- Promote international cooperation in all phases of construction and scientific exploitation
of gravitational-wave detectors;
- Coordinate and support long-range planning for new instrument proposals,
or proposals for instrument upgrades;
- Promote the development of gravitational-wave detection as an astronomical tool,
exploiting especially the potential for multi-messenger astrophysics;
- Organize regular, world-inclusive meetings and workshops for the study
of problems related to the development and exploitation of new or enhanced
gravitational-wave detectors, and foster research and development of new technology;
- Represent the gravitational-wave detection community internationally,
acting as its advocate;
- Provide a forum for project leaders to regularly meet, discuss, and
jointly plan the operations and direction of their detectors and experimental
gravitational-wave physics generally.
These by-laws describe the operation and governance of GWIC.
- 1. Membership: GWIC consists primarily of representatives of gravitational-wave detector projects or collaborations.
- 1.1. Every project or collaboration will be represented by at least one member; additional members may be granted for large projects or collaborations.
- 1.2. Members represent their projects or collaborations, and not their host institutions, funding agencies, governments or other organizations.
- 1.3. Each project or collaboration may choose its representative(s) via whatever internal process it chooses: however, it is recommended that GWIC members be project leaders with the mandate to speak with authority for their project or collaboration.
- 1.4. Other members: GWIC may extend invitations to individuals to join representing communities (e.g., the relativity theory community) or bodies whose participation may further its goals. Such members will be considered full voting members of GWIC.
- 1.5. New projects: New projects or collaborations may apply for membership. A representative applying for membership will be invited to a GWIC meeting to make a presentation about their project or collaboration and to discuss their status and plans with GWIC. A majority vote in closed session is required to approve new projects or collaborations.
- 1.6. Removal of projects: projects or collaborations which cease to be active may be removed from GWIC either through resignation or through a two-thirds vote of the membership at one of its meetings.
- 2. Meetings: GWIC will meet at least once annually. In alternate years, the meeting will be held coincident with or adjacent to the Amaldi Meeting; in other years, the meeting will rotate among project sites or be held in conjunction with another international meeting that is not associated with any one project. The chairperson can call extraordinary meetings as needed.
- 2.1. Whenever possible, remote participation by members who are unable to attend the meeting in person will be made available through electronic means.
- 2.2. Substitutes: Any member who cannot attend a meeting may send a substitute. The name of such substitute should be submitted to the Executive secretary in advance of the meeting.
- 2.3. Guests: The GWIC chairperson may invite guests to GWIC meetings as needed. Guests may include any members of the gravitational wave community having business to conduct with GWIC, e.g., reporting on any GWIC activities, proposing to host the Amaldi meeting, etc. Guests may also include representatives of funding agencies, government officials, scholars from other fields, and members of the science journalism community. Guests will be excluded from closed sessions and may not vote.
- 2.4. Minutes: Minutes will be issued by the GWIC Executive Secretary following each meeting.
- 3. Officers: The officers of GWIC are the Chairperson and the Executive Secretary.
- 3.1. GWIC Chairperson
3.1.1. The Chairperson serves a two year term; there are no restrictions on the number of terms that the Chairperson can serve.
3.1.2. The Chairperson is elected by majority vote from among GWIC members. The Executive Secretary will convene a nominating committee with broad representation across GWIC prior to the GWIC meeting at which the Chairperson's term ends. The nominating committee will report its candidate(s) in closed session. The election will be held at the meeting.
- 3.2. Executive Secretary
3.2.1. The Executive Secretary is appointed by the Chairperson and reports to the Chairperson.
3.2.2. The Executive Secretary does not represent any individual project, and does not vote.
- 4. GWIC activities: GWIC activities will include the following:
- 4.1. Advocacy: The chairperson can speak for GWIC with appropriate consultation. The chairperson can represent GWIC to agencies with consultation as needed.
- 4.2. Studies and reports: GWIC may appoint subcommittees to study and report on particular issues of interest or importance to its mission. Membership on these subcommittees is not restricted to GWIC members, but it is expected that GWIC members will form a significant part of such committees. The Chairperson is responsible to set the charge of such subcommittees and to accept their reports.
- 4.3. Amaldi meeting: GWIC will organize the Edoardo Amaldi Conferences on Gravitational Waves on a biannual basis to serve as the principal meeting of the broader gravitational wave community. GWIC will accept proposals to host the Amaldi meetings from all interested partners and will select the venue based on a combination of the proposed local arrangements and equitable distribution of sites relative to participants. GWIC will ensure that the scientific program represents the full breadth of its projects as well as other scientific communities with interests in gravitational wave science. GWIC will ensure that the Amaldi meeting conforms to broadly accepted norms for open participation.
- 4.4. Other meetings: GWIC may lend its support to other specialized conferences or workshops that further the general aims of GWIC. If GWIC does associate itself with such meetings, it will ensure that such meetings conform to accepted international standards for enabling broad participation and it will encourage cross-project communications.
- 4.5. Thesis Prize: GWIC will award an annual Thesis Prize to recognize outstanding research in the field of gravitational waves. The Executive Secretary is responsible for administering the Thesis Prize, including assembling a selection committee (whose membership is approved by the Chairperson), issuing the call for nominations and arranging the award to the winner.
- 4.6. Website: GWIC will maintain a website to document its activities and to inform the community about its activities. The Executive Secretary will be responsible for maintaining the website.
- 5. Ties to other organizations: To most effectively accomplish its goals, it may become advantageous for GWIC to affiliate itself with other international scientific organizations. Such affiliations may involve joint activities, cross-membership, or other ties, but GWIC will retain its identity independent of such other organization(s). The Chairperson is responsible to research and propose any such ties. Such proposals from the Chairperson will be discussed at a meeting of GWIC. Voting will be by email after the meeting at which it is discussed. A two-thirds majority is required to approve any such ties.
- 6. Amendments to the By-laws: The By-laws may be amended by two-thirds vote of the membership. Amendments to the By-laws may be proposed by any member of GWIC. Such amendments will be brought to the attention of the Chairperson and the Executive Secretary. Amendments will be circulated to the membership at least two weeks prior to a general meeting, and will be discussed at the meeting. Voting will be by email after the meeting at which it is discussed. A two-thirds majority is required to approve any amendments.
Link for the GWIC By-laws in PDF format