About Us
Links and Resources

I. Organization
     1. The name of this organization is: The International Society of Phonetic Sciences
         (abbreviated: ISPhS).
     2. The organization may, if so desired, change its name through a vote of the
     3. Any change in these Bylaws can be enacted only by a two thirds majority of the
         members voting.
     4. The Society's Board of Directors will consist of a President, Executive Vice
         President, eight or more Vice Presidents, all past-Presidents, the Treasurer and the
     5. The Executive Committee will consist of the President, the Executive Vice President,
         the Secretary General, and three rotating Vice Presidents.
     6. The Council of Representatives consists of (1) all Regional Secretaries, (2) one
         member from each affiliated organization (Affiliated Member, as in Article Three,
         Sect. 1), and (3) two members from each national or regional Phonetics Society. The
         choice of a representative lies in the hands of each affiliated organization but must
         be approved by the Executive Committee acting for the Board of Directors.
     7. The Phonetician will serve as the official bulletin of ISPhS.

II. Purposes
     The purposes for which this organization has been set up and the aims which it pursues
     are as follows:
     1. To establish and maintain a center of information for Phoneticians;
     2. To secure and develop contacts with kindred scientific organizations and to assist
         the establishment of such organizations in countries where none exist;
     3. To promote training and research in the field of Phonetics in all countries and at all
         levels of the education system;
     4. To encourage research and teaching in new and/or specialized fields of Phonetics,  
         particularly in matters where the Phonetic Sciences have not penetrated duly;
     5. To effect the practical application of Phonetics in the teaching of foreign languages;
     6. To promote the arrangement of scientific meetings on Phonetic topics, for instance
         by endorsing requests for official support, through patronage and other forms of
III. Membership
     1. Membership Types
          i. Member: Any person in the Science of Phonetics can apply to the Secretary-
             General for membership and become a regular member upon approval and
             payment of the appropriate membership fees. Life members pay their membership
             fee in one lump sum according to their age.
          ii. Student Member: Any bonafide student interested in the Phonetic Sciences can
             apply to the Secretary-General for such membership and become a student
             member upon demonstration of student status and payment of the appropriate 
             membership fees.
         iii. Emeritus Member: A regular member in good standing can apply to the Secretary-
             General for the "Emeritus Member" category of membership and be so
             designated providing the applicant: (1) has been a regular member for at least five
             years, (2) has reached the age of 65 years and (3) has retired from full-time
             employment. Emeritus members pay no fees.
         iv. Affiliate Membership: International, national, or local organizations pursuing wholly
             or partially parallel aims may become affiliated members. The admission of such
             affiliated members requires the express decision of the Board of Directors,
             represented by the four officers of the Society (Article Four, Sect. 1). Membership
             in an affiliated organization does not imply personal membership in ISPhS.
          v. Honorary Member: Upon the suggestion of any member, regular or affiliate, the
             membership may, by a majority vote, elect honorary members, honorary Vice-
             Presidents, and one honorary President if there is not one already.
         vi. Fellow: Any bonafide member may be nominated for, and elected to, the rank of
             ISPhS Fellow. This honor is awarded to those individuals who have materially
             advanced the cause and/or the field of Phonetic Sciences, who have made
             outstanding scientific, scholarly, or academic contributions to this discipline
             and/or who have made extensive contributions to the Society. To be considered for
             Fellow, a member must be nominated by two Fellows or four members.
        vii. Special Membership: There are several extraordinary categories of membership;
             they are for members who wish to provide special aid to the Society and its
             programs. These membership classes include Sustaining Member, Sponsor,
             Patron and Institutional Member; members in these special categories are
             honored by the Society. The requisites for special membership are found listed in
             the Phonetician.
     2. Any member may at any time withdraw from the Society or may be suspended or
         expelled by the Board of Directors for any cause prejudical to the highest interests of
         the Society.
     3. Fees of regular and affiliated membership shall be determined at each General
         Meeting on the proposition of the Board of Directors and/or the Council of
         Representatives. To the extent that fees cannot be determined on a general scale
         (nonconvertible currency, for example), the question of fees may be settled for each
         country separately.
IV. Officers
     1. The officers of the Society will be the President, the Executive Vice-President, the 
         Secretary-General, and the Treasurer. The Vice-President who is to act as
         Executive Vice-President will be chosen by the Board of Directors for a period lasting
         up to four years.
     2. The powers and the duties of the officers will be as follows:
          i. President:
                  The President will convene and preside over all meetings of the Society and of
                  its Board of Directors. This officer will sign all contracts in the name of the
                  Society. Further, the President will enforce these Bylaws and ensure that all
                  books and records are accurately kept.
          ii. Executive Vice President:
                  In the absence of the President, the Executive Vice President will perform the
                  duties of the President.
          iii. Secretary-General:
                  The Secretary General will be the primary ISPhS operating official. The
                  Secretary General will keep the minutes of all meetings, conduct all
                  correspondence of the Society, and perform all the daily and customary duties
                  of a secretary, such as keeping records, supervising committee activities,
                  submitting information and offering advice to the Society. The Secretary
                  General will appoint the Regional Secretaries and supervise their activities; the
                  Secretary General also will chair the Meetings of the Council of
          iv. Treasurer:
                  The Treasurer will manage the Society's financial affairs and keep the
                  accounts. The Treasurer will present the financial report, audited by a member
                  of the society, at least every two years.
     3. No officer will receive any salary or compensation, other than for those expenses or 
         disbursements authorized by the President.
     4. A Society auditor will be elected by the membership, by mail vote, for a period of four
         years. The auditor may be re-elected.

V. Elections and Voting
     1. The President, Vice Presidents, Treasurer, and the Auditor all will be elected every
         four years and by mail ballot. They will be identified by a nominating committee
         charged with this task. They are eligible for reelection for a second term.
     2. The President chooses the Secretary General with the approval of the Board of
     3. The elective body of ISPhS consists of the regular and emeritus (individual) members
         voting. Every full and individual member is entitled to one vote. All action will be
         decided by a majority vote, except as described in Article One, Sect. 3. Elections
         will be carried out by the Secretary General - and by the process articulated in
         Article Five, Sect. 4.
     4. The Executive Committee may recommend that the members of the Society vote by
         mail on other relevant issues also (such as changes in policy; replacement of officers
         who have resigned or died). All such mail ballots must be approved by the Board of
         Directors before voting may take place. If approved, the Secretary General is required
         to mail ballots to all regular individual members by air mail or e-mail; they are
         permitted 45 days to return the ballots. All action will be decided by a majority vote,
         except action as described in Article One, Sect. 3.
VI. Directors and Representatives
     1. The business of the Society and the management of its affairs will be vested in the
         Board of Directors (Article One, Sect. 4), however, day-to-day management is
         delegated to the Executive Committee.
     2. The Board of Directors will have control of the property and affairs of the Society, and
         will determine its policies. They will have power to call meetings, organize
         committees, employ the necessary staff, accept, suspend, or expell members as in
         these Bylaws provided, authorize proper expenditures, and take all suitable steps to
         carry out the purposes of the Society and to promote its activities and highest
     3. The Council of Representatives operates as a lower parliamentary chamber to the
         Board of Directors and advises the Society on any relevant issue. It especially will
         be concerned with meetings, publications, and fees.
VII. Meetings
     1. General Meetings (GM) will be called by the Executive Committee at least every four
         years in conjunction with an international congress for Phonetic Sciences of which
         the Society is a sponsor. These meetings are announced at least 90 days in
         advance. All forms of business, except the election of officers and modification of
         these Bylaws, may take place during these meetings. Reports of all meetings will
         be published in the Phonetician.
     2. Business Meetings (BM) unite the members of the Board of Directors and represent
         a forum of discussion for the old and new business of the Society. They are generally
         held before General Meetings and may be combined with Meetings of the Council of
         Representatives (CRM).
     3. The Meetings of the Council of Representatives are also generally held before the
        General Meetings. They represent a forum of discussion for the special business of
         the Council of Representatives and may be held in conjunction with the BM.
     4. Other meetings of the Society - international, national, or local - may be convened at
         any time and in any form. Reports of such meetings will be sent to the Board of
         Directors within two months of the meeting's completion.
VIII. Committees
     1. Appointment of Committees: Either by action at the General Meeting or by the
         Executive Committee, committees may be appointed to consider special matters
         and dissolved when these matters are settled. The Board of Directors must approve
         these committees and their chairs.
     2. Committee Reports: Committees are required to report to the Board of Directors, the
         General Meeting, and to the ISPhS membership via the Phonetician.
IX. Amendments
        These Bylaws - or any part thereof - may be amended, repealed, or changed by a
        two-thirds vote of the members (Article One, Sect. 3), provided that a copy of the
        proposed text be mailed to the members along with the ballot. In the case of
        overseas members, this communication must be airmailed or e-mailed. Members
        have 45 days to respond with their vote.