Organizational Structure

IPSA Council

IPSA Council

The IPSA Council elects, within its members, the voting members of the Executive Committee. The IPSA Council is composed of representatives of Collective Members (representing national political science associations, see Collective Membership) and of Individual Members. The Individual Members of the Council are proposed by the President and ratified by the Executive Committee. Their total number may not exceed 25% of the number of representatives of Collective Members, and are selected from the following categories:

  • Individual and Associate Members of the IPSA from countries or regions where there is no Collective Member;
  • Chairpersons and secretaries of IPSA Research Committees and Study Groups;
  • Boards of Editors of IPSA official publications.

The Council meets every 2 years during the IPSA World Congress.

What is the IPSA Council?

The Council is the General Assembly of the International Political Science Association. It is composed of representatives of each collective member (National and Regional Associations) who have a pre-assigned number of votes in the Council. The most important decisions concerning IPSA (such as changes to the Constitution, for example) are discussed and voted by the Council. Article 15 clarifies that "The Council shall determine the policy of the Association, approve the accounts, and review the financial prospects of the Association for the succeeding two years."

The Council is also responsible for the election of the IPSA President and the IPSA Executive Committee.

Who can take part in the Council?

Article 11 of the IPSA Constitution dictates that, the Council shall be composed of two classes of members:

  1. Representatives designated by the collective members of the association in such a number as may be determined by the Executive Committee, provided that no collective member shall be entitled to more than three representatives on the Council; in case there should be two or more collective members from a country, the total number of representatives of such collective members on the Council shall not exceed three. Each collective member shall be entitled to designate alternates to represent it at any meeting of the Council.
  2. Individual members proposed by the president and ratified by the Executive Committee. The individual members, whose total number may not exceed 25% of the number of representatives of collective members, are selected from the following categories:
    1. Individual and institutional members of the IPSA from countries or regions where there is no collective member;
    2. Chairpersons and secretaries of IPSA research committees and study groups or their representatives;
    3. Boards of editors of IPSA official publications.
Article 16 of the IPSA constitution stipulates that each member of the Council shall have a single vote.


Are there any exceptions?

Yes, Article 11 of the IPSA Constitution also clarifies that: "The members of national associations which are more than two years in arrears with their fees are ineligible to sit on the Council unless a successful appeal is made to the Executive Committee."

There are also provisions for the attendance of non-voting members stipulated by the IPSA Rules and Procedures. Article 4 in Book 1 states that: Meetings of the Council shall be attended, normally in a non-voting capacity, by the Executive Director, the Congress program chair, the IPSA Summer Schools Coordinator, the Research Committee Liaison Representative and the editors of IPSA’s publications (the International Political Science Abstracts, the International Political Science Review and IPSA Portal). Other persons, including representatives of institutional members, may be invited by the President to attend all or part of a meeting.

When does the IPSA Council Meet?

As per Article 12 of the Constitution: "The Council shall normally meet in regular session once every two years at such time and place as may be designated by the Executive Committee." Since up to now IPSA held its World Congress of Political Science every two years, the Council has traditionally met on the occasion of the event.

In case of exceptional circumstances, Article 14 provides for extraordinary sessions of the Council stating that: "A special session of the Council shall be convened by the Executive Director upon request of two thirds of the collective members of the Association. The Executive Director shall give reasonable notice of the date, place and object of any special session."

How can I be informed about Council Procedures and Schedules?

As the highest decision making body of the association, the IPSA Council receives special attention concerning its schedule and procedures. According to the Constitution (Article 18) this is how the process of organizing the Council takes place at the administrative level:

Three months before the opening of each regular session of the Council, the Executive Director shall communicate to each member of the Council the date, place, and provisional agenda of the session. The provisional agenda shall include:

  1. The report of the Executive Director on the work of the Association since the last session of the Council;
  2. The accounts of the Association for the preceding three years;
  3. A statement of the financial prospects of the Association for the succeeding two years;
  4. Items proposed by the Executive Committee;
  5. Items proposed by any collective member;
  6. Election of the President of the Association;
  7. Election of the Executive Committee for the succeeding two years.

At the moment the Secretariat is developing a system that will facilitate communication and exchanges between Council members in order to make the process as open and participative as possible. We are counting on the support and participation of our members in order to make this meeting a productive and constructive forum for the improvement of the association.

Council Fact:

Half the members of the Council constitutes a quorum (Article 8, IPSA Constitution)


The IPSA constitution requires that the Executive Committee (EC) contain a minimum of 12 and a maximum of 19 members, including the President, Past President and President-Elect. In addition to this quorum, Executive Committee meetings are attended, in a non-voting capacity, by the RC-EC Liaison, the Summer School Coordinator,  the Program Chair (if he/she isn't already a voting member of the EC), the Editors of IPSA’s publications as well as the Executive Director and the administrator of the secretariat. Voting members of the EC are elected by the IPSA Council.

EC Sub-Committees

EC sub-committees are composed and chaired by EC members. They follow specific mandates in support of the work of the EC. There are several EC sub-committees, as follows:

  • Committee on Organization, Procedure and Awards
  • Committee on Research and Training
  • Committee on the Congress Program
  • Committee on Membership and Participation
  • Budget Committee
  • Committee on Publications
  • Committee on Academic Freedom and Ethics
  • Committee of Gender and Diversity Monitoring

* Ad-Hoc Committees can be created by the EC, as each EC may adopt its own rules & procedures according to the Constitution.


Editors are non-voting members of the EC. They are:

RC-EC Liaison

The Research Committee (RC) - EC Liaison is a non-voting member of the EC. He advises the EC on matters relating to the Research Committees. For more information on the RC-EC Liaison, go to the Research Committees section.

IPSA Summer Schools Coordinator

The IPSA Summer Schools Coordinator is a non-voting member of the EC. He represents the IPSA Summer Schools on the EC.

The 27th Executive Committee Members:


Ex officio Executive Committee Members:

The Secretariat is represented on the Executive Committee by the Executive Director (named by the EC). The Executive Director is the Treasurer of IPSA and acts as Secretary during EC meetings (responsible for the minutes of the meeting). She oversees the organization of the IPSA World Congress and other meetings organized by the EC.

The current Secretariat team: