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.
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
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.
8. The Network has two categories of membership, Full and Associate.
8.1 Full Members are organisations responsible for assuring the academic quality of post-secondary institutions or education programmes other than their own, such as:
evaluation agencies and similar organisations; and
those bodies responsible for the external quality assurance of such agencies.
8.2 Associate Members are 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
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 exclude, on the recommendation of the Board, any member;
22.3 establish the levels of the annual subscription and any other contribution to be paid by members;
22.4 consider and approve the reports of the President and the Secretary;
22.5 consider and approve the Network’s financial statements;
22.6 establish the courses of action and make the decisions or recommendations
necessary for the satisfactory operation of the Network, in the framework of the
22.7 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 shall be from Full Member organisations. No two of the elected, appointed or co-opted Directors should be from the same member organisation.
28. The elected Directors are elected for a two year period, which will coincide with the dates of the annual General Assembly. Any elected Director, including the President, may be elected for no more than three 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. In the event that persons who are not members of the Board hold the positions of Journal Editor, Treasurer, Convenor/Chair of the biennial conference Local Organising Committee or Convenor/Chair of the biennial members forum, the Board may, at its complete discretion, invite such persons to participate in the meetings and proceedings of the Board as observers, without a vote. The Board will in each case specify the period of observership, which will normally be to the next Board election date or until the person ceases to hold the relevant position, whichever occurs first.
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 recommend to the General Assembly the exclusion of a member from the Network;
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
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; and
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.
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
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;
39.3 maintain the Network’s databases;
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
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
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.
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.
45. The Network may recognise and support regional networks and may regulate its relationship with such networks.
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.
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 September 2010. As agreed electronically by an Extraordinary Meeting of the General Assembly.