Article 1. PURPOSES
a. The International Federation of Mammalogists (IFM), hereinafter called the Federation, shall promote international cooperation and understanding in the science of Mammalogy (Theriology).
b. In particular, the Federation shall encourage international collaboration in efforts for conservation of mammals and their habitats, in research, in the preservation of mammal collections, in the computerization of collection data, in the exchange of students, data, and specimens, in promoting a stable and evolutionarily based nomenclature, in issuance of collecting and specimen export permits, and in any other activity that promotes our knowledge and understanding of the Earth’s mammalian fauna.
c. The Federation shall organize International Mammalogical Congresses (IMC), generally at four year intervals (see Art. 6). These Congresses will continue the series initiated in 1974 as the International Theriological Congresses (ITC), the first being held in Moscow, USSR.
Article 2. ORGANIZATION
a. The Federation shall consist of a federation of organizations that are in whole or part devoted to the science of Mammalogy; see Article 3.
b. The Federation shall be governed by a Board of Directors, hereinafter called the Board; see Article 4.
c. The Federation shall operate within the purview of the International Union of Biological Sciences (IUBS) of the United Nations Educational, Scientific, and Cultural Organization (UNESCO).
d. The Federation will come into existence as soon as these statutes are approved by the current Steering Committee of the Section of Mammalogy (Theriology) of IUBS, and by the IUBS executive.
e. Except as otherwise prescribed in these Bylaws, motions and other actions can be approved by an affirmative vote of a simple majority of those present and eligible to vote (see Arts. 4e, 9a,c for exceptions).
Article 3. MEMBERSHIP
a. The members of the Federation shall be professional societies and other organizations devoted to the pursuit of the science of Mammalogy. See also Art. 8c.
b. Member Societies may be only partially concerned with Mammalogy as long as a significant proportion of their membership is so involved. Examples of such organizations might be national zoological or biological societies, especially if they have a division devoted to Mammalogy or vertebrate biology in general.
c. Organizations wishing to become members of the Federation need to apply to the Federation Secretary (see Art. 5d). Applications must be approved by the Board (see Art. 4) to initiate membership.
d. Member organizations must agree to supply annually to the Secretary the names and contact information for their officers, and their latest membership numbers. If the society is only partially devoted to Mammalogy, the proportion of members involved with Mammalogy as a science must be provided along with some explanation as to how this number was determined. Failure to comply with this requirement in a timely fashion will result in lapse of membership.
e. The Board of Directors may at its discretion establish a dues structure for Member Organizations.
Article 4. BOARD OF DIRECTORS
a. The Board of Directors shall consist of four elected officers (Art. 5a), the immediate past-president, and representatives from the Member Organizations. These representatives will be chosen by the Member Organizations. In the case of organizations only partially devoted to mammalogy, the chosen representative must be a mammalogist. Representatives will serve the interests of all mammalogists as well as speak, as may be needed, for the interests of their own Member Organization.
b. The number of representatives for each Member Organization will be based on the size of that society’s membership, according to the following scheme: up to 1000 mammalogists – 1 delegate, up to 2000 mammalogists – 2 delegates, etc. with a maximum of 5 representatives for any one Member Organization.
c. Member Organizations must inform the President and/or Secretary of their chosen representative(s) at least 15 days before the opening of the Congress (see Art. 6) subsequent to which these persons will serve their term of office. These incoming representatives will be invited to participate in all meetings of the Board during the Congress as non-voting guests (Art. 8b).
d. The Board shall be the governing body for the Federation, except as noted in Article 8c.
e. The Board will elect Federation officers (see Art. 5) from among its members, except that the President may be chosen from outside the Board. However, in the latter event, a two-thirds majority of the Board members voting will be required to elect the President. Officers may not serve for more than two consecutive terms.
f. The term of office for all officers and for society representatives to the Board begins at the termination of one Congress and ends at the termination of the next Congress. Generally this will be a four year term.
g. If a representative is unable to complete his/her term of office (Art. 4f), a Member Organization may change their representation between Congresses (Art. 6). However, in such cases, Member Organizations must inform the Board of the change at least 15 days in advance of the start of the ensuing Congress. Such inter-Congress changes in representation will not be allowed if the representative in question is one of the elected officers (Art. 5a).
h. The Board shall meet at least once during each IMC, and can conduct business between Congresses by correspondence or online conferences. A quorum for Board action will be 60% of the total number of representatives on the Board. i. Election of new officers by the Board should take place as early as possible during a Congress so that the new officers can participate as guests in subsequent Board meetings during the Congress.
Article 5. OFFICERS
a. The officers of the Board shall be: President, Vice-president, Secretary, and Treasurer.
b. The President will be the chief executive officer of the Federation. Duties will include 1) presiding over Board meetings as well as conducting business of the Board between Congresses; 2) appointing, with Board concurrence, the Chairs of all committees of the Federation (see Art. 7); 3) conducting General Business Meetings (see Art. 8) of attendees at the Congresses; and 4) representing the Federation at IUBS or other appropriate meetings or agencies. The President may, on occasion, delegate any of these duties to the Vice-President.
c. The Vice-president will be the second ranking executive officer of the Federation, and shall assume some or all of the President’s duties if the President so delegates them (see item b above), or in the absence of the President at meetings of the Federation, or in case the President becomes incapacitated or otherwise is not able to carry out the duties of office. A decision regarding the President’s inability to perform the duties of that office must be made by the Board.
d. The Secretary shall: 1) take minutes of all meetings of the Federation, and distribute these as appropriate; 2) keep records of the Federation activities, and pass these on to the next person holding this office and/or to the Federation archivist (see Art. 7d); 3) receive applications for membership from potential member societies (see Art. 3c); 4) communicate with Member Organizations with regard to their current officers and membership statistics (see Art. 3d); and 5) carry out any correspondence directed by the President and the Board.
e. The Treasurer shall be the chief financial officer of the Federation. In this capacity, the Treasurer shall; 1) be responsible for financial transactions of the Federation; 2) keep all of the financial records of the Federation; 3) pass on these records to the subsequent Treasurer and/or the Federation Archivist (see Art. 7d); 4) maintain a bank account for the monetary assets of the Federation with the Treasurer and at least one other officer (usually the President) being signatories to this account; and 5) provide a financial report to the General Business Meeting (Art. 8c) as well as annual reports to the Board.
Article 6. CONGRESSES
a. As mentioned in Article 1c, the Federation shall organize periodic international congresses, usually at four year intervals, to be called International Mammalogical Congresses (IMC).
b. The Congresses shall be planned and implemented by an IMC Organizing Committee, the Chair of which is to be chosen by the host society, and should be a current member of a Member Organization. The Committee shall also include one member of the Board who will serve as liaison between the Committee and the Board, and a representative of the immediately preceding IMC Organizing Committee.
c. Congresses should be planned so as to encourage the greatest possible international attendance, and to be self-sufficient financially. The Organizing Committee may petition the Board for a loan of monies to facilitate advance planning and arrangements. The Board, however, cannot be responsible for compensating the Organizing Committee for any losses that may accrue, anticipated or otherwise. The Organizing Committee may, in the event of a loss, petition the Board for relief from some or all of the loan repayment. In the event of a profit from a Congress, such excess funds shall be transferred to the account of the Federation.
d. The Organizing Committee shall make a full financial report on the Congress within one year following the event.
e. Attendance and registration at the Congresses shall be open to all interested persons.
Article 7. COMMITTEES
a. The Federation shall have both Standing and Ad hoc committees.
b. Committee Chairs shall be appointed by the President, with the concurrence of the Board, and shall serve for one term (the interval between the end of one Congress and the end of the next). Chairs shall serve for no more than two consecutive terms of office, but may remain as members of the committee.
c. Committee members other than the Chair shall be appointed by the Committee Chairperson, with the concurrence of the President. There is no restriction on reappointment for additional terms of service.
d. Standing committees shall include:
1) Historian/Archivist: This committee will be responsible for assembling, evaluating, and maintaining the records of the Federation. These materials shall include minutes of all Board and General Business Meetings, Congress programs and abstracts, list of attendees at the Congresses, list of members of the Congress Organizing Committees, copies of critical correspondence relating to the organization of the Congresses, lists of pre- and post-Congress tours, and any other materials deemed useful to future historians. This committee shall also receive documents from the Secretary, Treasurer, and other officers (see Art. 5). Photographs, tapes, and other memorabilia may also be archived.
2) Nomenclature: This committee shall advise members of the Federation on matters of mammalian nomenclature, and maintain communication with the International Committee of Zoological Nomenclature.
3) Collections: This committee shall maintain records of collections of mammals, facilitate communication among curators regarding curatorial procedures, loans, and other exchanges of information, and encourage high standards of record keeping and maintenance.
4) Conservation: This committee shall maintain communication among the Member Organizations on matters of mammal conservation. It will thus serve as a clearing house for information and advice on such issues for Member Organizations and/or their own conservation committees. The Committee may draft and sponsor resolutions on critical conservation issues for consideration at General Business Meetings.
e. Additional Standing Committees can be established by action of the Board.
g. Ad hoc committees: The Board may establish ad hoc (temporary) committees on any relevant subject. Such committees will have a specified term of existence, which can be amended by the Board.
Article 8. MEETINGS
a. There shall be two types of meetings associated with business of the Federation: meetings of the Board and General Business Meetings.
b. The Board of Directors shall meet one or more times during the course of the Congresses (see Art. 4h). Incoming representatives, newly elected officers if known, chairs of all committees, as well as a representative of the current IMC Organizing Committee shall be invited as non-voting guests at all meetings of the Board.
c. At each Congress there shall be a General Business Meeting in which all registered attendees at the Congress shall be invited, and each shall have a vote. The President or his designee shall preside. Aside from receiving information from the Board and from committees, the attendees can ask questions, propose actions for the Federation, pass resolutions, and generally discuss any relevant matters. This body shall also receive nominations for subsequent Congress venues, either from the Board or directly from the floor. After suitable discussion, the assembled members will vote on a site for the next Congress. If there is only a single nomination, this must be confirmed by majority vote. The time and place for the General Business Meeting must be included conspicuously in the Congress program, and given appropriate publicity as the Congress proceeds.
Article 9. REVISIONS TO THE BYLAWS
a. These statutes may be revised by a two-thirds (67%) affirmative vote of the Board.
b. Proposals for revisions intended for action by the Board (Art. 9a) can originate from two sources: 1) from within the Board membership, and 2) by petition from a General Business Meeting (Art. 8c). In both cases the Board must receive the proposal at least three months before it takes action on the proposal.
c. These statutes may also be revised by a two-thirds (67%) affirmative vote at a General Business Meeting.
d. Proposals for revisions intended for action by a General Business Meeting (Art. 9c) can originate from two sources: 1) as a recommendation from the Board (a majority affirmative vote is required for the Board to submit such a recommendation), and 2) as a motion made at the General Business Meeting. In the latter case, the Board must have been informed in writing of the intended motion at least three months in advance of the General Business Meeting at which it is to be considered. In addition, the proposed changes must be included in the Congress program and/or announced at a plenary session well in advance of the scheduled meeting.
Article 10. DISSOLUTION
a. In the event that the Federation is dissolved, all remaining assets must be either: 1) distributed to the member organizations in proportion to their representation on the Board, or 2) given to a not-for-profit charitable organization as determined by the Board. Some combination of these two actions may also be possible.
The IMC 13 will be held in Anchorage, Alaska. The meeting will be co-hosted by the IFM and by the American Society of Mammalogists. We anticipate that the conference will take place during July 2021, although the specific dates have yet to be determined. We will post additional information here as it becomes available. We look forward to seeing you in Anchorage!