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SDA-GA 2022 Statutes
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Statutes for the Systemic Design Association (SDA)

Reference: Systemic Design Association General Assembly, Wednesday, October 12, 2022

Systemic Design Association (SDA) was founded on 23rd October 2018. The name used in practice is SDA. The registered name is Systemic Design Association. SDA is registered at, the Norwegian government registry for organisations.

The SDA registration number is 922 275 696

The domain URL is This is also the domain for RSD proceedings (Relating Systems Thinking and Design conferences). 

SDA began as a collegial research network in 2012 called the Systemic Design Research Network (SDRN). The core network founders were responsible for the RSD conferences and the Systemic Design website.

Our aspirations for the SDA include:  

§ 1 Purpose and Strategies  

SDA is an international and interdisciplinary design research network and is recognised by other scholarly societies in the field. Our goal is to support the development of systemic design in design practice, methodology and theory. Field building includes research and practice through an active, collaborative research network, an annual research symposium, scholarly collaborations, and high-quality publishing.

SDA supports a pluralistic approach and view in the development of systemic design and allows a variety of different approaches to flourish. SDA supports the development of normative ethical standards related to agency, actions, and the consequences of systemic design practice.

SDA pursues a spirit of openness and follows a principle of low-overhead operations and distributed responsibility.  

§ 2 Goals 

 § 3 Organisational Connections

SDA is an independent association. SDA may cooperate with academic institutions or companies that participate in research projects. SDA can accept sponsorship that does not compromise the integrity of the network. 

SDA is a not-for-profit association registered in Norway with a contact person who must have a Norwegian address. The contact person must be a member of the SDA. The General Assembly may change the registration or move it to another country.

§ 4 Membership 

Individual membership is open to anyone interested in systemic design. The board must approve membership applications.

Institutional membership is open to educational organisations, research organisations, and to public and private organisations and non-governmental organisations.

The board might invite Honorary members who are individuals of high international standing whom SDA invites to serve as supporters and patrons.

§ 5 Becoming a Member

 Members apply for membership on the SDA website. Following board approval, membership becomes active on payment of the membership fee. The fee is annual, covering the calendar year.

§ 6 Rights and Obligations

Individual members have the right to participate and vote in the General Assembly. Members receive a discount on the RSD conference fee at a rate determined by the board.

Each member has one vote. Institutional memberships are represented with one vote.

Institutional membership includes a membership discount on the RSD conference fee for employees of the institution.

Members are obliged to live up to ethical standards for scientific research and to make their research public. This is crucial to the reputation of the SDA as a network of researchers and professionals.  

Members should provide the information that SDA requests to update the website and the annual report.

When members use the network for personal or professional goals, SDA expects the member to give credit to the network and its members.  

 Use of the SDA logo must be approved by the board.

§ 7 Termination of Membership

The board may expel members who do not meet the obligations of membership.

If members do not pay the annual fee, membership will cease for that renewal year. 

§ 8 General Assembly, Voting, and Election

We hold the General Assembly (GA) once each year at the time of the RSD Symposium. The General Assembly is open to all members. All members have the right to vote. Each member has one vote. Institutional memberships are represented with one vote.

For reporting convenience, the business year of the SDA will run from 1st Oct to 30th September of each year so that the reporting period will roughly coincide with the SDA GA held normally during the RSD conference in October.

The regular agenda for the General Assembly shall consist of:

  1. Election of General Assembly chair from among members attending that year.
  2. Election of two members to write the protocol
  3. Election of two members to sign the General Assembly protocol. Board members may not sign the protocol.
  4. Approval of the SDA annual report for the previous year.
  5. Approval of the financial report for the previous year.
  6. Decide the membership fee for the coming year.
  7. Approval of the SDA budget.
  8. Board and chair elections:
  1. Chair
  2. Vice-chair
  3. Secretary
  4. Treasurer
  5. Board Members
  1. Optional: Election of a board auditor amongst the members
  2. Election of two members for the voting committee for the next General Assembly. Sitting board members may not serve on this committee.
  3. Ratification of the next RSD host.
  4. Decisions on submitted suggestions.

The General Assembly forms the governing body of the SDA.

The General Assembly chair is elected for the current meeting only. No board member may serve as General Assembly chair.

The Board announces the General Assembly at least two months in advance of the meeting. Members should send suggestions for the General Assembly agenda to the Board at least four weeks before the General Assembly. The Board distributes the final agenda for the General Assembly to members at least one week before the meeting.

The General Assembly is registered with the number of members attending. The Board or individual members must propose amendments to the statutes at least four weeks before the General Assembly. The General Assembly may amend the statutes if changes have been announced at least four weeks before the General Assembly.

Issues are settled with simple majority. No one has more than one vote. All voting and elections will be conducted by electronic devices.  

In addition to candidates nominated by the election committee, individual members may propose candidates. They must submit names at least two weeks before the General Assembly. The General Assembly may only elect candidates nominated in the agenda document sent to members at least one week before the General Assembly.  

 § 9 Annual Membership Fees

60 Euros for individual members. 

Individual members who are registered as students pay half the ordinary fee.

Institutional membership fee is 500 Euros.

The membership fee is valid for the calendar year of payment until an automated membership system is in place.

§ 10 Reimbursement of Board Members 

Board members may be reimbursed for the actual costs of board activities if funds are available.

§ 11 Extraordinary General Assembly

The board or a minimum of one-third of the members may call for an Extraordinary General Assembly. 

An Extraordinary General Assembly follows the same rules as a normal General Assembly except that it does not have to address the obligatory agenda issues of the regular General Assembly.  

§ 12 The Board 

The Board leads the SDA as the governing authority between meetings of the General Assembly. The Board consists of no more than nine (9) members. The Board shall be gender balanced and geographically spread.

The roles on the board are:

  1. Chair
  2. Vice-chair
  3. Secretary
  4. Treasurer
  5. Board member
  6. Board member
  7. Board member
  8. Board member
  9. Board member

Additionally, each chair of RSD is an “invited member” of SDA for two (2) years duration (one year before the conference “preparation” and one year after the event) to enable close cooperation between the board and the conference organisers as well as pass on experience to the incoming chair.

The duties of the board are to:

  1. Execute the decisions of the General Assembly
  2. To administer and keep the necessary control of SDA’s finances regarding the instructions and regulations decided upon in the GA
  3. Represent SDA externally
  4. Create subcommittees and assign key roles to delegate work as needed, including such roles as supporting the organisation of conferences, and publications, chairing the scientific committee, chairing the practice development committee, membership, media management, and others
  5. The board encourages practical decision-making at the lowest possible level and encourages delegation of power.

The chair is elected for a two-year term, which is renewable. The General Assembly or an Extraordinary General Assembly may remove the chair by a simple majority. Members of the board other than the chair serve a renewable term of one year. The election of new board members takes place at the annual General Assembly or during an Extraordinary General Assembly. The board will meet according to need and remotely, when possible, between General Assembly meetings or when a majority of the board members demand a meeting.

The minutes of each board meeting are published for members only on the SDA website.

The board may make decisions when more than half of the members take part. Decisions are made with simple majority. If there are equal votes, the chair has a deciding vote.

The board will elect a standing member to fill in when a board member cannot fulfil their duties for any reason.

§ 13 Changes of the Statutes

Changes of these statutes may only take place at an ordinary or extraordinary General Assembly following an agenda announcement according to the regulations. Changes to the statutes require a two-thirds majority.

§ 14 Termination of the Association

(§ 14 cannot be changed) 

The termination of SDA can only occur at an ordinary General Assembly. If the General Assembly decides to terminate the SDA a two-thirds majority of members attending the GA, an Extraordinary General Assembly is announced three months later. To terminate the SDA, the Extraordinary General Assembly must affirm the decision to terminate the SDA with a two-thirds majority.

§ 15 Intellectual Property  

SDA does not hold any intellectual property for the research presented at the RSD symposia.  

SDA is the publisher of the RSD proceedings. All RSD proceedings are to be open-access publications.

§ 16 Economic Responsibilities

SDA is not financially responsible for the management or operations of the RSD conferences. This responsibility is solely that of the local organisers.