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IFLA Statutes

The Statutes were adopted at the IFLA Council meeting in Québec City, Canada,

14 August 2008.

The text of these IFLA Statutes has been translated into Dutch, and the notarial

deed of the amendment of the Statutes of IFLA shall be executed in the Dutch language, to comply with Dutch law. Inevitably, differences may occur in translating this text into Dutch, and if so, the Dutch text will by law prevail.

On 20 October 2008, the notarial deed has been signed and following the statutes have been registered with the Chamber of Commerce in The Hague.


1.1 The name of the federation with full legal capacity (“vereniging met volledige rechtsbevoegdheid”) is The International Federation of Library Associations and Institutions. It is referred to throughout these Statutes as “the Federation”.

1.2 The acronym by which the Federation is known is: IFLA.

1.3 The Federation has its headquarters in The Hague, the Netherlands.

1.4 The Federation is incorporated in accordance with the laws of the Netherlands.

Article 2 PURPOSE

2.1 The Federation is an independent, international, non-governmental, not-for-profit organization, which advances the interests of library and information associations, libraries and information services, librarians and the communities they serve throughout the world.

2.2 To achieve its purpose, the Federation seeks:

2.2.1 to promote high standards of delivery of library and information services and professional practice, as well as the accessibility, protection, and preservation of documentary cultural heritage. This is done through the enhancement of professional education, the development of professional standards, the dissemination of best practice and the advancement of relevant scientific and professional knowledge;

2.2.2 to encourage widespread understanding of the value and importance of high quality library and information services in the public, private and voluntary sectors;

2.2.3 to represent the interests of its Members throughout the world.

Version October 2008 1

2.3 In pursuing its purpose, the Federation shall seek to demonstrate the following core


2.3.1 the endorsement of the principles of freedom of access to information, ideas and works of imagination and freedom of expression embodied in Article 19 of the Universal Declaration of Human Rights;

2.3.2 the belief that people, communities and organizations need universal and equitable access to information, ideas and works of imagination for their social, educational, cultural, democratic and economic well-being;

2.3.3 the conviction that delivery of high quality library and information services helps guarantee that access;

2.3.4 the commitment to enable all Members of the Federation to engage in, and benefit from, its activities without regard to citizenship, disability, ethnic origin, gender, geographical location, language, political philosophy, race or religion.

2.4 As an international professional organization, the Federation shall not participate or intervene in any way, including the publication or distribution of statements, in political campaigns on behalf of, or in opposition to, any candidate for public office.


3.1 The financial year of the Federation is the calendar year from 1 January to 31 December in each year.


4.1 The Governing Board shall admit the members of the Federation, who are referred to throughout these Statutes as “Members”. Members may only be associations, institutions and individuals as mentioned in Articles 4.2, 4.3, 4.4, 4.5 and 4.6, that endorse the purposes of the Federation and undertake to comply with these Statutes.

4.2 National Association Members

4.2.1 National Associations of librarians and information professionals and associations of other organizations concerned with the delivery of information services, whose memberships are national in character and whose purposes are in accordance with those of the Federation may be admitted as National Association Members.

4.2.2 In countries where there is no library and information association, but where the interests of the library and information community are represented by a single body, this body may be admitted as a National Association Member.

–  –  –

4.3.1 International associations of librarians, libraries and library and information services whose purposes are in accordance with those of the Federation may be admitted as International Association Members.

4.4 Other Association Members 4.4.1 Associations of librarians and information professionals whose purposes are in accordance with those of the Federation but whose geographical remit is less than that of an independent state may be admitted as Other Association Members.

4.5 Institutional Members 4.5.1 Libraries and information services in the public, private and voluntary sectors, departments of library and information studies and other organizations and agencies whose purposes are in accordance with the purposes of the Federation may be admitted as Institutional Members.

4.6 Honorary Fellows 4.6.1 Persons, including former Presidents of the Federation, who have given distinguished service in the profession of library and information service, or who have made an outstanding contribution to the work of the Federation, may be admitted as Honorary Fellows.

4.7 Membership is not transferable.

4.8 The members of Association Members, referred to in Articles 4.2, 4.3 and 4.4, and the employees and associates of Institutional Members shall have the right to participate in the work of the Federation and to serve as members of all the units of the Federation.

4.9 An association or institution that is refused membership does not have the right of appeal to the General Assembly.


5.1 Membership of the Federation may be terminated by decease, dissolution, resignation, exclusion or expulsion.

5.2 A Member may resign at any time by giving written notice to the Secretary General.

5.2.1 Unless otherwise determined by the Governing Board, the resignation shall take effect at the end of the financial year.

5.2.2 Membership may however be terminated with immediate effect if the Member in question can no longer reasonably be required to remain in membership.

–  –  –

5.2.4 The amendment of financial rights and obligations shall not entitle a Member to give notice to terminate the membership with immediate effect.

5.3 The Governing Board may exclude a Member:

–  –  –

5.4 The Governing Board may expel a Member if that Member has acted contrary to the Statutes or the Rules of Procedure, or should the Federation have been unreasonably disadvantaged by the Member in question. A two-thirds majority of the votes cast shall be required for the decision to expel a Member.1

5.5 A Member that has been expelled by decision of the Governing Board shall receive a notice in writing from the Secretary General specifying the grounds upon which the decision was made.

5.5.1 The Member may appeal against the expulsion. Any such appeal shall be made to the Secretary General within one month of receiving the notification of expulsion. The Secretary General shall convey the appeal to a standing Appeals Panel as mentioned in Article 5.5.2. The standing Appeals Panel shall make the final decision on the expulsion. For the period during which any appeal is underway and pending the appeal, the Member in question shall be suspended.

5.5.2 At intervals of no less than three years the Governing Board shall appoint a standing Appeals Panel of Members who are not themselves members of the Governing Board, to hear appeals against expulsion of Members. The Governing Board shall determine Rules of Procedure for the composition and functioning of the standing Appeals Panel.

5.6 A Member that has resigned or been excluded or expelled shall be liable to pay any arrears in fees and the fees for the full financial year in which resignation, exclusion or expulsion takes place, unless the Governing Board determines otherwise.

1 The text of 5.4.1 in the version endorsed by the IFLA Council on 14 August 2008 has been incorporated as the last sentence in article 5.4 – as required by Dutch law - in both the Dutch and English texts.

–  –  –

5.8 A Member that is in arrears with its financial obligations to the Federation for a period of time as set out in the Rules of Procedure, may be suspended by the Secretary General for the period and under the conditions and restrictions that are set out in the Rules of Procedure.


6.1 The Governing Board may give affiliate status to individuals, institutions and organizations that support the purposes of the Federation and may assess a fee or other conditions as given in the Rules of Procedure.

6.1.1 The Governing Board may withdraw affiliate status if the required fee is in arrears. A simple majority of the votes cast is required for the decision.

6.1.2 The Governing Board may withdraw affiliate status if the affiliate has acted contrary to the Statutes or purposes of the Federation. A two-thirds majority of votes cast shall be required for such a decision.

6.2 The Governing Board may give consultative status to international or multinational organizations in allied fields of interest, with which the Federation wishes to establish relationships in order to further the purposes of the Federation.

6.2.1 The Governing Board may withdraw consultative status from an organization if that organization has acted contrary to the Statutes or purposes of the Federation. A two-thirds majority of the votes cast shall be required for such a decision.

6.3 Affiliates and organizations with consultative status may participate in the activities of the Federation as specified in the Rules of Procedure.

6.4 Affiliates and organizations with consultative status may attend and speak at General Assemblies, but not vote.


7.1 Every Member must pay an annual membership fee in accordance with a schedule of fees determined by the General Assembly.

7.2 A Member that has been suspended in accordance with Article 5.8 shall not be entitled to exercise any rights or to receive any of the Federation’s services, unless the Governing Board makes an exception.

7.3 The Federation may accept donations in monetary or other form for aims that do not conflict with the purposes and values of the Federation.

–  –  –

7.4.1 in the conduct of the charitable, scientific or educational activities that are necessary to pursue the purposes of the Federation;

7.4.2 as payment of reasonable compensation for services rendered, including reimbursement of costs incurred;

–  –  –


8.1 The General Assembly is the highest governance level of the Federation and has four

key functions:

8.1.1 to determine the purposes and values of the Federation;

8.1.2 to approve and amend the Statutes;

8.1.3 to determine the conditions of membership;

8.1.4 to receive and approve the annual financial report and accounts.

8.2 Annually, and no later than six months after the close of the Federation’s year, unless the General Assembly extends this period by five months at most on the grounds of special circumstances, a General Assembly shall be held, which shall deal with, inter alia, the annual financial report and the annual accounts.

8.3 The Governing Board may convene an extraordinary General Assembly to decide upon matters of urgent and extreme importance, on which decisions cannot be delayed until the next ordinary General Assembly.

8.4 Upon receiving a written request, signed by at least as many Members as shall be authorized to cast one tenth part of the votes in the General Assembly 2, the Governing Board shall convene an extraordinary General Assembly. Such an Assembly shall be held no later than four weeks after the date on which the request is received by the Secretariat. The Secretariat shall send convening notices to all Members entitled to attend, together with the agenda, at least two weeks prior to such an Assembly. Should no response have been given to the aforementioned request within fourteen days the Members submitting the request may themselves convene a meeting.

2 The text of the version endorsed by the IFLA Council on 14 August 2008 has been amended to comply with Dutch legal interpretation. “Required” has been replaced with “authorized” and “of the full membership” has been replaced with “in the General Assembly” in both the Dutch and English texts.

–  –  –

9.1 The date and place of any General Assembly shall be determined by the Governing Board.

9.2 Convening notices, together with the agenda, shall be sent by the Secretariat at least two months prior to the date of the meeting to all Members.

9.3 The Governing Board shall – in accordance with Article 8.2 – submit for approval to the annual General Assembly the accounts for the previous financial year, which shall have been audited by a registered accountant.

9.4 The Governing Board shall submit to the annual General Assembly a report on the fulfilment of the Federation’s purposes during the previous financial year.

9.5 Items that the Members wish to propose for inclusion in the agenda must reach the Secretariat at least three months before the date of the meeting.

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