International Sociocracy Certification Board (ISCB) Policies

Table of Contents

I. Criteria for Initial Certification: Individuals        1

II. Criteria for Recertification: Individuals        2

III. Notification Proposal        3

IV. Recognition of Individual Certification by the International Sociocracy Certification Board (ISCB)        3

V. Recognition of Re-Certification by the International Sociocracy Certification Board (ISCB)        4

VI. Process for Individuals Applying for Certification or Recertification without the support of a certifying agency        5

VII. Recognition of Certifying Agencies        5

VIII. The ISCB        6

IX. The ISCB Website Content        7

X. ISCB management        7

Record of changes to this policy        7

Finances        8

I. Criteria for Initial Certification: Individuals

  1. Ability to explain sociocracy concepts and underlying values
  1. The candidate is able to explain concepts and how those concepts relate to the underlying value that everyone’s voice matters.
  2. “Sociocracy concepts” means decision making by consent, circular organizational structures with double-linking, continuous evolution through feedback, and the common extensions of those basic concepts, as articulated by Gerard Endenburg and subsequent writers.
  1. Experience with implementation with positive feedback
  1. The candidate has the ability to bring an organization from initial contact to use the sociocratic circle-organization method. If the candidate’s experience is with a team of consultants, the candidate must have an active role in the implementation, not just assisting.
  2. The candidate must have led or co-led the establishment of a circle structure in at least two organizations, one of which must have at least three double-linked circles. If the candidate feels that double-linking was not appropriate because of the nature of the organization (e.g., network), then there must be an equivalent alternative form of feedback loop mechanism or process.
  3. The candidate must provide documentation of predominantly positive evaluations of at least the two implementations identified in 2b above.
  4. The candidate’s certification review should include lessons learned from both successes and failures.
  1. Capacity to adapt and/or modify sociocratic patterns.
  1. The candidate is able to creatively adapt and/or modify sociocratic patterns to unique client systems in ways that maintain the values of equivalence and effectiveness.
  2. The candidate's report can describe any adaptations and/or modifications made in usual sociocracy patterns.
  1. Participate in a sociocratic organization
  1. The candidate must participate in a sociocratic organization of at least one circle (that provides feedback to its members) to be and stay certified in order to continually experience themselves as members of a sociocratic environment.
  2. If this is not the case, the candidate must document past experience in a sociocratic organization and identify other means of getting the feedback and perspective typically available to circle members.
  1. Be willing to serve on the certification review panels of new and recertifying candidates.
  2. Detailed instructions for preparing the application for certification are provided in the Report Preparation Guideline.

II. Criteria for Recertification: Individuals

  1. Demonstrate on-going self-development

To maintain certification, individuals must have a sociocratic certification review within three years of their initial certification. Subsequent certifications must take palace within five years of the previous one. The review should include an assessment of the person’s competence in accompanying organizations in implementing sociocracy and their personal knowledge and skills development since the last certification review, including reporting on the following:

  1. Participate in a sociocratic organization
    Same as I.4,a, above.
  2. Have worked in the past five years (three years for the initial re-certification) with at least one implementation customer whose organization consists of at least three circles.
  3. Have times of reflection at least three times a year with other ISCB certified consultants to share what you’ve learned, to seek input for aspects of sociocracy consulting practice that you may be struggling with, and to explore new topics. One of those gatherings can be an ISCB general gathering of certified consultants. The other minimum two meetings must be with at least 2 other certified consultants where each gets at least an hour of focused attention on their sociocracy consulting work. (suggested format link)
  1. Be willing to serve on the certification reviews of new and recertifying candidates.
  2. Previously ISCB-certified individuals who have let their certifications lapse and wish to be recertified must meet the Criteria for Individual Certification as well as the Criteria for Recertification.

III. Notification

Every review done for the purpose of arriving at a recommendation for certification or recertification must be announced by the certifying agency to the list of currently certified consultants maintained by the ICSB at least three weeks before the certification review date with an invitation for feedback. Any supportive or critical feedback regarding the individual's candidacy must be shared via the certifying agency with all members of the certification review meeting, including the candidate, before the event.

IV. Recognition of an Individual Certification by a Certifying Agency that is a member of the International Sociocracy Certification Board (ISCB)        

  1. The certifying agency notifies the International Sociocracy Certification Board (ISCB) via admin@iscb.earth that they have certified an individual according to the standards of the International Board. Every certified consultant shall have their own subfolder in the Certification folder of ISCB that includes the report (which includes all information to make sure the criteria in § I. 1.-6 are fulfilled) prepared by the candidate for the interview and all its attachments as well as the development plan agreed to in the certification review meeting. This report will be available only to the ISCB Board and the Board’s appointed auditor (if any). The report will include a copy of the development plan written in (or translated by the agency into) English. Note: If an individual applies for certification without the support of a certifying agency, the designated mentor performs this notification (see Section VI).
  2. The newly ISCB certified/recertified consultant must register with ISCB through the registration form on the ISCB.earth website. The form will ask such information as:
  1. Name, photo and bio, including writings, services, products, client list, and website links they wish to share, within a limit of 200 words.
  2. Their sociocratic organizational memberships
  3. Date of certification review meeting and names of those in attendance, specifically identifying those individuals who are already certified        
  4. The certification candidate pays a fee of 55€ or $55 earmarked for the ISCB to the certifying agency plus any other fees owed to that agency. The certifying agency will forward the 55€ or $55 to the ISCB at the same time as the notification documentation.
  1. The International Sociocracy Certification Board (ISCB) issues a dated certificate of expertise as a Sociocratic consultant to the individual and posts the documentation about the individual on the ISCB’s website within 30 days of receiving the documentation and payment.
  2. The initial certification is valid for three years from the date on the certificate.

V. Recognition of Re-Certification by the International Sociocracy Certification Board (ISCB)        

  1. The certifying agency notifies the International Sociocracy Certification Board (ISCB) admin@iscb.earth that they have approved an individual for recertification according to the standards of the International Board. Note: If an individual applies for recertification without the support of a certifying agency, then a designated member of the individual’s certification review Circle performs this notification (see Section VI).
  2. The notification includes an update to the documentation about the certification candidate:
  1. In up to two languages: name and bio, including writings, services, products, client list, and website links they wish to share within a limit of 200 words per language.
  2. Their sociocratic organizational memberships, and
  3. Date of recertification meeting and names of those in attendance, specifically identifying those individuals who are already certified.
  4. A copy of the report prepared by the candidate for the certification review meeting and all its attachments as well as the development plan agreed to in the certification review meeting. This report will be available only to the ISCB Board and the Board’s appointed auditor (if any). 
  5. The re-certification candidate pays a fee of 55€ or $55 earmarked for the ISCB to the certifying agency plus any other fees owed to that agency. The certifying agency will forward the 55€ or $55 to the ISCB at the same time as the notification documentation.
  6. The International Sociocracy Certification Board (ISCB) issues a renewed certificate of expertise as a Sociocratic consultant to the individual and posts the documentation about the individual on the ISCB’s website within 30 days of receiving the documentation and payment.
  1. Recertification is valid for five years. Each recertifcation cumulatively adds five years to the date of the initial certification. Certifying agences are responsible for reminding their certified consultants of the due dates for recertification. Individuals seeking to recertify without the support of certifying agency will be reminded three months and one month before the term end of their certification by ISCB’s management agent, Sociocracy For All. Certifications will be considered lapsed if not renewed by 60-days after the certification five year anniversary date, and their name and documentation will be removed from the website. Previously ISCB-certified individuals who have let their certifications lapse and wish to be recertified must meet the Criteria for Individual Certification as well as the Criteria for Recertification.

VI. Process for Individuals Applying for Certification or Recertification without the support of a certifying agency

  1. Assemble a circle of at least three (3) ISCB certified consultants for a certification review. At least one must be identified to serve in the role of  primary mentor. At least two different certifying agencies must be represented among the ICSB certified consultants participating in the certification review meeting.
  2. Each ISCB certified consultant is willing to accept 55€ or $55 for participating in a certification review session. This fee is to be paid directly by the candidate to the ISCB certified consultant.
  3. A request for a certification review for the purpose of determining a recommendation of certification must be sent by the primary mentor to the ISCB via admin@iscb.earth and to each of the participants of the certification review at least four (4) weeks before the event in order for the reviewers to have time to ask questions and give feedback to the candidate for possible improvements. The primary mentor must also forward the request to all certified persons per Section III, above. The request will be accompanied by a report prepared per the Report Preparation Guideline. The primary mentor makes sure the report meets the “Criteria for initial Certification - Individuals”  in this Policy § I, 1.-6. The request and report will be in the common language of the participants in the certification review meeting. The certification review meeting will decide whether to recommend the individual for certification, and approve a development plan. If the candidate is approved for certification, the designated mentor will follow the procedures outlined in Section III, Recognition of Certification by the International Sociocracy Certification Board (ISCB) or IV, Recognition of Re-Certification by the International Sociocracy Certification Board (ISCB).

VII. Recognition of Certifying Agencies

  1. A certifying agency is an organization (a legal entity) that has at least two ISCB certified consultants and has a program for preparing candidates for certification as sociocratic consultants according to the standards of the ISCB. (See Section I. Criteria for Initial Certification: Individuals.)
  2. This program should have a clear description of the concepts and skills required,  e,g., a set of comprehensive reference materials cited as the basis of judgment about a person’s performance.The ISCB Board will maintain a list of recognized source materials on the ISCB website (iscb.earth).
  3. The agency’s policy will require that the mentor and at least one other ISCB certified person will sit on the certification review meeting.
  4. If an agency requests recognition as a certifying agency and does not cite one of the recognized texts as its reference source, then ISCB or its appointed agent will review their reference source material for alignment with acceptable sociocratic practice.
  5. The certifying agency must undergo a certification review of its certification preparation program initially and at least once every three years to be recognized by the ISCB. A certifying agency must demonstrate that its program of preparation for certification adequately prepares candidates to meet the ISCB standards for certification. See standard agenda for meeting to approve an agency as a certifying agency
  6. The ISCB certification review meeting for a certifying agency must include at least two (2) ISCB certified consultants from other certifying agencies. The agency seeking recognition will pay 55€ or $55 directly to the consultants for their participation.
  7. Certifying agencies at least once a year must invite an expert certified by another ISCB agency to observe or participate in the certification review meeting and comment on some part of their certification process. The certifying agency will pay the visiting expert 55€ or $55 for participating in this review..
  8. Certifying agencies may have their own process for deciding if someone is ready for certification. They make sure the candidate's skills and experiences meet the criteria for certification and recertification individuals as written in this policy. They also make sure that in the candidate’s submitted certification report the candidate expresses every criteria of this policy written in I. Criteria for initial Certification - Individuals, point 1.-6., this includes the “Report preparation Guidelines". A certifying organization must itself be sociocratic.
  9. Certifying agencies are acknowledged as such by the ISCB, and contact information about them is available on the ISCB website.
  10. At least one member of every certifying agency must serve on the ISCB. That person must be an ISCB certified consultant.
  11. Certifying agencies will pay annual dues of 55€ or $55 to the ISCB. The ISCB may adjust this amount from time to time.
  12. If a certification review meeting does not consent to recommend the recognition of a certifying agency to the ISCB, the agency in question has the right to appeal to the full ISCB Board.
  13. See Guidelines for Certifying “Certifying Agencies

VIII. The ISCB

  1. The ISCB will include at least one representative from each certifying agency in good standing who is an ISCB certified consultant.
  2. The ISCB will select and include at least two external expert members who may or may not be ISCB certified.
  3. The ISCB has consent rights to members proposed by the participating certifying agencies.
  4. All members will serve staggered two-year terms and may be reappointed for up to three successive terms.
  5. ISCB members will receive an honorarium of 55€ or $55 for each year of service, payable at the end of each completed year of service.
  6. The ISCB will make decisions by consent.
  7. The ISCB will review its policies at least once every three years.

IX. The ISCB Website Content

Aim of website: show the world the certified consultants and certifying agencies and explain the certification process. Specifically:

  1. Who we are (Board members).
  2. Policies of the ISCB.
  3. How to become certified as a consultant.
  4. How to be recognized as a certifying agency.
  5. Links to certifying agencies.
  6. Google map of certified consultants.
  7. Listing of certified consultants with their relevant information.

X. ISCB management 

  1. The fiscal agent for ISCB will be the Institute for Peaceable Communities, the charitable nonprofit that is the parent organization of Sociocracy For All (SoFA).
  2. The ISCB’s management agent will be Sociocracy For All (SoFA). Management activities to include:
  1. ISCB website development and maintenance
  2. Google Drive ISCB dedicated folder
  3. Establish and maintain a bank account for receipt/payment of funds and provide bookkeeping services.
  4. Producing certificates for approved consultants
  5. Respond to communication received at admin@iscb.earth
  6. Send recertification reminders to consultants certified as individuals
  1. SoFA will receive payment for its agent services as determined by the ISCB.
  2. The above agent agreements will be in writing and set for a three year period ending May 2026.
  3. No later than 31 May 2026, the ISCB will review the roles of fiscal agent and management agent, adjust as needed, and renew the arrangements for another period or reassign the roles to another entity.

Record of changes to this policy

ADDENDUM

Finances

Income:  55 euros per year per certifying agencies, 55 euros per candidate for certification and then 55 euros for recertification every five years.

Expenses: 55 euros per year per member of the ISC Board. About 15 euros per year for the domain name. Website hosting is at no cost. Other expenses are administrative: labor costs for website development and upkeep, bookkeeping and logbook maintenance, responses to written contact inquiries, and electronic issuance of certificates.

ISCB Bookkeeping

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