaid, BFE shall be dissolved

RULE TWENTY-FOUR: PUBLICATION OF CONSTITUTION

A copy of the BFE constitution is available on the BFE website.