You are here: Home About Background CCPN Charter

CCPN Charter

The CCPN Charter, governing the organisation and procedures of CCPN.

This revised version of the CCPN charter was agreed by the CCPN Assembly on 15 November 2019.

Document Organisation:

1. Purpose:

1.1.    The purpose of CCPN is to advance the making, coordination, promotion and distribution of software as well as 'best practices' for the biomolecular NMR spectroscopy community. CCPN also aims to foster collaborations and to represent the biomolecular NMR community in matters related to research funding and development of (research) policies whenever relevant for its community.

1.2.    CCPN will achieve this purpose by working with all stakeholders, such as NMR users, Universities, other organisations including (but not restricted to) database providers, other software developers, funding councils, learned societies and manufacturers.

2. The Assembly:

2.1.   The Assembly is the highest authority of the CCPN.

2.2.   Each academic research group working in the field of biomolecular NMR spectroscopy in the UK has a right to membership of the CCPN Assembly - each group counting as one member represented by the principal investigator (PI) of the group or their delegate. The membership list is maintained and published by the Executive Committee using a mechanism that requires the PI of each group to re-confirm their continued membership annually. New and lapsed members have the right to apply for membership.

2.3.   Each member group has the right to be represented by one delegate at Assembly meetings. Members of the Executive Committee also have the right to participate as delegates.

2.4.   The Assembly meets at least once every calendar year, with the general meeting typically scheduled to take place at the annual CCPN conference. Extraordinary meetings can be called at the request of a minimum of five existing Assembly members. Meetings may take place either in person or on-line. The agenda should be announced to the current members of the Assembly at least four weeks in advance.

2.5.   The general meeting of the Assembly receives the reports and plans of the Executive Committee and the Working Group.

2.6.  It is expected that decisions of the Assembly will be made by consensus, but any three delegates can call for a decision to be put to the vote. Elections to the Executive Committee are dealt with as set out in clause 2.7 and changes to the charter are dealt with as set out under clause 2.8. Other matters will be decided by a simple majority either at a general Assembly meeting, or in an electronic ballot of the members of the Assembly.

2.7.   The Assembly elects a Chairperson and at least two additional members of the Executive Committee. Typically, having first sought nominations, the standing Executive Committee will propose the composition of the ongoing Executive Committee to the Assembly for approval. In the case that objections are received:

2.7.1. The Secretary will put the Executive Committee's proposal to a vote by the Assembly at which a simple majority of those voting will determine the outcome.

2.7.2. In the case that the proposal is rejected, the Secretary will i) determine the number of vacant posts to be equal to the number of Executive Committee members who have reached the end of their term, or who wish to resign; ii) seek formal nominations from the Assembly members; and iii) in the case of a contested election, organise a ballot of the Assembly members using the single transferable vote system with elimination transfers.

2.8. Proposed changes to the CCPN charter will be published to the Assembly by the Secretary for a period of at least four weeks, during which period members may propose amendments or objections to the changes. If no amendments or objections are received by the Secretary, the changes will be deemed to be accepted. If amendments or objections are received, the changes and amendments will be put to a vote:

2.8.1. either, at an Assembly meeting at which at least one third of the Assembly members are represented. Any changes will require the assent of the majority of the delegates present and those in favour must represent at least one third of the Assembly members.  Members can appoint a proxy to vote on their behalf by advising the Secretary or Chairman of the Executive Committee in advance of the meeting and such proxy votes will count towards the quorum and majority requirements.

2.8.2. or, via an electronic voting procedure, in which case the time frame for voting shall be restricted to two weeks. Each Assembly member will have one vote. Any changes will require the assent of the majority of the members who vote and those in favour must represent at least one third of the Assembly members.

3. The Executive Committee:

3.1.   The Executive Committee consists of:  the principal applicant of the CCPN grant who serves as convenor of the Executive Committee and chair of the Working Group, at least three additional members elected by the Assembly, and the Secretary of the CCPN. The Executive Committee may co-opt additional members to represent e.g. early career researchers, industry representatives, or research funders.

3.2.   The Chairperson of the Executive Committee will be elected by the Assembly from amongst the members of the Executive Committee who are elected by the Assembly.

3.3.   The functions of the Executive Committee are:

a.  To decide on financial matters as required.

b.  To assist with preparation and submission of grant applications.

c.  To interact with and respond to approaches from outside organisations.

d.  To assist with interviewing of new staff as required.

e.  To liaise with the relevant research funders.

f.  To oversee the activities and review the membership of the Working Group.

3.4.   The Executive Committee will meet at least once a year either in person or via a teleconference.

3.5.   With the exception of the principal applicant of the CCPN grant and the Secretary, membership of the Executive Committee shall be for a fixed three year term. Committee members may serve consecutive terms.

3.6.   The Executive Committee can institute advisory committees to consult on specific topics. The membership and mandate of the advisory committees is decided by the Executive Committee.

4. The Working Group:

Most of the work of the CCPN will be carried out by the Working Group acting on authority delegated to it by the Assembly and the Executive Committee. The Working Group will be chaired by the principal applicant on the grant, but otherwise membership and operation of the Working Group will be decided by the Working Group itself, subject to review by the Executive Committee.

5. The Secretary:

5.1.   The Secretary of CCPN will assist the Executive Committee and the Working Group in all relevant matters. The Secretary is responsible for:

a.  Administration of CCPN within the format described above.

b.  Coordination of the activities of CCPN, including dissemination of relevant information to the Assembly.

5.2.   When the Secretary is a member of the Working group, they will be responsible to the Chairperson of the Working group for the implementation of Working Group decisions and to the Executive Committee on all other matters.

6. CCPN Users Group:

CCPN will distribute software written within CCPN or contributed by third parties to members of the CCPN Users Group. Membership is free to academic and non-profit organisations. For-profit corporations may be asked to make an annual donation and/or pay a software usage fee to become a member of the CCPN Users Group and have access to the software and meetings. Membership of the CCPN Users Group may be required for participation in CCPN-arranged meetings.

7. Income:

7.1.   Income accrued to the CCPN must be spent by the CCPN in accordance with the purpose of the organisation.

7.2.   Income derived from for-profit organisations, including Industrial Sponsor and software usage fees (the “Industry Fund”), may be used for specific developments, such as new tools, features or materials, at the request of and to the benefit of all users, including but not restricted to the requesting Industrial Sponsor. Any of these outcomes will become freely available to the benefit of the full CCPN Users Group. Industrial Sponsors may be charged additional fees to purchase additional services.

7.3.   CCPN meeting fees will firstly be used to meet the full costs of meetings, workshops, training events, etc., and, in particular, to subsidise the costs of attendance by PhD students and post-docs.  Any residual funds left after meeting these costs may be used towards other costs of the CCPN, including staff costs.

7.4.   The Industry Fund can be allocated towards any measures that advance the project, such as, but not restricted to, travel, equipment, student stipends, or staff costs including those for administrative support for the project. In particular, the financial management of the project, the organisation of the CCPN conferences and meetings of the executive committee and advisory panel may require the assistance of such administrative staff.

7.5.   All activities funded from external income are overseen and approved by the Executive Committee.