CONSTITUTION AND STANDING ORDERS OF THE INTER VARSITY FOLK DANCE FESTIVAL
This document presents the constitution as adopted at IVFDF 2004 in Exeter it and was proiduced following discussions and amendments in the Sheffield constitution meeting of October 2003. It has its roots in the recommendations made by IVFDF 2003 in Sheffield and in the Braceborough meeting of 2001. Andrew Swaine, of Cambridge, must be thanked for his efforts in pulling together this project and bringing IVFDF into a new era. Explanatory notes in the form of an Addendum are available to provide clarity and further information on the points below.
- 1. NAME
- 1.1. The name of the association shall be "The Inter Varsity Folk Dance Festival", also known as IVFDF.
- 2. AIMS AND OBJECTIVES
- 2.1. IVFDF exists to promote knowledge, understanding and enjoyment of the traditions of the folk dance and music of the British Isles and beyond, especially to students and young people.
- 2.2. This shall be achieved by supporting Festivals running events such as dances, workshops and displays, targeted at but not limited to university students.
- 2.3. The association shall not discriminate on the grounds of race, sex, age, disability, sexual orientation, religion or political views.
- 3. MEMBER SOCIETIES
- 3.1. A group shall become Member Society of the association if:
- 3.1.1. It is a folk group which is recognised and supported by a British University.
- 3.1.2. At least two members of the society which are students at a British University are in attendance at a Festival. Each student can only count for one Member Society for this purpose.
- 3.1.3. It registers its intention to join at the Festival, giving electronic mail contact details for the list specified in section 10.2.6, university affiliation and the names of the two students specified in section 3.1.2.
- 3.2. Each Member Society shall have the option to renew its membership at each Annual Representatives Meeting (ARM) with the secretary of the ARM, providing that the conditions in section 3.1 still hold.
- 3.3. Member Societies must notify the Archivist as soon as practically possible of any change in contact details.
- 3.4. Membership shall be withdrawn from a Member Society if:
- 3.4.1. It fails to renew its membership for two consecutive ARMs.
- 3.4.2. It notifies the Archivist that it wishes to revoke its membership.
- 3.4.3. It ceases to meet the criteria in section 3.1.1.
- 3.4.4. It cannot be contacted due to failing to adhere to section 3.3.
- 4. AUTHORITY
- 4.1. Decisions for the association shall be made by a vote in a Representatives Meeting (RM) as specified in section 5, or an Electronic Vote (EV) as specified in section 8. Such decisions are hereafter referred to as decisions of the Representatives.
- 4.2. Where specified, a quorum shall require:
- 4.2.1. If the association has 9 or more Member Societies, representatives from one third of all Member Societies, rounding up; otherwise if the association has 3 or more Member Societies, representatives from 3 Member Societies; otherwise representatives from all Member Societies.
- 4.2.2. Representatives from Member Societies from three different universities where such Member Societies exist; otherwise representatives from a Member Society from each university with a Member Society.
- 4.3. The Representatives may make or modify the Standing Orders of the association by an ordinary vote, where they are not in conflict with the constitution.
- 5. REPRESENTATIVES MEETINGS
- 5.1. An RM is defined as either an Annual Representatives Meeting (ARM) or an Extraordinary Representatives Meeting (ERM), run in accordance with the Standing Orders.
- 5.2. Each Member Society may choose up to two of its members present at the RM to have voting rights at the RM, hereafter referred to as Voting Members. The RM Chair may not be a Voting Member.
- 5.3. Decisions may only be taken if the Voting Members form a quorum as defined in section 4.2.
- 5.4. Voting Members, the RM Chair, the RM Secretary, Officers, up to two members of each active Festival Committee and any others specified in the Standing Orders shall have right of attendance. Others may be permitted to attend the RM at the discretion of the RM Chair.
- 5.5. Votes shall be cast by simple majority of an open show of hands of the Voting Members. In the event of a tie,
In the event of a tie, the RM Chair shall have a casting vote.
- 5.6. The RM Secretary shall record minutes of the meeting and compile a list of Member Societies present, and make them available to all members of the electronic mail list specified in section 10.2.6 within one calendar month of the meeting. The Archivist shall store these records on behalf of IVFDF.
- 6. ANNUAL REPRESENTATIVES MEETING
- 6.1. An Annual Representatives Meeting (ARM) shall be held at each Festival.
- 6.2. The current Festival Committee shall take all reasonable steps to make all Member Societies present at the Festival, and all societies eligible to be Member Societies, aware of the ARM and their right of attendance.
- 6.3. The current Festival Committee shall appoint the RM Chair and RM Secretary, who need not otherwise have right of attendance as defined in section 5.4.
- 6.4. The ARM shall as a minimum:
- 6.4.1. Provisionally appoint, from one or more bids from potential Festival Committees, a Festival Committee to run a Festival in two years time. If no bids are received then the ARM shall take all necessary steps to ensure a Festival Committee is appointed as soon as possible, and in any case before the next ARM.
- 6.4.2. Confirm, subject to section 9.4, the previously appointed Festival Committee to run the next Festival. If otherwise support for the previously appointed Festival Committee is withdrawn and a new Festival Committee chosen, confirmation shall be given immediately or as soon as is possible, the current Festival Committee calling an ERM or EV if required to achieve this.
- 6.4.3. Elect the Officers as required in section 10.
- 6.5. If an ARM has not been held for 14 months the Treasurer shall call an ARM as soon as practically possible, giving at least one calendar month's notice to the electronic mailing list specified in section 10.2.6 of the time, venue and provisional agenda of the ARM.
- 6.5.1. The Treasurer shall appoint the RM Chair and RM Secretary, who need not otherwise have right of attendance as defined in section 5.4.
- 6.5.2. The Treasurer may use IVFDF funds to cover reasonable costs for holding the meeting, subject to section 11.1.
- 7. EXTRAORDINARY REPRESENTATIVES MEETING
- 7.1. An Extraordinary Representatives Meeting (ERM) may be called by either:
- 7.1.1. Five Member Societies from at least three different universities.
- 7.1.2. Sufficient Member Societies to form a quorum as defined in section 4.2.
- 7.2. The ERM shall be hosted by one of the Member Societies which called the ERM.
- 7.3. At least one calendar month's notice must be given by the host of the ERM to the electronic mailing list specified in section 10.2.6 of the time, venue, and provisional agenda of the ERM, as decided by the host of the ERM.
- 7.4. The host of the ERM shall appoint a chair and secretary for the meeting, who need not otherwise have right of attendance as defined in section 5.4.
- 8. ELECTRONIC VOTING
- 8.1. Any Member Society may call an EV with the support required for calling an ERM as specified in section 7.1 by notifying the electronic mailing list specified in section 10.2.6.
- 8.2. Each Member Society may choose up to two of its members to have voting rights in an EV, hereafter referred to as Voting Members.
- 8.3. The EV shall be conducted in accordance with the Standing Orders by a Returning Officer.
- 8.3.1. The returning Officer shall be one of the following, in order of preference, depending on availability: the Archivist, the Treasurer, other officers defined by the Standing Orders in order of definition. Anyone serving on an active Festival Committee or with a conflict of interest shall be deemed unavailable for this purpose if another Officer is available.
- 8.4. The Returning Officer shall give notice of the proposal(s) to the electronic mailing list specified in section 10.2.6, appending the entirety of section 8 of the constitution and any Standing Orders governing the conduct of EVs.
- 8.5. At least three weeks shall be allowed following notification of the proposal(s) to allow discussion of the proposal(s) to take place.
- 8.5.1. Member Societies must inform the Returning Officer of its Voting Members during the discussion period.
- 8.5.2. Proposals may be altered during the discussion period in whole or in part by the Member Society which called the EV at the discretion of the Returning Officer.
- 8.5.3. Proposals may be withdrawn by the Member Society which called the EV by notifying the Returning Officer during the discussion period.
- 8.6. Once the discussion period is over the Return Officer shall then send an e-mail to the list indicating the opening of voting and confirming the proposal(s), listing the Voting Members and the duration of the vote, which shall be not less than one week.
- 8.6.1. Each Voting Member may vote by sending an e-mail with their vote to the Returning Officer.
- 8.6.2. The Returning Officer may not vote.
- 8.6.3. Votes, once cast, cannot be changed.
- 8.7. Once voting is closed, the Returning Officer shall send an e-mail to the list indicating the result of the vote, and listing the people who voted, the way they voted and their affiliation. The e-mail shall also indicate the duration of a period to allow the validity of the votes cast to be disputed, which shall be not less than one week.
- 8.7.1. The vote shall be void unless those from whom valid votes are received form a quorum as defined in section 4.2.
- 8.7.2. In the event of a tie, the vote shall be declared not carried.
- 8.7.3. If the Returning Officer believes that the outcome of the vote has been jeopardised by procedures not being properly followed, he/she shall declare the vote void. The Returning Officer's decision in this is final.
- 8.8. Once the dispute period is over, the Returning Officer shall send a final e-mail to the list announcing the validity of the vote and/or the result.
- 8.9. The Returning Officer shall keep all relevant correspondence, including votes cast, until the end of the dispute period.
- 8.10. The Archivist shall record the proposal(s), summary of votes and result.
- 9. FESTIVAL
- 9.1. Each Festival Committee is subject to the obligations stated in the Standing Orders.
- 9.2. Each Festival Committee must provide the Archivist with up to date contact details for at least two of its members, including electronic mail contact details for the list specified in section 10.2.6.
- 9.3. A Festival Committee may change its officers or membership without the approval of the Representatives subject to section 9.2.
- 9.4. Appointment of a Festival Committee to run a Festival is provisional until confirmed by the Representatives, on or after the ARM of the preceding Festival. In the event that the Representatives do not have confidence in the ability of an unconfirmed Festival Committee to run a successful Festival, or a Festival Committee indicates it is unable to host its Festival, the Representatives may, with a two-thirds majority, withdraw support for that Festival Committee and provisionally appoint a new Festival Committee to run the Festival instead.
- 9.5. A Festival Committee shall be deemed to be active from being first appointed to run a Festival, and cease to be active following the closure of all accounts and fulfillment of all obligations to the association, or immediately if support is withdrawn under section 9.4.
- 10. OFFICERS
- 10.1. The Treasurer:
- 10.1.1. Shall be elected for a three-year term at the ARM, renewable every three years.
- 10.1.2. Shall not be a member of any active Festival Committee while he/she holds the post.
- 10.1.3. May not be a Voting Member in an RM or EV.
- 10.1.4. Shall hold central IVFDF funds in one or more bank accounts distinct from any Festival Committee.
- 10.1.5. Shall make and receive payments to/from Festival Committees and other organisations as directed by the Representatives.
- 10.1.6. Shall prepare and present a financial report at each ARM.
- 10.1.7. Shall represent IVFDF when required.
- 10.1.8. Shall not hold the post for a total of more than 9 consecutive years.
- 10.2. The Archivist:
- 10.2.1. Shall be elected for a three-year term at the ARM, renewable every three years.
- 10.2.2. Shall maintain the constitution.
- 10.2.3. Shall maintain the list of Member Societies as collected by the secretary of each ARM.
- 10.2.4. Shall store relevant records on behalf of IVFDF as required.
- 10.2.5. Shall make records held on behalf of IVFDF available to Member Societies and active Festival Committees on request.
- 10.2.6. Shall maintain an electronic mailing list for distributing information, to include contacts for each Member Society, active Festival Committee, and Officers. Other interested parties may be included at the discretion of the Archivist.
- 10.2.7. Shall not hold the post for a total of more than 9 consecutive years.
- 10.3. The Standing Orders of the association may specify additional Officers and additional responsibilities for the Officers named in this section.
- 10.4. Officers may delegate duties at their discretion unless otherwise directed by the Representatives, but maintain responsibility for ensuring that they are adequately performed.
- 10.5. In the event that an Officer's post becomes vacant, the remaining Officers shall nominate a replacement to serve until the next ARM. The replacement must be promptly announced on the electronic mailing list specified in section 10.2.6.
- 10.6. The Representatives may, with a two-thirds majority, remove any Officer from office by a vote of no confidence and elect a replacement.
- 10.7. Officers must provide the Archivist with up to date contact details, including electronic mail contact details for the list specified in section 10.2.6.
- 11. FINANCES
- 11.1. The Representatives shall not make such obligations that could cause it to come into debt, for example by offering a greater sum in underwriting than its total assets.
- 11.2. Withdrawals from central funds shall require two signatures. Signatories shall include: the Treasurer and two persons nominated by the Representatives for this purpose. Except in exceptional circumstances, the Treasurer will be expected to provide one of the signatures.
- 12. DISSOLUTION
- 12.1. If a Festival does not take place in any period of twenty-eight consecutive calendar months, then IVFDF shall be said to be dissolved, when the following shall be enacted:
- 12.1.1. All property and assets of IVFDF, including debts owed by Festival Committees, shall be converted into money and collected together.
- 12.1.2. All debts and liabilities of IVFDF shall be settled immediately with this money.
- 12.1.3. The remaining sum, being credit or debit, shall be shared equally between all groups that were Member Societies at the end of the last Festival.
- 13. CONSTITUTION
- 13.1. This constitution may be altered in whole or in part by the assenting vote of at least two-thirds of the Voting Members present at a properly constituted RM.
Proposals for alterations to the constitution must be raised for discussion to the electronic mailing list specified in 10.2.6, giving at least three calendar months notice. Final changes must be made available in the same way at least one calendar month before the RM.
- 13.3. Proposals may be made by any group qualified to call an ERM as defined in section 7.1.
- 13.4. Proposals which have been properly notified shall form part of the agenda of the next properly constituted RM that takes place. If the constitution is successfully modified, a copy of the updated constitution shall be presented to the Archivist by the secretary of the RM within one calendar month of the RM.
- 13.5. Proposals may be altered in whole or part as a result of discussion at an RM, but only matters raised with due notice may be discussed. The RM shall also have the power to make any other changes to the constitution which may be required as a knock-on effect of proposals for alterations.
- 1. ANNUAL REPRESENTATIVES MEETING
- 1.1. The agenda for the ARM shall include:
- 1.1.1. Reports from any Festival Committees still active at the last ARM not covered elsewhere.
- 1.1.2. Outgoing report by the Festival Committee which ran the last Festival.
- 1.1.3. Report by the current Festival Committee.
- 1.1.4. Treasurer's Report.
- 1.1.5. Archivist's Report.
- 1.1.6. Development Officer's Report.
- 1.1.7. Next Festival:
- 18.104.22.168. Report by the Festival Committee appointed to run the next Festival, including budget, status of venues, publicity and schedule.
- 22.214.171.124. Report by the Lead External Adviser for the next Festival.
- 126.96.36.199. Confirmation or otherwise of the next Festival as specified in section 6.4.2 of the constitution.
- 188.8.131.52. Decisions on provisional offers of grants and loans to the next Festival.
- 184.108.40.206. Offers of underwriting to the next Festival.
- 1.1.8. The Festival in two years time:
- 220.127.116.11. Provisional appointment of a Festival Committee to run a Festival in two years time as specified in section 5.3.1 of the constitution.
Appointment of a Lead External Adviser and at least one Assistant External Adviser to oversee the appointed Festival Committee.
- 18.104.22.168. Immediate offers of loans to be paid as soon as a balanced budget and request for payment is submitted to both the Treasurer and Lead External Adviser. Any such payment is automatic and not subject to budgetary approval.
- 22.214.171.124. Provisional offers of grants and loans subject to confirmation at the following ARM.
- 1.1.9. Setting of budgets required for Officers and External Advisers to carry out their duties.
- 1.1.10. Election of Officers as specified in section 5 of these Standing Orders and in section 6.4.3 of the constitution.
- 1.2. All documents for the ARM must be available on request from the start of the festival, and where possible at least one calendar month before the festival.
- 1.3. When registering membership with the secretary, Member Societies shall, where possible, indicate:
- 1.3.1. Changes to contact details.
- 1.3.2. Approximate number of members, student and non-student, attending the Festival and in total.
- 1.3.3. Principal activities undertaken by the society.
- 1.4. The ARM shall be held so as to give time for it to be reconvened later in the Festival should no bids be received for the Festival in two years time.
- 1.5. It is requested but not required that Member Societies nominate students to represent them as Voting Members where possible.
- 2. EXTRAORDINARY REPRESENTATIVES MEETING
- 2.1. The costs of an ERM shall be borne equally by the Member Societies attending.
- 3. FESTIVAL COMMITTEE OBLIGATIONS
- 3.1. The Festival shall be run in a weekend during February and the first two weeks of March.
- 3.2. The constitution of the Festival Committee shall state that IVFDF is not liabile for any debt or other obligations arising from the Festival except where agreed by the Representatives.
- 3.3. All property and assets of each Festival shall be vested in the Festival Committee, in whose names all transactions of the Festival shall be carried out. They shall hold themselves liable, on behalf of the Festival, for all proceedings undertaken for or against the Festival in any Court of Law, and shall indemnify themselves against the assets of the Festival for any liabilities incurred therein.
- 3.4. The Festival Committee shall take out public liability insurance of at least 1 million pounds liability appropriate to cover the Festival.
- 3.5. The constitution of the Festival Committee shall include statements on aims and discrimination compatible with section 2 of the constitution.
- 3.6. The Festival Committee shall compile a report following the Festival, and present this report to the Archivist within three calendar months of the end of the Festival. The report shall include:
- 3.6.1. A list of Member Societies with at least two student members who attended the Festival.
- 3.6.2. Current accounts, audited by the Lead External Adviser.
- 3.6.3. Attendance figures.
- 3.6.4. Details of applications for funding or sponsorship, and the outcomes of those applications.
- 3.6.5. Constitution of the Festival Committee.
- 3.6.6. Contact details for individuals and organisations that may be useful for future Festival Committees.
- 3.6.7. Advice and lessons learned that may be useful for future Festival Committees.
- 3.7. The Festival Committee shall return at least half of any profits they make to central funds.
- 4. EXTERNAL ADVISERS
A Lead External Adviser and at least one Assistant External Adviser shall be appointed to oversee each Festival Committee, as described in section 126.96.36.199. The External Advisers are appointed for their experience in running a Festival and the Lead External Adviser must have sat on an IVFDF Festival Committee within the last 10 years on appointment.
- 4.2. External Advisers shall have right of attendance at RMs.
- 4.3. Each Festival Committee shall report to their Lead External Adviser at least once every four calendar months, indicating progress on budget, venues, publicity, action plans and anything else that may be requested. This requirement continues until the Festival Committee ceases to be active according to section 9.5 of the constitution.
- 4.4. The External Advisers shall give such advice and assistance as is necessary, welcome and practical to ensure the successful running of the Festival, and alert the Member Societies if he/she believes that the Festival is at risk of failure via the electronic mailing list specified in section 10.2.6 of the constitution.
- 4.5. The Lead External Adviser shall report to the ARM, and ERMs as requested, on the progress of the Festival Committee and highlight any concerns that he/she may have. The RM shall consider this information when deciding whether to confirm the Festival Committee and to confirm underwriting support.
- 4.6. The External Advisers for a Festival Committee can be changed in the same way as any Officer as specified in section 10.6 of the constitution.
- 4.7. External Advisers shall not be liable for any financial debt or other obligation of the Festival.
- 4.8. External Advisers must provide the Archivist with up to date contact details, including electronic mail contact details for the list specified in section 10.2.6 of the constitution.
- 4.9. External Advisers must respect the confidentiality wishes of the Festival Committee where this does not conflict with alerting Member Societies of the risk of failure of the Festival as specified in section 4.4.
- 5. OFFICERS
- 5.1. The Archivist in addition to his duties specified in section 10.2 of the constitution:
- 5.1.1. Shall maintain a web site at www.ivfdf.org, which shall as a minimum:
- 188.8.131.52. Link to the web pages of forthcoming Festivals where available.
- 184.108.40.206. Advertise IVFDF in general.
- 220.127.116.11. Make records held on behalf of IVFDF available as far as is practical. Section 10.2.4 of the constitution shall be deemed to be satisfied for such records.
- 5.1.2. Shall make adequate provision for the recovery of copies of key records in the event of theft, computer failure, fire, flood or other similar event, such records to include the contents of www.ivfdf.org, the membership of firstname.lastname@example.org, the current constitution, the list of Member Societies, all contact details held and any other electronic records.
- 5.1.3. Shall maintain an e-mail list called email@example.com, for the purposes specified in section
- 10.2.6 of the constitution. All External Advisers must be included in this list.
- 5.1.4. Shall administer and maintain registration of the internet domains ivfdf.org and ivfdf.org.uk on behalf of IVFDF. Approval is granted to use IVFDF funds to pay registration fees required for this purpose.
- 5.1.5. Shall prepare and present a report at each ARM.
- 5.1.6. Shall nominate at at least one person as a deputy, deposit the contact details of the deputy/deputies with the Treasurer, and ensure that the deputy/deputies have the full the rights and knowledge to maintain the web site, e-mail list, domain registration and any other electronic services provided on behalf of IVFDF, in case such maintenance is required and the Archivist is unavailable.
- 5.2. The Development Officer:
- 5.2.1. Shall be elected annually at the ARM.
- 5.2.2. Shall coordinate the long-term advertising policy between festivals.
- 5.2.3. Shall promote student folk activities, maintaining a list of known groups and individuals.
- 5.2.4. Shall encourage said groups and individuals who do not normally attended IVFDF to attend, or attend in greater numbers.
- 5.2.5. Shall prepare and present a report at each ARM.