Annual General Meeting 2024 - Minutes


Wednesday 17th April 2024

Attendees: 40 IRSPM members (attendance list available on request).

The meeting opens at 12.09 PM (EEST).

  1. Minutes of the 2023 meeting 

Minutes are approved and no comments are raised.

  1. President’s items

The President provides a concise report on the principal activities undertaken by the society over the past year. Central to the report is the discussion of the society's strategic transition from a primarily conference-focused organization to a membership-driven society.

The President outlines five main lines of action that are to be prioritized to support this strategic shift: focused effort on Special Interest Groups (SIGs), with a dedicated role in charge of coordinating these activities;  emphasis on nurturing new researchers;  enhancement of the role of Vice Presidents within the society; streamlining communication and exploring value for members. The report also highlights the society’s ongoing work in organizing conferences, which remains a key component of its activities. These strategic initiatives illustrate the society's commitment to enhancing its structure and services to better serve its members and the broader research community.

  1. Announcement of election results

The Secretary summarizes the year’s election process, which was facilitated by a Nomination Committee, composed of the following 4 members: Deborah Agostino (Secretary and chair of the committee), Rosemary O’Leary, Barbara Zyzack (internal board members), and Reto Steiner (external board member). The Election secretary reports on the incoming members along with their respective roles:

  • Tiina Randma-Liiv has been elected as the new Vice President of Eastern Europe, replacing Gyorgy Hajnal, who has reached the end of his term limit and thus could not continue.
  • Joris Voets will take over as Vice President of Western Europe, as  Eva Thomann completed her term and opted not to seek re-election.
  • Norma Riccucci and Phuc Nguyen have been elected as the new at-large members, filling the vacancies left by Deborah Blackman and Christine Flynn, both serving as at-large members, who also reached their term limits.
  • Lode De Waele has been elected as the Conference, after being co-opted the last year.

For all of the above positions, one name was nominated for each position. Therefore no ballot was needed since there was one name for each position.

For the vacant position of the treasurer, more than one name was nominated, and thus a ballot was organized. The newly elected member for this position is Kristina Weissmuller.

During the assembly, a member requested detailed information regarding the results of the ballot. In response, the complete results were shared with all attendees. The results of the ballot shared during the annual general meeting were as follows:

  • Number of people that abstained from the vote: 20
  • Number of people that voted for Kristina Weißmüller: 88
  • Number of people that voted for Palina Prysmakova: 36
  1. Amendment to the constitution

The Secretary presents an Amendment to the Constitution. The proposal is to merge the positions of Communication Secretary and Membership board member into one, called Engagement Officer.

The proposal is unanimously approved. The amendment of the constitution is thus approved.

  1. Conference manager’s report

The conference manager reports on the number of conference participants this year. He highlights the following items related to the IRSPM 2024 Conference in Tampere:

  • 819 submissions, of which 755 accepted for presentation across 47 parallel sessions;
  • 3 new SIGs introduced this year.

The Conference Manager also reports on the decisions concerning upcoming conferences. Next year the conference will be held in Bologna, while in 2026 the conference is going to take place in Perth (Australia).  The conference manager is interacting with the local teams to move the organizations of the two events forward.

  1. Treasurer’s report

The Treasurer reports on the finances of the society, presenting the 2023 financial results of the society and the budget for 2024. This update highlighted the society's current financial health and the adherence to our fiscal policies and procedures.

  1. Internal auditor report

The internal auditor confirms his approval of the financial report.

  1. Activities for new researchers

The new researchers' coordinator reports on the activities developed for new researchers. She explained that two new activities were introduced (other than the annual panel at the conference). These new activities refer to two doctoral courses developed in collaboration with the President, the Vice President for Europe, and the SIG Complexity and Network Governance. Both courses are in collaboration with the Netherlands Institute of Governance (NIG):

  • Pre-conference PhD course: Network and Collaborative Governance: Theories, Methods and Practices.
  • After-conference PhD course: Introduction to Qualitative Comparative Analysis (QCA) using R.

As far as the traditional panel for new researchers within the IRSPM conference, this involved 14 sessions organized during the 2024 Conference.

  1. Update on SIG working groups and activities

This SIG coordinator report s the main activity developed during the year was represented by the development of a set of guidelines for SIGs. These guidelines will be provided on the website and clarify how to set up a SIG and the minimum requirements SIGs must comply with. The SIG coordinator also reminds members of the importance of filling out the membership survey which is very useful to better understand the value of society for members.

  1. Update on VP working group

Rosemary O’Leary, as spokesperson of the VP working group, reports on the main activities developed by this working group, which involved all 7 VPs. The working group underlined that the competencies of VPs are significantly different. The VPs brainstormed on a set of possible activities that could be coordinated by the VP in their reference organizational area, such as:

  • Partnering with local networks
  • Encourage colleagues and students to attend the annual IRSPM conference
  • Host regional conferences where there is demand
  • WeChat groups to build community
  • Bring VPs together at the annual conference to discuss strategy and share ideas.

She explained that the working group will continue on this reflection to structure a set of guidelines for VPs.


The President thanked the outcoming members: Deborah Blackman, Christine Flynn, Eva Thomann, and Gyorgy Hajnal.

The meeting ends at 1.02 PM (EEST).

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