Rules for the Elections – General Assembly 2022
This page provides an explanation of the MCAA internal procedures and describes the rules and guidelines to be applied for the election of the Members of the Board for the election of 27th March 2022. This document was created to ensure an open, transparent, and fair democratic process.
The MCAA Elections Task Force is responsible for all decisions concerning the elections rules, as well as for the validation of candidates, the organization of the elections and the counting of votes. The Task Force is made up of the following persons: Mostafa Moonir Shawrav (MCAA Chair), Valentina Ferro (MCAA Vice-Chair), Sara Ricardo (MCAA ordinary Board member), Brian Cahill (Member of the MCAA Ethics Committee), and Federico Torres (Contractor). No one, board member or otherwise, who is not listed as a member of the Task Force had access, reviewed or made decision to any documents relative to the elections.
1 MCAA BOARD MEMBERS
a) Eleven Board Members are to be Elected, as per the following five categories:
- One Chair of the Board (and Executive Committee)
- Two Vice-Chairs of the Board (and Executive Committee)
- One Treasurer of the Board (and Executive Committee)
- One Secretary of the Board (and Executive Committee)
- Six Ordinary Board Members
b) The mandate of the board members is for a period of approximately two years. The mandate of the elected board will end at the GA of 2024, after the election of a new board.
2 APPLYING TO THE BOARD POSITIONS
a) An individual can run for at most one (1) Board position, provided they are eligible. If an individual applies to run for a Board position, they cannot apply to run for another Board position simultaneously. They must first revoke their first candidacy before applying to run for another Board position.
b) In order to be eligible for election, members shall comply with the following criteria:
- To be registered on the Marie Curie Alumni web-portal for at least 12 months before the date of the election;
- A Board member shall not be elected more than two times.
- To have set up a personal and career profile in the web-portal, completed to at least 90%;
- To have filled in the Board Application Form, available on the web-portal, during the nomination period, and no later than 31thJanuary 2022 (17:00 CET).
- To have no conflicts of interest (candidates must declare potential conflicts of interests, which will be evaluated by the Election Task Force before validating the candidacy).
- To have no criminal record, and have not been involved in any illegal or unethical activity, including fraud, tax evasion, influence peddling, etc.
- Adhere to the values of the MCAA as well as to the Articles of the Association (AoA).
- They may not be a member of the MCAA 2022 Election Task Force designated to prepare these guidelines. Members excluded as per this rule for 2022 include:
- Mostafa Moonir Shawrav (MCAA Chair)
- Valentina Ferro (MCAA Vice-Chair)
- Sara Ricardo (Ordinary Board Member)
- Brian Cahill (Ethics committee representative & Former chair of the MCAA)
Any new member to the MCAA Election Task Force named after the publication of these guidelines.
c) Candidate profiles, positions to which they are applying, and a short (Maximum 600 words) personal statement regarding the nomination will be submitted by each candidate during the Nomination Period via the MCAA web-portal. The statement should briefly describe (a) candidates’ backgrounds and similar past experiences, (b) plans and priorities for the coming 2 years, and (c) the reasons why candidates consider they are qualified for taking over the position.
d) Nominations will not be approved automatically, but will need to be validated by the Elections Task Force. After the submission of nominations, candidates will receive an automated message indicating that the application was received. After that the Election Task Force will validate all applications according to the eligibility criteria stated in this document. The final list of candidates will be displayed at the portal before the campaign period starts. During the validation process, the Election Task Force may contact candidates should more information or clarity be required. Candidates may contact the Election Task Force should they need clarifications related to the validation of their candidacies (email@example.com).
e) Candidates will have the ability to revoke their nomination through the MCAA web portal at any time leading up to the General Assembly. Revocations of nominations will be posted on the MCAA Web portal within 3 working days upon submission, and this information will be posted chronologically.
f) All candidate profiles, including the position to which they are applying, and a short personal statement regarding the candidacy, will be made available on the MCAA web portal simultaneously after the validation process, and no earlier than February 1, 2022, and at least two weeks ahead of the General Assembly, and this information will thereby be available to all MCAA members.
3 CAMPAIGN RULES
MCAA contractors will report to the Election Task Force of any breach of the following campaign rules; the Election Task Force will vote to disqualify candidates who are not compliant.
A. The use of MCAA resources for campaigning is forbidden. These resources include:
- Financial resources of MCAA, including both MCAA Governance Budget and MCAA Own Fund.
- MCAA publications (including but not limited to Social Media, Newsletter, Magazine, Blog), except when explicitly allowed for the purposes of the election.
- MCAA Chapter and Working Group publications and communication channels.
- MCAA App (Lounjee).
- MCAA Web Portal, except when explicitly allowed for the purposes of the election
B. MCAA will provide a standard format on the web portal for Candidates to promote their candidacy.
C. Campaigning is prohibited while polls are open during the General Assembly.
Candidates may be invited to submit a short video of not more than 2 minutes to present their candidacy to the MCAA community, explaining their main ideas and priorities. The videos will be uploaded to the MCAA portal.
The Election Task Force may also organize meeting/debate/discussion for the Excom/board candidates.
4 VOTING SYSTEM AND PROCESS
a) A secret vote will be cast on the day of the MCAA General Assembly through the electronic voting system. The guidelines to use the electronic voting system will be shared in advance and will be available in the portal.
b) During the day of the GA, each voting member attending the GA (either physically or remotely) will be able to cast their vote. When all members have voted, or when the time allocated for voting has expired (whichever is sooner), the votes will be counted, and the results will be announced.
c) In a category where there is one (1) position to fill (i.e., Chair, Treasurer and Secretary), each MCAA member attending the General Assembly shall have the option to either:
- cast one (1) vote for one (1) candidate,
- leave the category blank
d) In a category where there are multiple positions to fill (i.e., two (2) for Vice-Chair and six (6) for Ordinary Board Member), each MCAA member attending the General Assembly shall have the option to either:
- cast at least one (1) vote, and at most the number of votes corresponding to the number of positions to fill,
- leave the category blank
e) If a category has more votes than the number of positions to fill, then the votes for that category will be considered not valid.
f) Any ballot form with any other mark, written comment, or other means of identification, will not be deemed valid.
g) Voting ballot-forms submitted, but not filled in at all (i.e. without “X” in any boxes, and with no other mark, written comment, or other means of identification) will be considered as blank but valid votes.
5 VOTING RESULTS
a) For each of the above-listed positions, the candidate with the highest number of votes received will be considered as elected; where more than one position is to be filled, the candidate with the most votes will take the first position, the candidate with the second highest number of votes will take the second position, and this principle is continued until all positions are filled.
b) If two candidates receive the same number of votes for one position, the current Board members present at the General Assembly will publicly vote by a show of hands during the General Assembly to break the tie. Board members running for the election will not vote on this to avoid conflict of interest. If this vote ends in a tie, a coin flip will determine the winner. The coin flip will be administered by the Election Task Force, who will determine which candidates are represented by which side of the coin. The coin will be flipped in the air and allowed to drop to the floor. The side facing up when the coin lands and stops moving will be the side that wins. The choice of coin will be made by the Election Task Force at the time of the coin flip.
c) The tabulation of voting results will be conducted and validated by the Election Task Force.
d) The voting results shall be:
- Registered in the minutes / proceedings of the General Assembly;
- Published on the MCAA web-portal, under the section MCAA Board (https://www.mariecuriealumni.eu/mcaa-board).
- Published, as legally required, in the ‘Moniteur Belge’.
e) The mandate of the newly elected Board will officially begin with the closing of the General Assembly.