27th General Assembly of IUPAP (2011) - STATUTES


(as adopted by the General Assembly - 2011)


  1. The mission of IUPAP is to assist in the worldwide development of physics, to foster international cooperation in physics, and to help in the application of physics toward solving problems of concern to humanity.
  2. IUPAP carries out this mission by sponsoring international meetings; fostering communications and publications; encouraging research and education; fostering the free circulation of scientists; promoting international agreements on symbols, units and nomenclature; and cooperating with other organizations on disciplinary and interdisciplinary problems.


  1. The Members of IUPAP are communities of physicists engaged in independent scientific activity each within a definite territory and listed under a name that avoids any misunderstanding about the territory represented. The word "territory" does not imply any political position on the part of the Union which seeks to assist physicists everywhere in carrying out its mission.
  2. A Member adheres to the Union through an appropriate body: either its principal scientific academy, or its national research council, or any other institution or association of institutions representing its broad physics community or, failing these, its government.
  3. The Adhering Body will set up a Liaison Committee to maintain relations between its physics community and the Union. These Liaison Committees will, within their respective communities, encourage and promote the aims of the Union. An Adhering Body through its Liaison Committee designates its Delegates to the General Assemblies of the Union and a Delegation Head.
  4. The Union may accept as Observers, regional physical societies and other international physics organizations. Observers may be invited to send a representative to Council meetings and General Assemblies but have no voting privileges.


  1. The General Assembly is the highest governing body of the Union. It:
    1. Creates and amends these Statutes (requires a two-thirds majority of those present.)
    2. Sets and amends the procedural By-laws (requires a three-fifths majority of those present).
    3. Elects the Executive Council that oversees Union activities between General Assemblies.
    4. Elect members of its Commissions.
    5. Sets the members dues.
  2. The General Assembly may:
    1. Set policy.
    2. Establish or disestablish Commissions that are assigned specific tasks in their charter, and elect their members,
    3. Recognize a group of scientists outside of the Union as an Affiliated Commission,
    4. Decide to participate in interdisciplinary or other international scientific bodies.
    5. Accept new members.
  3. The General Assembly meets every three years. The Council will call special meetings at the request of one-third of the members, or at its own request.
  4. The President presides over the General Assembly. The Secretary-General is responsible for making a record of all activities.
  5. Election procedures are specified in the By-laws.
  6. A quorum of the General Assembly consists of sufficient members to produce two-thirds of all votes.


  1. An Executive Council (the Council) oversees and administers the activities of the Union between General Assembly meetings. It normally meets at least once per year.
  2. The Council is composed of the President, President-Designate, eight Vice Presidents, the Secretary-General and the Associate Secretary-General, all elected by the General Assembly, plus the immediate Past President. At least one of the members shall be from a developing country.
  3. The term of office of Councilors normally begins and ends at the end of each General Assembly. In exceptional circumstances the General Assembly may extend the term of office.
  4. The President may not be re-elected. The President-Designate normally will be elected to the Presidency. Five of the Vice Presidents shall be elected at large. Five Vice Presidents shall be elected from among the Chairs of the Commissions. Consideration shall be given to an appropriate sub-disciplinary balance on the Council. If the President is unable to serve, the President-Designate shall assume the Presidency. The Council may fill any other vacancy that occurs between General Assemblies.
  5. The Council has all of the authority of the General Assembly between General Assemblies except those items specified in Section III-A) of these statutes, subject to ratification at the next General Assembly. It may fill vacancies in the Commissions that occur between General Assemblies.
  6. The Secretary-General carries out the Administration of the affairs of the Union with the assistance of the Associate Secretary-General.
  7. The Council shall appoint an auditor to certify an annual financial report.


  1. The Commissions promote the objectives of the Union within their areas of expertise and provide advice to IUPAP on the activities and needs of the subfields of physics they represent.
  2. The Commissions are elected according to procedures specified in the By-Laws. Affiliated Commissions are groups of scientists recognized by the General Assembly but appointed by other scientific bodies.


  1. A Member joins the Union with a number of shares negotiated by the Council and approved by the General Assembly. A Member's dues are equal to the number of shares multiplied by the dues per share determined by the General Assembly.
  2. Dues are payable on the first day of each year, and are the responsibility of the Adhering Bodies.
  3. A Member in arrears for three years loses its right to vote in the General Assembly. A Member in arrears for six years is excluded from the Union. Any member ceasing to belong to the Union forfeits all rights to Union assets.
  4. In exceptional circumstances, the Council may make a temporary adjustment to a Member's dues.
  5. Dues may be used to cover administrative expenses as well as carrying out activities in furtherance of the Mission of the Union.
  6. The Union may accept grants, contracts, and donations in furtherance of its Mission.


  1. The number of votes of a Member is related to its number of shares as follows: one share gives one vote; two or three shares give two votes; four to six shares give three votes; seven to nine shares give four votes; ten to fifteen shares give five votes; sixteen or more shares give six votes.
  2. Members paying less than one share have no vote.
  3. The number of official delegates a Member has to the General Assembly is equal to its number of votes.
  4. Each Chair of a Commission or an Affiliated Commission, or, in the Chair's absence, its Vice-Chair or Secretary is an official delegate and has one vote.
  5. Members of the Council who are not also Commission Chairs do not vote, except that the President may vote to break tie votes.
  6. Motions concerning scientific issues will be decided by a majority of the individual official Delegates present and voting.
  7. On all other motions, the Heads of Delegations cast all of the Delegation's votes. The question is decided by a majority of votes cast.
  8. In the event of a question on the category of a motion, the President will decide.
  9. A Member whose Delegation is unable to attend may submit a written vote to the Secretary-General on any matter on the initial agenda. It must be received before the vote to be valid. It is not possible to extend this privilege to questions arising at the General Assembly.


  1. The life of the Union is not limited.
  2. In the event of dissolution of the Union, requiring a two-thirds majority of the votes of the Members, the remaining assets of the Union will be allocated by the General Assembly to one or more educational, charitable or scientific organizations.


  1. The legal domicile of the Union shall be Switzerland.