Constitution HTML

I. Name

1. An Association is established under the name of International Network for Quality Assurance Agencies in Higher Education which may be abbreviated as INQAAHE (and is hereinafter in this constitution referred to as the Network).

2. The Network is a not-for-profit-making organisation.

II. Purposes

3. The purposes of the Network are:

3.1 to create, collect and disseminate information on current and developing theory and practice in the assessment, improvement and maintenance of quality in higher education;

3.2 to undertake or commission research in areas relevant to quality in higher education;

3.3 to express the collective views of its members on matters relevant to quality in higher education through contacts with international bodies and by other means;

3.4 to promote the theory and practice of the improvement of quality in higher education;

3.5 to provide advice and expertise to assist existing and emerging quality assurance agencies;

3.6 to facilitate links between quality assurance agencies and support networks of quality assurance agencies;

3.7 to assist members to determine the standards of institutions operating across national borders and facilitate better-informed international recognition of qualifications;

3.8 to assist in the development and use of credit transfer and credit accumulation schemes to enhance the mobility of students between institutions (within and across national borders);

3.9 to enable members to be alert to improper quality assurance practices and organisations;

3.10 to organise, on request, reviews of the operation of members

III. Dissemination of Information

4. the Network will disseminate information and research findings to members through

  • seminars, workshops and conferences;
  • newsletters, documents, journals and books;
  • databases of members of the Network with a description of their powers, interests, responsibilities and operations, and information about relevant higher education initiatives and activities; and other appropriate means, as determined by the General Assembly. 

IV. Finance

5. The Network may set fees and levy charges for its publications and information disseminated by other means, for example conferences and workshops.

6. Membership fees will be set at a level decided from time to time by the General Assembly.

7. The Network may seek and receive donations and other forms of financial support in furtherance of the objects of the Network.

V. Membership

8. The Network has two categories of membership, Full and Associate.

8.1 Full member are organisations responsible for assuring the academic quality of institutions of tertiary education or education programmes other than their own, such as: accrediting agencies; evaluation agencies and similar organizations; and those bodies responsible for the external quality assurance of such agencies.

8.2 Associate Members are institutions of tertiary education and/or organisations with a major interest in evaluation, accreditation and quality assurance in higher education, but without the responsibility for assuring quality of institutions or education programmes as described in 8.1

9. Persons with a major interest in evaluation, accreditation and quality assurance in higher education may affiliate to the Network.

10. An applicant for membership of or affiliation with the Network is required to present a written request to the Secretariat of the Network, and provide a brief description of its role, interests, responsibilities and operations in the required format.

11. The Board will verify that the request for membership or affiliation complies with either of the conditions mentioned in clauses 8.1, 8.2 or 9 and make a decision regarding the admission of the applicant.

12. All members may participate in the Governing Bodies of the Network.

13. Affiliates may participate in the General Assembly, but without the right to vote.

14. Members and Affiliates may

14.1 benefit from the Secretariat’s services;

14.2 collaborate in the attainment of the Network’s objectives; and

14.3 exercise their rights according to the Constitution.

15. Members and Affiliates are obliged to

15.1 abide by the Constitution of the Network; and

15.2 remit, in due time, the subscriptions or any other contributions determined in accordance with the Constitution.

16. Membership or Affiliation may be withdrawn if the Member or Affiliate

16.1 fails to maintain the conditions that allowed its initial admission, as set out in this Constitution; or

16.2 does not fulfil the obligations set out in the Constitution; or

16.3 acts in the Network’s name without authorisation; or

16.4 misrepresents its association with the Network as implying any level of recognition (beyond the criteria that allowed its admission to the Network); or

16.5 on a recommendation of the Board.

VI. Governing Bodies

17. The governing bodies of the Network are the General Assembly and the Board of Directors.

VII. The General Assembly

18. The General Assembly is the senior policy and decision-making body of the Network. It is composed of Full and Associate Members of the Network, each represented by one nominated person.

19. The President of the Network shall preside over meetings of the General Assembly. In the President’s absence, the Vice-President shall preside. In the absence of both the President and Vice-President, the Board shall elect one of the other Directors to preside.

20. The General Assembly shall hold an Ordinary Meeting at least once every year. The Secretary of the Network will convene the meeting at least twenty one days prior to the meeting. Meetings may be held electronically.

21. The General Assembly may, by decision of the Board, or at the request of at least 10% of the Full Members, hold an Extraordinary General Meeting.

22. The responsibilities of the General Assembly are to

22.1 elect the President and seven other members of the Board of Directors;

22.2 establish the levels of the annual subscription and any other contribution to be paid by members;

22.3 consider and approve the reports of the President and the Secretary;

22.4 consider and approve the Network’s financial statements;

22.5 establish the courses of action and make the decisions or recommendations necessary for the satisfactory operation of the Network, in the framework of the Constitution;

22.6 approve the organisers of the next regular Conference or Forum of the Network on the proposal of the Board.

23. The members participating in a meeting of the General Assembly constitute a quorum for the meeting.

24. Except as provided in clauses 42, 43 and 47, the decisions of the General Assembly shall be adopted by a simple majority of the members voting.

VIII. The Board of Directors

25. The Board of Directors will manage the general affairs of the Network.

26. The Board of Directors is composed of an elected President, an appointed Secretary, seven elected Directors, up to four co-opted Directors and the immediate Past President.

27. All Directors must be associated with a Full or Associate Member of the Network. At least two thirds of the Directors, including the President, shall be from Full Member organisations. No two of the elected, appointed or co-opted Directors should be from the same member organisation.

28. All elected Directors are elected for a three year period, of which the end coincides with the date of an annual General Assembly.

Any elected Director, including the President, may be elected for no more than two consecutive terms.

29. The Board shall appoint a Secretariat, which must be a Full Member and whose Chief Executive or nominee shall be the Secretary of the Network and a member of the Board ex officio.

30. The Board may co-opt up to four further members, who will be full Directors with full voting rights. The Board will in each case specify the period of co-option, which will normally be to the next Board election date. Co-options may be renewed.

31. The immediate Past President shall serve ex officio as an additional Board member for a period of two years from the date on which s/he ceased to hold office as President, but without voting rights.

32. The Board will elect a Vice-President from within its number.

33. The Board may invite observers to its meetings and proceedings, without right to vote. The Board will in each case specify the period of observership.

34. The Board will meet as necessary. Meetings will be convened by the Secretary and as directed by the President. Meetings may be held electronically. Six members will comprise a quorum.

35. The Board can, as necessary, establish general sub-committees or working groups.

36. The responsibilities of the Board are to

36.1 decide on the admission of members to the Network;

36.2 exclude, upon the recommendation of the President, any member;

36.3 ensure that any specific mandate determined by the General Assembly is executed;

36.4 replace any members of the Board who resign between Ordinary Meetings. When the Board appoints a director to fill an occasional vacancy caused by the departure of an elected director, the appointed director will serve out the term of office of the departing director and is a full director with the same rights and responsibilities as the director they replace;

36.5 take any necessary measures on behalf of the Network between meetings of the General assembly;

36.6 solicit and receive donations and sponsorship on behalf of the Network;

36.7 consider and approve annual accounts within three months of the end of a designated financial year;

36.8 prepare an annual report on finance and activities for the distribution to members within six months of the end of a designated financial year; and

36.9 decide, upon the recommendation of the President, to remove, by a majority vote of the full Board, any Director who does not fulfil the obligations outlined in article 41 and accepted as commitments to INQAAHE upon his or her election to the Board of Directors.

IX. The Officers

37. The President is the senior official representative of the Network with responsibilities to

37.1 preside at the meetings of the General Assembly and the Board;

37.2 carry out any resolutions, decisions or specific mandates set by the General Assembly or the Board;

37.3 execute any function provided for in this Constitution;

37.4 in the event of an equality of votes to cast the deciding vote; and

37.5 assume other responsibilities, as agreed by the Board, not provided for in the Constitution.

38. The Vice-President acts on behalf of the President as appropriate.

39. The Secretary is responsible for the management and administration of the Network, specifically to

39.1 keep the Network’s files and minutes;

39.2 arrange for the Network’s publications;

39.4 prepare the annual reports;

39.5 prepare, organise and convene the Network’s meetings;

39.6 prepare, organise and convene the Board’s meetings; and

39.7 collect fees and subscriptions;

39.8 assume other responsibilities, as agreed by the Board, not provided for in this Constitution.

40. The Treasurer is selected by the Board and is responsible for the finances of the Network, specifically to

40.1 present and comment on the Network’s financial statements to the Board and the General Assembly;

40.2 oversee the preparation of budgets; and

40.3 propose subscription rates for recommendation to the General Assembly.

41. All Directors are expected to represent the Network by

41.1 maintaining relations with other similar associations;

41.2 promoting the work of the Network;

41.3 contributing to Board discussions;

41.4 carrying out regular work for the network;

41.5 involvement in working groups; and

41.6 carrying out any specific mandates of the General Assembly, the Board, or the President within the terms of this Constitution.

X. Dispute Resolution

42. Any disputes over the interpretation of this Constitution shall be resolved by simple majority vote of Full Members at a General Assembly.

XI. Amendment to the Constitution

43. The Constitution may only be amended by a vote of Full Members at a General Assembly (whether held in person or electronically).

Amendments require the agreement of two-thirds majority of those participating in the vote. Twenty one days’ notice will be given of proposed changes to the Constitution. The quorum will be 30% of the Full Members of the Network.

XII. Registration

44. The Network was registered, under the Incorporated Societies Act 1908, on the 9th day of February 1999 with the Registrar of Incorporated Societies in New Zealand.

XIII. Networks

45. The Network may recognise and support regional networks and may regulate its relationship with such networks.

XIV. Affiliation

46. The Network (in support of the purposes set out in II above) and on the decision of the General assembly may associate through affiliation or otherwise with UNESCO or with other international bodies.

XV. Dissolution

47. The Network may be dissolved by a two-thirds majority of voting Full Members present at a General Assembly.

48. Any assets of the Network at its dissolution shall be passed to UNESCO for work in higher education, unless otherwise decided by the General Assembly.

Revised July 2013. As agreed electronically by an Extraordinary Meeting of the General Assembly.