Definition and purpose
The Council and Bureau
The Executive Secretary
1. There shall be a European Academies Science Advisory Council.
2. The main business of the Council shall be to provide authoritative reports and assessments on scientific topics relevant to European policy needs (see further paragraphs 13-19 below). These shall normally be written by an expert working group nominated by the Council, provided that the Council shall have power to add to, or ask for amendments of, such reports or to attach its own comments to them, or to speak on the basis of its own competence.
3. The participating bodies shall be
(i) one scientific Academy, or consortium of such Academies, from each member country of the European Union;
(ii) ALLEA, as the federation of national Academies of sciences and humanities in Europe;
(iii) the Academia Europaea.
4. The members of the Council shall normally be the Presidents of the participating bodies, though other distinguished scientists may be nominated to act in their place. There shall be one member from each of the participating bodies. Members shall normally be appointed for three years, and shall be eligible for reappointment once.
5. The Council may, at its discretion, invite either or both of The Norwegian Academy of Science and Letters and The Swiss Academy of Sciences, to nominate, in the case of each academy, one member of Council. At the discretion of the Bureau, non-voting observers may be invited to attend meetings.
6. If there is doubt which Academy or consortium of Academies should represent a particular European Union country, it shall be resolved by the President of the Council, together with the Bureau and in consultation with the President of ALLEA.
7. The Council shall have a President. It shall also have as many Vice-Presidents (being not less than two) as the Council itself shall decide. The President and Vice-Presidents, together with the President-elect and, for the first year following the end of his or her term as President, the immediate past-President, shall constitute the Bureau.
8. The President shall be elected by the Council from among its members; such election shall require a two-thirds majority of those voting, provided that at least half the members vote. This election shall normally take place one year before the office of President is due to become vacant. The Vice-Presidents shall also be elected by the Council from among its members; such election shall require a two-thirds majority of those voting provided that at least half the members vote. The President and Vice-Presidents shall be elected to hold office for a maximum of three years at a time. They shall be eligible for re-election, provided that no one shall serve as President for more than three years in all other than in exceptional circumstances and by special resolution of the Council, or as Vice-President for more than six years in all.
9. The Council normally meets twice a year, but a meeting shall be called whenever one-third of the members so request. With the agreement of the Council, appropriate items of Council business, including voting, may be conducted by email or other efficient means of remote communication. The Bureau, and other EASAC committees and working groups may follow similar procedures.
10. Each Council member shall serve as an individual and not as the representative of the body from which s/he comes. However, Council members may consult their parent bodies provided this does not interfere with the efficient conduct of Council business.
11. Council members shall inform the President of any conflicts of interest and, at the decision of the Bureau, shall take no part in discussion and voting on the matter concerned.
12. Council members shall receive no fee or other remuneration, but may receive out-of-pocket expenses.
13. Topics for reports may be suggested:
i. by any European Union Institution
ii. by any of the EASAC participating bodies
iii. by the Council itself, or its advisory groups
iv. by any other customer
14. The Council shall address any topic unless in the opinion of the Bureau it is unsuitable or the resources for addressing it are inadequate. No topic shall be accepted unless in the opinion of the Bureau it is possible to obtain a report on it that is both timely and authoritative. The Bureau shall not reject a topic without consulting the Council.
15. The acceptance of a topic shall require a proposal from the Bureau together with the assent of a majority of members of the Council voting on the proposal. In assessing the scientific scope, strategic significance, value and viability of proposed reports the Bureau and Council shall receive advice from Steering Panels, which are expert scientific advisory groups in each of the main areas of EASAC’s policy advice activities.
16. If a topic is accepted, the Bureau shall set up an expert working group to produce a report on it. In order to do so, the Bureau shall ask each member of Council and each participating body for names of suitable experts to serve on the working group. The Bureau shall not be bound to accept all the names suggested. The Bureau can consult the members of the respective Steering Panel to decide the most suitable members of a working group. The Bureau shall inform the Council of the proposed membership of expert working groups before it is finalised. If a topic has a substantial component or other specialized aspects which are outside the normal competence of EASAC, the working group shall if possible be set up in collaboration with relevant partner(s). Potential working group members shall provide a statement of any conflicts of interest.
17. Expert working groups shall be answerable to the Council or, for a collaborative project, jointly to the Council and the relevant partner(s). The draft report of any expert working group shall be circulated to all members of the Council for their comments. The Bureau may then negotiate with the working group amendments to the report, or publish the report with (if necessary) comments agreed by the Council appended to it. Reports shall be published under the aegis of the Council, but shall be attributed to the named members of the expert working groups.
18. Expert working groups shall operate in accordance with best practice in respect of openness and transparency. All reports of expert working groups shall be published, by such means as may in any particular case be appropriate, unless decided otherwise by the Council. A decision by Council not to publish shall require a majority of those voting.
19. The Council shall adopt rules of procedure concerning the conduct of projects and other matters. Adoption, and amendment, of the rules shall be on a recommendation of the Bureau and the assent of a majority of Council members voting.
20. There shall be a Secretariat, hosted by one of EASAC’s participating bodies. The management and support of the Secretariat will be the responsibility of the host participating body. The task of the Secretariat is the day-to-day handling of all EASAC activities, in particular the organisation of working groups for the writing and publication of reports. The location of the Secretariat shall be reviewed by Council every five years.
21. The Executive Director of the Secretariat shall report to the President and shall carry out such tasks as may be assigned by the President. The Executive Director shall liaise with the secretariats of ALLEA and Academia Europaea. The President or Executive Director shall provide such periodic reports to individual participating bodies as the participating bodies may reasonably require.
22. EASAC is primarily financed through the contributions of its participating bodies. Such contributions of the various participating bodies need not all be the same.
23. No project shall be undertaken unless adequate financial provision is made, by the customer, the Council or the participating bodies.
24. The performance and continuation of the Council shall be reviewed at five-year intervals.
25. Amendments to these Statutes may be suggested by participating bodies. A majority of two-thirds of participating bodies is needed for statutes to be amended.
Royal Swedish Academy of Sciences, Stockholm - 10 June 2001
Amended Hungarian Academy of Sciences, Budapest - 17 June 2010
Amended Polish Academy of Sciences, Warsaw - 9 December 2010