Rules governing the affairs of
THE FINNISH ACADEMY OF SCIENCE AND LETTERS
approved by its Autumn Meeting on November 9 2020 and ratified by the Finnish National Board of Patents and Registration on November 23 2020.
1 § Aims
(1) The aims of the Finnish Academy of Science and Letters (referred to below as ”the Academy”) are to promote scientific and academic research, to serve as a bond between those engaged in such research at a high level in order to increase scholarly interaction and to encourage use of the results of this research for decision-making purposes within society at large.
(2) The Academy shall pursue these aims by arranging meetings and training courses at which papers are presented and discussions held, issuing statements of opinion and proposals for action, making its opinions known on questions concerned with research and the status and functions of research staff and on current affairs within civil society, editing, publishing and distributing scientific and other academic publications, supporting those who perform research, directing capable persons towards participation in such research and providing expert advisory services based on a broad and exhaustive overview of existing research and consultation with acknowledged experts.
(3) The Academy’s place of residence is Helsinki.
2 § Division into sections and groups
The Academy shall be divided into two sections, of Science and the Humanities. These in turn can be divided into groups for example according to the disciplines they represent. The names of the groups and their disciplines shall be decided on at statutory meetings of the Academy or at extraordinary meetings called for this purpose.
3 § Members
The Academy shall have ordinary members, external members and honorary members.
4 § Qualifications for membership and grounds for dismissal
(1) Ordinary members shall be of Finnish nationality or resident in Finland and external members of foreign nationality. All members shall be of proven excellence in their own field of academic research.
(2) The Academy may terminate the membership of any person who has been found guilty of acting dishonestly within the academic community.
5 § Membership numbers
The numbers of members to be elected to each section shall be decided upon at a statutory or extraordinary meeting of the Academy.
6 § Appointment of honorary members
An especially meritorious researcher or patron of academic study may be invited to be an honorary member of the Academy.
7 § Voting rights
Only ordinary members and honorary members shall be entitled to vote at Academy meetings.
8 § Election of new members
(1) Each section shall have a Selection Committee for the choosing of new members. This committee shall consist of eight (8) members and shall be representative of the branches of science and learning covered by the section. The committee members shall be nominated by the Academy’s Autumn Meeting for a term of four (4) years such that one fourth of its members shall change each year.
(2) A written proposal with justifications shall be submitted with respect to each proposed new ordinary or external member by at least two existing ordinary members or honorary members.
(3) The Selection Committee for each section shall consider the proposals for ordinary and external members in the light of the permitted number of new members laid down for the section under §5 above and place its recommendations before a meeting of the section to be held at least two weeks before the Academy’s Spring Meeting.
(4) Nominations for new ordinary or external members are required to have the approval of two-thirds of the members present at the meeting of the section concerned and thereafter a two-thirds majority of those present at the Spring Meeting.
9 § Membership fees
The Academy will not expect its members to pay any membership fee.
10 § Governing board
(1) The Academy shall have a governing board to represent it and look after its affairs.
(2) The governing board shall consist of nine (9) members: the Academy’s chairman and vice-chairman, who will also act as chairman and vice-chairman of the board, respectively, the treasurer, the secretaries of the two sections and four other members.
(3) The term of office shall be two calendar years for the Academy chairman and vice-chairman, five calendar years for the treasurer and the secretaries of the sections and one year for the other members, who may be re-elected annually to serve for a total of three years.
(4) The governing board shall be quorate when either the chairman or the vice-chairman and at least four other members are present. If both the chairman and vice-chairman are absent, the meeting shall be quorate if at least six members are present.
(5) Documents may be signed on the Academy’s behalf by any two together from among the chairman, vice-chairman and secretary-general, or alternatively any two board members together if authorized to do so by the board. The board may also authorize the treasurer or secretary-general alone to sign documents on the Academy’s behalf.
(6) The governing board is obliged to look after the Academy’s affairs with due care and diligence and in accordance with the law and with the Academy’s rules and decisions. It shall ensure that the Academy’s accounts are kept as required by law and that its finances are managed in a reliable manner. It shall decide on any sale, exchange or mortgaging of Academy property and on the distribution of grants and scholarships in accordance with the rules of the foundations and funds concerned and with the Academy’s decisions.
11 § The chairman and vice-chairman
The chairman and vice-chairman of the Academy shall be elected from each section alternately for a term of two years and shall also serve as chairmen of their respective sections. A member who has been chairman for two years cannot be re-elected immediately to that position.
12 § The secretary-general
The Academy shall also have a secretary-general, to be appointed and dismissed by the governing board. The secretary-general shall be responsible for placing business before the governing board and for putting the board’s decisions into effect.
13 § Other officials
The treasurer and the secretaries of the two sections shall be appointed from among the Academy’s ordinary members for a term of five years and for not more than two consecutive terms. If an official is incapable of completing his or her term of office, the governing board shall appoint a replacement for the period up to the next Autumn Meeting.
14 § Publishing activities
(1) The Academy shall publish a Year Book and edit various series of scientific publications.
(2) There shall be a publishing committee responsible to the governing board to look after the Academy’s publishing activities.
(3) The publishing committee shall consist of a chairman and vice-chairman, appointed by the governing board for a term of five years at a time, together with the editors of the Academy’s various series of publications and the secretary-general. The treasurer may also attend meetings of the publishing committee.
15 § Property management
(1) Management of the Academy’s properties and assets shall be in the hands of the governing board, the treasurer and a property management committee.
(2) The property management committee shall be appointed by the governing board from among its own members. In addition it may appoint one or more expert advisors in financial matters to the committee. Meetings of the property management committee may be summoned by the committee’s chairman, the secretary-general or the treasurer.
16 § Subject groups
(1) Each group of members defined by the object of their research and academic interests shall choose a chairman, vice-chairman and secretary from among its number for a term of five calendar years. A group chairman cannot be re-elected for the next five-year term.
(2) If any of the positions mentioned in clause 1 above should become vacant before the end of the five-year term of office it shall be filled for the remainder of the term.
17 § Auditing of the accounts
(1) An auditor and deputy auditor shall be appointed to inspect the Academy’s accounts and administration for each calendar year. Both the auditor and deputy auditor should be accountants approved by the Central Chamber of Commerce.
(2) The Academy’s financial year shall be concurrent with the calendar year. A statement of accounts shall be prepared before 15th March in the following year for submission to the auditor, who shall present a written auditor’s report to the Academy’s Spring Meeting.
18 § Academy meetings
The Academy’s meetings may be either statutory or extraordinary ones. The statutory meetings shall be the Spring and Autumn Meetings.
(2) An extraordinary general meeting of the Academy may be summoned by the governing board on its own initiative, by a decision taken in a plenary meeting of the Academy or if at least 20 ordinary members or one tenth (1/10) of the members entitled to vote demand this of the governing board for the discussion of a particular issue.
(3) The Academy chairman, or in his or her absence the vice-chairman, shall act as chairman of a statutory or extraordinary general meeting of the Academy. If both are absent the meeting shall elect a chairman from among the members present.
19 § Matters to be discussed at statutory meetings
(1) The Spring Meeting, to be held in April of each year:
1) shall hear the Academy’s annual report, the statement of accounts and the auditor’s report for the preceding calendar year;
2) shall decide upon approving the annual report, confirming the statement of accounts, granting the governing board discharge from financial liability and the taking of any measures arising out of the discussion of the Academy’s administration and accounts;
3) shall elect new members to the Academy; and
4) shall discuss other matters as detailed in the agenda for the meeting.
(2) The Autumn Meeting, to be held in October or November of each year:
1) shall elect persons to occupy from the beginning of the following calendar year the annually renewable positions of ordinary members of the board, the offices of auditor and deputy auditor and the positions of Academy chairman, vice-chairman and treasurer and the secretaryships of the sections on the completion of the respective terms of office;
2) shall ratify the budget and plan of activities for the coming calendar year; and
3) shall discuss other matters as detailed in the agenda for the meeting.
(3) Votes shall take place by secret ballot if so demanded. In the event of a tie the chairman’s vote shall decide, except in the election of persons for office, when lots shall be drawn.
(4) If any of the positions mentioned in point 1 of clause 2 above should have become vacant before the end of the term of office, it should be filled for the remainder of that term at the Autumn Meeting.
20 § Notice of meetings
Notice of Academy meetings should be sent to members by either personal letter or e-mail dispatched ten (10) days before the meeting or by an announcement posted on the Academy’s website ten (10) days before the meeting.
21 § Alterations to the rules
Any decision to alter these rules shall be taken on the strength of at least a two-thirds majority of the votes cast in two meetings of the Academy with an interval of at least two weeks between them, the second being a statutory meeting. The proposed alteration to the regulations should be specifically mentioned in the invitation or agenda for such a meeting.
22 § Termination of the Academy’s activities
Any decision to terminate the activities of the Academy shall be taken on the initiative of the governing board in the manner laid down in paragraph 21 §, except that there should be an interval of at least two months between the two meetings. It should also be decided at the last meeting of the Academy to dispose of the Academy’s remaining assets by donating them to a cause committed to the furtherance of scientific and academic study in Finland.