ANSA Constitution

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1.              Name

2.              Definitions

3.              Overview and Objectives

4.              Membership

5.              Executive and Committee

6.              AGMs and Elections

7.              Changes to ANSA’s Structure, Constitution, Grants, or Prizes


1.             NAME

1.1.         The name of the network is the ‘Australian Network of Student Anthropologists’ (henceforth referred to as ANSA).

2.             DEFINITIONS

2.1.         ‘the AAS’ refers to the Australian Anthropological Society.

2.2.         ‘AGM’ refers to ANSA’s Annual General Meeting.

2.3.         ‘the Executive’ refers to ANSA’s Chairperson, Secretary, and Web Officer.

2.4.         ‘the Committee’ refers to ANSA’s University Representatives.

2.5.         ‘Office Bearers’ are those elected to the Executive or the Committee.

2.6.         ‘members’ refers to members of ANSA.

2.7.         ‘AAS affiliated members’ are ANSA members who are paid members of the AAS.

2.8.         ‘non-AAS affiliates’ are ANSA members who are not members of the AAS.


3.1.         ANSA is an initiative of anthropology students and early career researchers (primarily postgraduate students).

3.2.         ANSA was established in 2005 to encourage interaction between these groups. In 2010, it took on a new structure, dividing it into an Executive and a Committee.

3.3.         Within the AAS, ANSA’s purpose is to organise the selection and election of a representative to the Executive Committee of the AAS: the ANSA Chairperson. The ANSA Chairperson has a non-voting place on the AAS Executive. They are involved in discussions and consultations with the AAS, including regular phone link-ups, and represent the concerns of postgraduate students within the AAS.

3.4.         The AAS also funds several of ANSA’s initiatives. These include the AAS/ANSA Postgraduate Travel Grants and the Robyn Wood Travel Grant, which are funded annually to facilitate the attendance of AAS affiliated ANSA members at the AAS Annual Conference. The AAS has also funded the AAS/ANSA Photography Competition.

3.5.         ANSA’s general aims are to:

3.5.1.     Share knowledge, experience, and support amongst student and early career anthropologists by fostering a community of people who have shared interests.

3.5.2.     Provide a voice for student interests and encourage student participation within the AAS, with specific attention paid to the needs of postgraduate students enrolled at Australian Universities.

3.5.3.     Provide resources and information for student and early career researcher anthropologists.

3.6.         ANSA is not incorporated and has no financial dealings.

4.             MEMBERSHIP

4.1.         Members may be AAS affiliates or non-AAS affiliates.

4.2.         Listed members are those who have joined ANSA in the following ways:

4.2.1.     Those who have completed ANSA’s online membership form.

4.2.2.     Those applying for AAS membership who have checked the application form’s box to become an ANSA member, and whose membership was approved in 2013 or later, will automatically be listed as ANSA members following the approval of their AAS membership.

4.2.3.     Applicants for AAS membership who checked the box to become an ANSA member, and whose membership was accepted <em “mso-bidi-font-style:=”” normal”=””>in 2012 or earlier, are not currently listed as ANSA members. To become members, they should complete the ANSA online membership form.

4.2.4.     Liking ANSA’s Facebook Page does not constitute membership of ANSA.

4.3.         ANSA has no requirements for membership, although its resources and activities are directed at anthropology students and early career researchers working (currently or previously) within Australian universities or institutions.

4.4.         Benefits of AAS affiliate and non-AAS affiliate membership include:

4.4.1.     Being able to nominate for positions on the ANSA Executive or Committee. That is, Chairperson, Secretary, Web Officer, or University Representative.

4.4.2.     Being eligible to participate in the ANSA Postgraduate Panel during the AAS Annual Conference.

4.4.3.     Being eligible to appear in ANSA’s profile of the month.

4.4.4.     The free use of ANSA’s media resources, including the monthly email to members.

4.5.         Additional benefits of AAS affiliate membership include:

4.5.1.     Being eligible to apply for an AAS/ANSA Postgraduate Travel Grants or Robyn Wood Travel Grant. Eligibility is subject to the satisfaction of certain conditions, as outlined in the Travel Grant application form.

4.5.2.     Being eligible to apply for other AAS-funded prizes and grants, such as the AAS/ANSA Photography Competition, subject to the satisfaction of certain conditions.

4.6.         Those wishing to cancel or update their membership—for example, to alter their membership category from AAS affiliate to non-AAS affiliate, or vice versa—should email the ANSA executive.


5.1.         The Executive and Committee are elected annually at the AGM.

5.2.         The Executive and Committee should be made up of postgraduate and undergraduate anthropology students. It may also include early career researchers who are working as independent researchers or within Australian universities, government departments, or organisations.

5.3.         Although there are no rules regarding eligibility, it is expected that the majority of ANSA Office Bearers will be postgraduate students.

5.4.         The Executive comprises the Chairperson, Secretary, and Web Officer.

5.4.1.     Each member of the ANSA Executive agrees that some of the information in which they share may be of a sensitive or private nature and each office bearer therefore agrees to keep such information confidential.

5.4.2.     The Chairperson is responsible for the following:         Representing anthropology students and early career researchers (specifically postgraduates) on the AAS Executive Committee in a non-voting capacity.         Liaising with the AAS Executive Committee with regard to relevant postgraduate issues or concerns and AAS-funded grants or prizes.         Updating the AAS Executive Committee about any changes to the Executive’s Office Bearers.         Communicating with the ANSA Secretary, in a timely manner, non-confidential and relevant information from AAS meetings and communications (such as emails).

5.4.3.     The Chairperson and Secretary are responsible for the following duties, many of which may be divided as agreed. Clauses and, however, should be performed by both the Chairperson and the Secretary. If this is not possible, the Chairperson should perform these duties in collaboration with the Web Officer and/or a member of the Committee.         Organising the ANSA Postgraduate PanelAGM, and a postgraduate social event at the AAS Annual Conference.         In conjunction with the AAS Executive, reviewing and determining the conditions of grants and prizes.         Organising, judging, and distributing grants and prizes, in conjunction with the AAS Executive where necessary.         Liaising with the ANSA Committee and with ANSA members, including regularly monitoring the official ANSA Executive email account and responding to communications therein as required.         Maintaining the ANSA membership list.         Organising, distributing, and maintaining ANSA’s media resources, including the monthly email to members, the profile of the month, and the Facebook Page.         Advising the Web Officer on necessary alterations to ANSA’s web content.         Composing ANSA reports for the AAS newsletter. Of particular importance is the newsletter following the AAS annual conference, which includes the ANSA Chairperson’s Report and a summary of the ANSA AGM.         Presiding over the election of the Executive and Committee for the following term. Under certain circumstances—for instance, if both the Chairperson and Secretary are nominating themselves for positions on the ANSA Executive or Committee—another Executive or Committee member may perform this function.

5.4.4.     The Web Officer is responsible for:         Maintaining ANSA’s websiteFacebook Page, email account, and any other online resources, such as the ANSA Exec Dropbox account.

5.5.         The Committee is made up of University Representatives, who support the committee in their duties, are conduits for information at their institutions, and assist the ANSA Executive by encouraging ANSA membership and involvement within their institutions. The University Representatives’ specific duties are as follows:

5.5.1.     Making themselves known as their university’s ANSA representative.

5.5.2.     Answering questions about what ANSA is and how to join, distributing information related to ANSA, and seeking input from student and early career researcher anthropologists in their universities (primarily postgraduates).

5.5.3.     Encouraging ANSA membership.

5.5.4.     There are several optional activities in which ANSA strongly encourages its University Representatives to participate. These activities include providing the ANSA Executive with information on postgraduate events, networks, scholarships, or jobs of interest to members, as well as giving any other feedback to the Executive, supporting the Executive’s initiatives, and/or assisting them with the judging of grants or prizes.

5.6.         It is also expected that all Office Bearers will be ANSA members. However, in exceptional circumstances candidates may nominate for these positions on the understanding that they will join ANSA in the seven days following their election to office. Should they fail to do so, the outgoing ANSA Executive will inform the candidate who received the second highest number of votes that their nomination for the role of Chairperson/Secretary/Web Officer/University Representative has been successful, and that candidate will immediately take office. In the event that this candidate is also not an ANSA member and fails to become one in the seven days following their acceptance of the role, they will also be required to vacate the role, and so on. If no other candidates have nominated for the role, then the position will be declared open and the procedure described in clause 6.6.3. will be enacted. In order to prevent this from occurring, however, it is strongly recommended that the outgoing Executive provides a membership sign-up sheet or similar facility at the AGM.

6.             AGMS AND ELECTIONS

6.1.         The ANSA AGM is held at the AAS Annual Conference.

6.2.         During the AGM, the outgoing Executive reports on its activities, undertaken during the preceding year. Members in attendance discuss future activities that ANSA might undertake, and elections are held.

6.3.         The Executive and Committee are elected during the AGM. If only one nomination is received, this results in the automatic election of that candidate.

6.4.         Procedures for the nomination of candidates are as follows:

6.4.1.     A call for nominations should be circulated by email to the ANSA membership and advertised on its official website and Facebook Page no later than one month prior to the AGM.

6.4.2.     Members of the outgoing Executive and Committee are eligible to nominate as candidates for the incoming committee. They should not, however, preside over the vote for the office(s) for which they nominate.

6.4.3.     Candidates may nominate themselves prior to the AGM. A record of advance nominations will be kept by the outgoing Chairperson or Secretary.  To allow sufficient time for administrative processing a deadline for the acceptance of nominations may be set and advertised by the Executive.

6.4.4.     Candidates may nominate themselves even if they are unable to attend the Annual Conference, and may ask someone in attendance to speak on their behalf if desired.

6.4.5.     Candidates may nominate themselves during the AGM.

6.4.6.     Candidates wishing to speak prior to the election of the position they have nominated for may do so, although this is not required. Any speeches by candidates should be kept brief.

6.4.7.     Candidates may nominate for more than one position, yet they may only hold one position on the Executive. For example, a person may nominate as a candidate for both Chairperson and Secretary, but if they are elected to the position of Chairperson their name will then immediately be removed from the list of candidates for Secretary.

6.4.8.     Elected members of the Executive may also nominate for the position of University Representative.

6.5.         Procedures for the election of candidates are as follows:

6.5.1.     Elections are declared open.

6.5.2.     The responsibilities associated with each of the positions are described.

6.5.3.     The role to be voted upon is announced, together with the list of nominees. Those attending the AGM may nominate themselves for a position at this time.

6.5.4.     Voting is conducted by a show of hands, and candidates with the largest amount of votes will be elected to their nominated positions.

6.5.5.     Should there be a tie, those candidates with equal numbers of votes shall leave the room and the Chairperson or Secretary shall again conduct the election.

6.5.6.     ANSA is unable to offer those who are not present at the AGM a vote.

6.5.7.     Positions will be voted on in the following order: Chairperson, Secretary, Web Officer, and, finally, University Representatives.

6.5.8.     If two nominees wish to share a role, they may do so. However, because of the nature and requirements of the role of Chairperson, particularly with regard to the Chairperson’s role on the AAS Executive Committee, this is not possible in the case of the Chairperson.

6.5.9.     The outgoing ANSA Executive will communicate the details of the incoming ANSA Executive and Committee to ANSA members, and to the Executive and the Committee itself. They will also notify members, the Executive, and the Committee of any initial changes to the elected Executive and Committee (see clause 5.6.). Further, the outgoing Executive will inform the AAS Secretary and the AAS Administrator of the names of the incoming ANSA Chairperson, Secretary, and Web Officer.

6.6.         Procedures for positions that remain or become vacant following the election are as follows:

6.6.1.     Positions that remain vacant following the AGM will remain open for nominations until they are filled.

6.6.2.     This includes the position of University Representative for any unrepresented university.

6.6.3.     If any Executive positions remain unfilled, or become vacant within three months of the election, ANSA will do the following:         Advertise the opening through its media resources.         Following any nomination for an Executive role, the candidate’s name will be advertised for seven days.         If there are no further nominations, the sole nominating candidate will be automatically elected.         If more than one person nominates for the position, the Executive and Committee will hold a vote. The candidates will be announced and the Executive and Committee will be given seven days to vote via email or another suitable medium, such as Skype.         After the seven day period, the candidate with the greatest number of votes will be elected, regardless of whether all Executive and Committee members have cast their vote.         In the event of a tie a second election will be held.         Nominations for University Representatives do not require this procedure, and may be accepted immediately if not filled at the AGM.

6.6.4.     If, more than three months into their term, a member of the Executive steps down from their position as Chairperson, Secretary, or Web Officer, ANSA will do the following:         The remaining Executive and Committee members may appoint a replacement from among the Executive or Committee to fill the role. This may be done without a formal election.         If the position of Chairperson has been vacated, it is generally expected (though not required) that the Secretary will take over this role and that the role of Secretary will be filled by another member of the Executive or Committee, if possible.         If more than one Executive/Committee member nominates for a vacated role, the Executive and Committee will then vote on the candidates, and the candidate with the greatest amount of votes will take on the position (see clauses to for full details on electoral procedures).


7.1.         Major changes to ANSA’s structure or constitution, or to the grants and prizes disseminated by ANSA, should be agreed upon by the majority of Executive. Where this is not possible (for example, where several positions remain unfilled), the proposed changes should be agreed upon by the majority of Executive and Committee members who respond to the proposed changes within fourteen days. Example of major changes include:

7.1.1.     Changes to ANSA’s functions, activities and/or objectives.

7.1.2.     Changes to ANSA’s membership categories or the conditions/requirements of membership.

7.1.3.     Changes to the structure of the Executive or Committee.

7.1.4.     Changes to the roles of Executive and Committee members.

7.1.5.     Changes to voting procedures.

7.1.6.     Changes to the eligibility conditions of grants or prizes.

7.2.         When grants or prizes are funded by the AAS, changes to the eligibility conditions of ANSA’s grants or prizes may require the approval of the AAS’ Executive Committee.