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Governance

How the Geological Society works

Structure of the Society

The Society is run by a Council of 23 members, including the President and four honorary secretaries. All elections are overseen by an Elections Standing Committee. Presidents are elected each year for two years, and the President-elect serves for one year on Council before assuming office. Council members are elected for three years and are collectively the Society’s Trustees.

Council is chaired by the President, who is elected for a two-year term. It meets five times each year, including one strategy meeting in January. A Vice-President is elected each year from among Council members.

New Fellows are elected by the Fellowship at Ordinary General Meetings (OGMs) of the Society, when names submitted to Council are formally proposed. On President's Day, the Society has its Annual General Meeting (AGM), when the Fellowship receives reports from Officers and the Annual Accounts for discussion and approval. Occasionally, for such matters as altering its bye-laws, including changing the Fellowship dues, the Society may call a Special General Meeting (SGM). More detail about AGMs, OGMs and SGMs can be found in the Society's Bye-laws. All meetings are advertised in the Events section on this site.

Reporting to Council are four standing committees. These are:
Except for the Finance and Planning Committee, each Committee is chaired by a Secretary for a term of three years. The Finance and Planning Committee is chaired by the Treasurer. Reporting to Council through these committees are various sub-committees with special functions, some temporary, some permanent and these are shown on the individual pages for each committee (for example, the Corporate Affiliates Committee, which reports through the Finance and Planning Committee, and the Library Users Group, which reports through the Publications and Information Committee).

The Audit Committee, Awards Committee, Chartership Audit Committee, Elections Committee and the Officers group report directly to Council.

The Society’s work is carried out by the staff based in Burlington House and at its Publishing House, under the direction of the Executive Secretary.

The Society publishes an Annual Report in April. This contains a review of the activities of the past year, obituary notices, the report of the Society’s Auditors and (in a second volume) the full accounts.

The Society's governing instrument is its Charter, supported by the Bye-laws which are controlled by the Fellowship.  Under the Bye-laws, Council may implement regulations to manage the Society's business.