Constitution of the Digital Government Society

Article 1. Name

The name of the organization is “Digital Government Society of North America”; it may also be known as “DG Society”, “DG Society of North America”, or “DGSNA”, and hereinafter will be referred to as “the Society”. The official name has been amended to the Digital Government Society  [Amended in 10/11/2013].

Article 2. Registered Office

The Society has no registered office at this time. If an office is required, a suitable proposal to amend these Articles will be accepted by the Board.

Article 3. Purpose

  1. The purpose of this document is to constitute the Digital Government Society as it was chartered on August 30, 2006, according to the laws of California, United States of America.
  2. Purposes and mission of the Society: The Society is a global multi-disciplinary organization of scholars and practitioners engaged in and committed to democratic digital government. Digital (or electronic) government fosters the use of information and technology to support and improve public policies and government operations, engage citizens, and provide comprehensive and timely government services. DGS equips its members with a professional support network focused on both scholarship and effective practices that nurture technical, social, and organizational transformation in the public sector. The society welcomes members from all sectors, endorses diverse, multi-, and interdisciplinary research undertakings relevant to both theory and practice, and strongly encourages practitioner-researcher exchanges at local, regional, national, and international levels.
  3. The only financial distributions that may be made to the founders of the Society or to those who are members of its bodies are funds to be used to support the business of the Society, such as organizing workshops, traveling to meetings, performing administrative duties, etc.

Article 4. Constituency

  1. The Society will primarily serve people who reside in North America.  In addition, until regional societies or chapters are created for people residing in the adjacent regions of Central America and South America, the Society will serve them as well.  These persons will hereinafter be referred to as “the Society Members”.
  2. Interested people who reside elsewhere but who wish to join the Society may do so under exactly the same conditions as those listed in Article 4 Paragraph 1.

Article 5. Board

  1. The administration of the Society shall be conducted by the Society Board, which shall consist of a President, a President-Elect, a Secretary, a Treasurer, the most recent past President (provided he or she completed a term of duty), and no fewer than three (3) Board members.  All these persons shall be Society Members, as defined in Article 4.  Except for the past Chair they shall be elected by the Society Members for a two-year term of office.  If vacancies occur, the Society Board shall appoint replacements to serve until the next election.  Except for the Treasurer, no Board member shall serve more than two (2) terms in any single elected office, and no more than three (3) terms in any elected office.  The President-Elect shall automatically become President upon the next election, barring unusual circumstances; every election will thus offer candidates for President-Elect but not President.  The Treasurer may serve for a maximum of ten (10) years in that position, subject to the satisfaction of the Board, and the Members.  After the first President, every President must have served on the Board for at least one year during the five years prior to their term as President.
  2. The Society Treasurer is empowered to receive, deposit, and disburse any funds received on behalf of the DG Society and, together with the Secretary, to make arrangements for handling the affairs of the Society.
  3. To oversee the elections, there shall be a Nominating Committee consisting of at least three members.  Nominating Committee members will be solicited by the Board in advance of each election by an open call for volunteers.  Nominating Committee members must be Society Members in good standing, may not be continuing officers or candidates for election, and may not serve on the Nominating Committee for longer than three consecutive years.  The Chair of the Nominating Committee shall be determined by vote of the members of the Nominating Committee.  The Past President of the Society Board shall consult with the Nominating Committee to provide advice about potential nominees. [Amended 12/15/2007]
  4. Elections shall be conducted annually as follows: the Nominating Committee shall identify nominees by an open call for candidates as well as by individual outreach. By the tenth of October preceding the end of a term of office the Committee shall nominate at least one person for each position to be filled.  The Secretary shall send to the Society Members notice of the nominations by October 15, at the same time requesting additional nominations.  Additional nominations, supported by at least three Society Members, may be submitted by the tenth of November; evidence must be presented that the nominee will serve if elected.  If there is more than one nominee for any position, the Secretary shall. prepare ballots for that position and an online voting process, open to Members in good standing, will commence on the fifteenth of November.  A majority vote of the ballots received by the fifteenth of December shall determine the results of such contests.  Those elected shall take office on the first of January following. [Amended 12/15/2007]

Article 6. Administrative Duties and Representation

  1. The Society Board as defined by Article 5 paragraph 1 shall:
    1. determine the place and time of Society conferences and meetings;
    2. appoint members to be responsible for organizing the programs and local arrangements of such conferences and meetings;
    3. fix registration fees for Society meetings;
    4. select the editors of any publications prepared for the Society;
    5. form committees to assist in conducting the activities of the Society;
    6. select representatives to attend meetings of related organizations.

    All actions taken by the Board are subject to review at the regular conferences of the Society.

  2. The Board shall organize an open meeting for all Society Members periodically, typically annually but not less frequently than every principal conference of the Society, during which Board members shall provide an account of their respective activities over the preceding period.  This General Meeting shall be chaired by the Board President unless circumstances prevent this.
  3. The Society Board shall have the power to perform all such acts of administration and disposition as it deems necessary or desirable for the realization of the purposes stated in Article 3 and for the tasks in Article 6 paragraph 1 above.  It shall be empowered to enter into any agreements for the acquisition, alienation whereby the Society grants security or becomes several co-debtor, or answers for any third party, or undertakes to grant security for a debt of another.
  4. The Society shall be represented by two officers of the Board acting jointly without prejudice to the power of the Board to make special provision for representation if required in unusual circumstances.

Article 7. Financial Management

  1. The financial year shall coincide with the calendar year.  The Treasurer will be under the obligation to keep account of the financial position of the Society in accordance with the requirements arising therefrom, and to keep the books, records and other data carriers belonging to the accounts in such way that the rights and obligations of the Society can be learned at all times.
  2. The Treasurer will supply a current balance sheet and a statement of assets and liabilities to the Board once a year, to be approved and signed by all members of the Board.  These records will form part of a report on the activities and operations of the Society, which will be distributed annually to the Society Members at the General Meeting described in Article 6 paragraph 2.
  3. The Board will be under the obligation to keep the books, records, and other data carriers mentioned in paragraphs 1 and 2 of this Article for ten years.  It will ensure that the data is available during that full period, and can be made readable within a reasonable time.

Article 8. Amendment of Articles

Proposed amendments to the Constitution must either be approved by the Society Board or be proposed by not less than ten (10) Members.  The proposed amendments must then be circulated to all Members and ratified by a majority vote of those persons whose ballots are received within two months of circulation.  Amendments go into effect upon approval of this vote, within one month after the date of the vote.  Proposed amendments may not be presented at a Society meeting unless notice to the effect that a proposed amendment will be discussed had been included in the announcement convening the Board meeting.

Article 9. Dissolution

  1. If the Board is of the opinion that the purposes of the Society as defined in Article 3 cannot or can no longer be sufficiently realized, the Board may resolve to dissolve the Society; such a resolution concerning dissolution shall be passed in accordance with the provisions of the preceding Article.
  2. In case of dissolution, the liquidation shall be effected by the Board members then in office.
  3. Should the Society have any funds remaining after settlement of all debts, these funds shall be paid to a public charity in which no Board member has any personal connection.

Article 10. Unspecified Matters

All cases falling within the scope of these Articles but not provided for therein shall be handled by a resolution of the Society Board.

Created by:

Eduard Hovy, Digital Government Research Center, University of Southern California
Stuart Shulman, University of Pittsburgh
Theresa Pardo, Center for Technology in Government, University at Albany
as commissioned by a public meeting at the dg.o 2005 conference in Atlanta, GA, drawing upon the Articles of the North American Chapter of the Association of Computational Linguistics
 
Ratified by: Voting members, March 13, 2006
Amended: Voting members, December 15, 2007
Maintained by the Secretary of the Digital Government Society of North America, www.dgsociety.org
 
[Amendment History]
1. The original name registered as the "Digital Government Society of North America" has been amended to the Digital Government Society as of October 11, 2013.
 
Last updated [12/15/2007]
Last Updated [Monday, 18 January 2010 20:05]
Last updated [Tue, October 4, 2014 11:22pm]