Constitution – The Society for Multi-Ethnic Studies: Europe and the Americas

Art. 1

Name and Location

  • The Society is named "The Society for Multi-Ethnic Studies: Europe and the Americas" e.V. (Registered Society).
  • The Society is located in Heidelberg, Germany. It is to be entered in the Registry of Associations (Vereinsregister) in Heidelberg. The fiscal year is the calendar year.

Art. 2


  • The Society has the purpose of promoting the study of ethnic cultures of Europe and the Americas, as well as supporting the scholarly and cultural exchange between them. The society will act as a forum for cooperation between universities, political institutions and ethnic communities to further multi-ethnic understanding.
  • The Society will pursue exclusively non-profit purposes. It has not been founded as a commercial enterprise.
  • Any excess revenue at the end of the fiscal year may only be used for the purposes of the Society. The members may not receive any portion of the excess revenue, and in their capacity as members they may not receive any other gratuities from the Society. If the Society is dissolved, members will not receive any of the remaining funds.
  • No person may benefit from administrative costs that are foreign to the purposes of the Society or receive compensation that exceeds a reasonable amount for the work done.

Art. 3


  • Persons who are associated with the tasks and goals of the Society may become Members.
  • Supporting Members are persons and associations who support the Society with contributions.
  • Officers shall decide about the admission of new members. Membership terminates through
    1. written declaration
    2. expulsion.

    The declaration of termination of membership can be submitted at any time, but does not release the resigning member from payment of membership dues for the given calendar year. A member can be expelled by the Executive Board. The person expelled can appeal within fourteen (14) days after receiving the declaration of expulsion, which will in turn be presented to the Membership Meeting for a decision.

  • Only Members of the Society in good standing have the right to vote at the Membership Meetings.

Art. 4


The Society shall consist of the following bodies:

  1. Membership Meeting
  2. Executive Board
  3. Advisory Board.

Art. 5

Membership Meeting

  • A Membership Meeting will be called in writing by the Executive Board and announced via surface mail or by email at least once every two years with the distribution of the agenda at least 14 days before the first day of the Membership Meeting.
  • Upon request of one-third of the Members, an extraordinary Membership Meeting can be called.
  • Decisions will be made at the Membership Meeting by simple majority vote of the Members present. It is responsible in particular for the following:
    • Election of the Executive Board, the Advisory Board and the Auditors;
    • Approval of the budget;
    • Release of the Executive Board of all legal liability for activities to date upon the report of activities and the results of the audit;
    • Expulsion of members based on Art. 3, Sec. 3b.
  • Amendments to this Constitution and the dissolution of the Society must be approved by a three-fourths majority of members present. If a decision is not reached, a decision can be reached with a two-thirds majority of the members present at the next Membership Meeting.
  • The Society can be dissolved by a three-quarters majority of the Members present. If a decision is not reached, a new Membership Meeting is to be convened with the same agenda and this Membership Meeting can make decisions regardless of the number of Members present. This must be stated in the invitation.

Art. 6

Executive Board

  • The Executive Board consists of the following officers: President, Vice-President, Treasurer, Secretary, and Program Chair (Publicity and Conferences). If a member of the Executive Board has left office, the Executive will appoint a replacement until the next Membership Meeting
  • The Executive Board will conduct the business of the Society.
  • The President will chair the Executive Board.
  • The term of office is four years.
  • The Members of the Executive Board named in Art. 6.1 are the Executive according to the stipulations of Art. 26 of the German Civil Code (BGB). This means that each Member individually has the right to represent the Society.

Art. 7

Advisory Board

  • The Membership Meeting will elect the Advisory Board of five members, taking into consideration an appropriate distribution of their fields of expertise as well as geographical location.
  • The Advisory Board will support the Executive Board in decision-and-policy making. The Executive Board will regularly inform the Advisory Board of its activities.
  • At least four countries must be represented on the combined Executive and Advisory Boards.
  • The term of office is four years.

Art. 8

Budget Audit

The budget will be audited by two auditors elected by the Membership Meeting. The Auditors will report to the Membership Meeting. The auditors may not be members of the Advisory Board.

Art. 9

Membership Fees

Membership fees will be determined by the Membership Meeting. The Executive Board has the right to reduce or waive the membership fee in individual cases.

Art. 10

Dissolving the Society

If the Society is dissolved or its original purposes no longer apply, the Society’s assets, insofar as they exceed the assessed capital investment of individual members and/or the assessed value of material items contributed by members, will be transferred to The Collegium for African American Research (CAAR), which is to use it for exclusively non-profit purposes.

Art. 11


Minutes of the business conducted at the meetings of the Executive Board and the Membership Meetings are to be taken and signed by one Member of the Executive Board.

The Constitution above was read and approved at the Founding Meeting in Orléans, France, on 24 June 2000.
MESEA is registered as a non-profit organization with the County Court (Amstgericht) in Heidelberg, Germany, registration number VR 2734.