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Your Role

Science Atlantic Board of Directors

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Materials

Board Director Responsibilities

Attend Board Meetings and Serve on Committees

To be a strong contributor to the Board, it is critical that Directors maximize their Board meeting attendance.  In order to contribute to decisions in a meaningful way, Directors need to be present at meetings so that they can fully understand discussions surrounding key decisions and ongoing issues.

It is expected that Directors will aim to attend at least 75% of Board meetings (six of eight meetings annually).  When unable to attend, the Director should ensure prompt communication to the Chair in advance and read all related minutes to ensure they are up-to-date on Board affairs.

Each Board Director is expected to be a lead on one of the initiatives of the organization’s Strategic Plan.  These portfolios will be assessed as needed.

Be Prepared

Directors should read Board package in advance of meetings (agenda, minutes, reports, etc.) and be familiar with other key board and organizational documents (Board Charter, by-laws, Annual Priorities document, financial statements, etc.).

Avoid any Conflicts of Interest

Directors should declare a conflict of interest when appropriate and should not allow self-interest to influence decisions of the Board.

Speak with One Voice

Once due process has occurred and a Board decision is made, all Directors should support the final decision of the Board. Directors can ask that decisions be reviewed if they believe that the decision was made without all the necessary information or due process.

Respect Various Perspectives

Directors should respectfully allow for fair consideration to opposing viewpoints.

Contribute Opinions and Support the Mission

Directors should offer personal perspectives and opinions during Board discussions and decisions and voice any opposition to decisions being taken by the Board. Directors should also be faithful to the mission and vision of Science Atlantic.

Maintain Confidentiality

Directors should maintain the confidentiality of information obtained by virtue of being a member of the Board.

Self-Assess Attendance and Contribution

Directors should self-assess their level of contribution to the Board and step down if necessary.

Approved November 20, 2015, January 2018; updated February 18, 2020

These responsibilities will be reviewed every two years.

Membership Code of Conduct

Definitions

i.“Members” refers to the institutions that comprise Science Atlantic.
ii. “Institutional Representative” refers to an individual (usually the Dean of Science or equivalent) representing a Member Institution.
iii. “Membership” refers to: members of Science Atlantic’s Board of Directors (henceforth referred to as “Directors”), Institutional Representatives, Committee Chairs, and members of Science Atlantic committees.

The Membership is committed to observing and promoting the highest standards of ethical conduct in the performance of their responsibilities. The Membership pledges to accept this Code as a minimum guideline for ethical conduct.

Representing the Organization

The Membership is expected to advocate for the organization and its mission within the public sphere. The Board of Directors should always speak with one voice. Any differences of opinion within the Board or a committee should be settled through discussion and voting by the entire membership of that body, and should not be disclosed to those who are not members of that body. It is considered misconduct to speak out against Science Atlantic, fellow members, staff, volunteers, or conference attendees to those outside of the organization. The Membership is expected to uphold the standards and values of Science Atlantic by supporting student endeavours affiliated with the organization in all capacities. See also: Duty of Care.

Duty of Care 

The Duty of Care refers to the level of competence that is expected of the Membership and is here defined as “the duty of care that an ordinarily prudent person would exercise in a like position and under similar circumstances.” The Duty of Care requires the Membership of Science Atlantic to exercise reasonable diligence and due care in conducting Science Atlantic’s affairs. At a minimum, they must fulfill the duties of their job descriptions and stay informed of the activities of Science Atlantic by regularly attending their required meetings and understanding how Science Atlantic functions under its bylaws and this Code of Conduct. Board Directors must act in good faith as they make decisions and seek always to avoid the misuse or waste of Science Atlantic’s assets. See also: Attendance and Participation.

Use of Authority

The Membership of Science Atlantic must adhere to the details of individual position descriptions, as well as the policies and bylaws of Science Atlantic as they relate to those positions. Individuals within the Membership should recognize their authority and not overstep into the authority of the Executive Director with staff or with external partners. For more information on the job descriptions of specific Membership positions, see Job Descriptions (coming soon).

Treatment of Other Members, Staff, and Volunteers

Science Atlantic is committed to providing an environment of safety and respect for its Membership, volunteers, employees, and participants. The Membership is expected to comply with this Code of Conduct, and in doing so, agrees not to discriminate based on any of the prohibited grounds of discrimination, as outlined by the Canadian Human Rights Act. Discrimination is defined as adverse treatment against an individual or group based on one or more of these grounds.

Communications among the Membership, staff and volunteers should be respectful, constructive and professional at all times.

Furthermore, harassment, interpreted as unwelcome conduct, comment, gesture, contact, or intimidating and offensive behaviour likely to cause offence or humiliation, is not to be tolerated. Harassment may be based on the grounds listed above, or may be personal.

The following are examples of inappropriate conduct that may be in violation of this Membership Code of Conduct:

  • Derogatory or inappropriate comments, teasing, bullying, innuendoes or taunting
  • Display or circulation of inappropriate, derogatory or offensive written materials, cartoons or pictures
  • Inappropriate physical contact
  • Physical or verbal abuse
  • Refusing to communicate, converse or work with an individual
  • Sexual assault/abuse
  • Suggestive looks, leering, staring or gestures
  • Unwelcome and unsolicited sexual advances
  • Reprisal or threat of reprisal for the rejection of a sexual advance

If someone within the Membership criticizes the professional work or research of other individuals, including students and other conference participants, such criticism should be fair and should be communicated constructively, respectfully, and professionally. Individuals must also adhere to Science Atlantic’s Student Support Philosophy.

In order to contribute to an environment free from discrimination and harassment, Science Atlantic’s Membership is expected to treat all people fairly and with dignity. If you are unsure whether a remark, action or written comment may be considered offensive, do not make it.

The Membership is urged to speak up against harassment and discrimination. If you encounter misconduct of any nature, please report the incident immediately. The process for reporting issues of concern is outlined at the end of this Code of Conduct.

Confidentiality

Science Atlantic’s Membership must maintain the highest standards of confidentiality regarding information obtained directly or indirectly through involvement with Science Atlantic. This includes information about volunteers, Board Directors, committee members, member organizations, funders, donors, partners, conference attendees, and employees, as well as projects and initiatives of Science Atlantic. The Membership must avoid inadvertent or intentional disclosure of confidential information through casual or public discussion, which may be overheard or misinterpreted.

Conflict of Interest

Science Atlantic recognizes that there is an inherent conflict of interest for committee members given that they are also members of their home institution. In the case of a conflict in policy between Science Atlantic and the home institution of someone within the Membership, the institution is the overriding authority, and the conflict shall be addressed via the Institutional Representative (the institution’s Dean of Science or equivalent). The institution that a committee member belongs to also has the overriding responsibility for that committee member.

The Membership must act in the best interest of the organization and actively avoid situations where personal interests or relationships interfere with acting in good faith on behalf of the organization. The Membership may not engage in activities that are in conflict with the interests of Science Atlantic, that may negatively impact the reputation of Science Atlantic, or that interfere with job performance. The Membership must disclose any involvement with other organizations, businesses or individuals where such a relationship might be viewed as a conflict of interest. Disclosure should be to the Chair of the Board or the next available authority figure and must occur as soon as is reasonably possible once the conflict of interest surfaces. Written disclosure is preferable; should the conflict of interest surface arise in a meeting, it will be recorded in the meeting’s minutes. The Membership must place the interests of Science Atlantic above personal self-interest in all dealings with Science Atlantic, and may never use information obtained through the Membership for personal gain.

Attendance and Participation

The responsibilities of the Science Atlantic Membership differ according to each position, but in general, individuals within the Membership are expected to attend the meetings required of their positions and maintain active involvement in Science Atlantic and its endeavours. Details on the requirements of specific Membership positions will be available soon. Failure to participate adequately in a Science Atlantic Membership role is considered a form of misconduct. If an individual within the Membership misses two consecutive meetings, the Chair of the Board will discuss options to ensure their active contribution. If a solution cannot be reached, after four missed meetings, that individual will be removed from their position.

If a committee member is not participating adequately, the Chair of that committee should inform a Board Director.
See also: Duty of Care.

Whistleblower Policy

This policy is intended to encourage Board Directors or committee members, employees, volunteers, and others to report suspected or actual occurrence(s) of illegal, unethical, or inappropriate events, behaviours, or practices within Science Atlantic without retribution.

A Whistleblower should promptly report the suspected or actual event, anonymously or not, to either the Executive Director of Science Atlantic or the Chair of the Board of Directors. Should the report concern either or both of the individuals occupying these positions, the report can be made to the Chair of the Policy Overview Committee. The Whistleblower shall receive no retribution for a report that was provided in good faith (that was not done with malice to damage another person or Science Atlantic). Crimes against person or property, such as assault, rape, burglary, etc., should immediately be reported to local law enforcement personnel.

The Executive Director or Board Chair who receives the report must promptly act to investigate and/or resolve the issue. The Whistleblower shall receive a report within five business days of the initial report regarding the investigation of the issue.

The identity of the Whistleblower, if known, shall remain confidential to those persons directly involved in applying this policy, unless the issue requires investigation by law enforcement, in which case members of the organization are subject to subpoena.

Reporting Complaints and Concerns

The chain of reporting a perceived illegal, unethical, or inappropriate occurrence, including a violation of this Code of Conduct, is as follows:

  1. Executive Director (Lois Whitehead)
  2. Chair of the Board of Directors 
  3. If necessary: Chair of the Policy Overview Committee (Brent Myron)

Breach of Policy

Failure to adhere to this Code of Conduct or any of the policies of Science Atlantic may result in disciplinary action ranging from a written notification to dismissal from the organization in the case of Board Directors or committee members. In the latter case, a vote supporting a motion to dismiss by 2/3 of the Board will be required to ratify the decision. If the individual in question is a Board Director, they will not be permitted to vote on the issue of their dismissal. For more information on the removal of individuals within the Membership from their positions, see the Removal of Officers or Directors Policy (coming soon).

As outlined in Attendance and Participation, failure to adequately participate in a Science Atlantic Membership role may result in dismissal from that position.

A violation of Science Atlantic policy may also result in disqualification from the Science Atlantic Hall of Fame and the service pin program, which are only available to individuals within the Membership who are in good standing.

Approved October 2018

The Canadian Code for Volunteer Involvement

Click here to view the Canadian Code for Volunteer Involvement, provided by the HR Council for the Voluntary and Non-Profit Sector.

On This Page

Materials

Role & Responsiblities

Attend Board Meetings and Serve on Committees

To be a strong contributor to the Board, it is critical that Directors maximize their Board meeting attendance.  In order to contribute to decisions in a meaningful way, Directors need to be present at meetings so that they can fully understand discussions surrounding key decisions and ongoing issues.

It is expected that Directors will aim to attend at least 75% of Board meetings (six of eight meetings annually).  When unable to attend, the Director should ensure prompt communication to the Chair in advance and read all related minutes to ensure they are up-to-date on Board affairs.

Each Board Director is expected to be a lead on one of the initiatives of the organization’s Strategic Plan.  These portfolios will be assessed as needed.

Be Prepared

Directors should read Board package in advance of meetings (agenda, minutes, reports, etc.) and be familiar with other key board and organizational documents (Board Charter, by-laws, Annual Priorities document, financial statements, etc.).

Avoid any Conflicts of Interest

Directors should declare a conflict of interest when appropriate and should not allow self-interest to influence decisions of the Board.

Speak with One Voice

Once due process has occurred and a Board decision is made, all Directors should support the final decision of the Board. Directors can ask that decisions be reviewed if they believe that the decision was made without all the necessary information or due process.

Respect Various Perspectives

Directors should respectfully allow for fair consideration to opposing viewpoints.

Contribute Opinions and Support the Mission

Directors should offer personal perspectives and opinions during Board discussions and decisions and voice any opposition to decisions being taken by the Board. Directors should also be faithful to the mission and vision of Science Atlantic.

Maintain Confidentiality

Directors should maintain the confidentiality of information obtained by virtue of being a member of the Board.

Self-Assess Attendance and Contribution

Directors should self-assess their level of contribution to the Board and step down if necessary.

Approved November 20, 2015, January 2018; updated February 18, 2020

These responsibilities will be reviewed every two years.

Membership Code of Conduct

Definitions

i.“Members” refers to the institutions that comprise Science Atlantic.
ii. “Institutional Representative” refers to an individual (usually the Dean of Science or equivalent) representing a Member Institution.
iii. “Membership” refers to: members of Science Atlantic’s Board of Directors (henceforth referred to as “Directors”), Institutional Representatives, Committee Chairs, and members of Science Atlantic committees.

The Membership is committed to observing and promoting the highest standards of ethical conduct in the performance of their responsibilities. The Membership pledges to accept this Code as a minimum guideline for ethical conduct.

Representing the Organization

The Membership is expected to advocate for the organization and its mission within the public sphere. The Board of Directors should always speak with one voice. Any differences of opinion within the Board or a committee should be settled through discussion and voting by the entire membership of that body, and should not be disclosed to those who are not members of that body. It is considered misconduct to speak out against Science Atlantic, fellow members, staff, volunteers, or conference attendees to those outside of the organization. The Membership is expected to uphold the standards and values of Science Atlantic by supporting student endeavours affiliated with the organization in all capacities. See also: Duty of Care.

Duty of Care 

The Duty of Care refers to the level of competence that is expected of the Membership and is here defined as “the duty of care that an ordinarily prudent person would exercise in a like position and under similar circumstances.” The Duty of Care requires the Membership of Science Atlantic to exercise reasonable diligence and due care in conducting Science Atlantic’s affairs. At a minimum, they must fulfill the duties of their job descriptions and stay informed of the activities of Science Atlantic by regularly attending their required meetings and understanding how Science Atlantic functions under its bylaws and this Code of Conduct. Board Directors must act in good faith as they make decisions and seek always to avoid the misuse or waste of Science Atlantic’s assets. See also: Attendance and Participation.

Use of Authority

The Membership of Science Atlantic must adhere to the details of individual position descriptions, as well as the policies and bylaws of Science Atlantic as they relate to those positions. Individuals within the Membership should recognize their authority and not overstep into the authority of the Executive Director with staff or with external partners. For more information on the job descriptions of specific Membership positions, see Job Descriptions (coming soon).

Treatment of Other Members, Staff, and Volunteers

Science Atlantic is committed to providing an environment of safety and respect for its Membership, volunteers, employees, and participants. The Membership is expected to comply with this Code of Conduct, and in doing so, agrees not to discriminate based on any of the prohibited grounds of discrimination, as outlined by the Canadian Human Rights Act. Discrimination is defined as adverse treatment against an individual or group based on one or more of these grounds.

Communications among the Membership, staff and volunteers should be respectful, constructive and professional at all times.

Furthermore, harassment, interpreted as unwelcome conduct, comment, gesture, contact, or intimidating and offensive behaviour likely to cause offence or humiliation, is not to be tolerated. Harassment may be based on the grounds listed above, or may be personal.

The following are examples of inappropriate conduct that may be in violation of this Membership Code of Conduct:

  • Derogatory or inappropriate comments, teasing, bullying, innuendoes or taunting
  • Display or circulation of inappropriate, derogatory or offensive written materials, cartoons or pictures
  • Inappropriate physical contact
  • Physical or verbal abuse
  • Refusing to communicate, converse or work with an individual
  • Sexual assault/abuse
  • Suggestive looks, leering, staring or gestures
  • Unwelcome and unsolicited sexual advances
  • Reprisal or threat of reprisal for the rejection of a sexual advance

If someone within the Membership criticizes the professional work or research of other individuals, including students and other conference participants, such criticism should be fair and should be communicated constructively, respectfully, and professionally. Individuals must also adhere to Science Atlantic’s Student Support Philosophy.

In order to contribute to an environment free from discrimination and harassment, Science Atlantic’s Membership is expected to treat all people fairly and with dignity. If you are unsure whether a remark, action or written comment may be considered offensive, do not make it.

The Membership is urged to speak up against harassment and discrimination. If you encounter misconduct of any nature, please report the incident immediately. The process for reporting issues of concern is outlined at the end of this Code of Conduct.

Confidentiality

Science Atlantic’s Membership must maintain the highest standards of confidentiality regarding information obtained directly or indirectly through involvement with Science Atlantic. This includes information about volunteers, Board Directors, committee members, member organizations, funders, donors, partners, conference attendees, and employees, as well as projects and initiatives of Science Atlantic. The Membership must avoid inadvertent or intentional disclosure of confidential information through casual or public discussion, which may be overheard or misinterpreted.

Conflict of Interest

Science Atlantic recognizes that there is an inherent conflict of interest for committee members given that they are also members of their home institution. In the case of a conflict in policy between Science Atlantic and the home institution of someone within the Membership, the institution is the overriding authority, and the conflict shall be addressed via the Institutional Representative (the institution’s Dean of Science or equivalent). The institution that a committee member belongs to also has the overriding responsibility for that committee member.

The Membership must act in the best interest of the organization and actively avoid situations where personal interests or relationships interfere with acting in good faith on behalf of the organization. The Membership may not engage in activities that are in conflict with the interests of Science Atlantic, that may negatively impact the reputation of Science Atlantic, or that interfere with job performance. The Membership must disclose any involvement with other organizations, businesses or individuals where such a relationship might be viewed as a conflict of interest. Disclosure should be to the Chair of the Board or the next available authority figure and must occur as soon as is reasonably possible once the conflict of interest surfaces. Written disclosure is preferable; should the conflict of interest surface arise in a meeting, it will be recorded in the meeting’s minutes. The Membership must place the interests of Science Atlantic above personal self-interest in all dealings with Science Atlantic, and may never use information obtained through the Membership for personal gain.

Attendance and Participation

The responsibilities of the Science Atlantic Membership differ according to each position, but in general, individuals within the Membership are expected to attend the meetings required of their positions and maintain active involvement in Science Atlantic and its endeavours. Details on the requirements of specific Membership positions will be available soon. Failure to participate adequately in a Science Atlantic Membership role is considered a form of misconduct. If an individual within the Membership misses two consecutive meetings, the Chair of the Board will discuss options to ensure their active contribution. If a solution cannot be reached, after four missed meetings, that individual will be removed from their position.

If a committee member is not participating adequately, the Chair of that committee should inform a Board Director.
See also: Duty of Care.

Whistleblower Policy

This policy is intended to encourage Board Directors or committee members, employees, volunteers, and others to report suspected or actual occurrence(s) of illegal, unethical, or inappropriate events, behaviours, or practices within Science Atlantic without retribution.

A Whistleblower should promptly report the suspected or actual event, anonymously or not, to either the Executive Director of Science Atlantic or the Chair of the Board of Directors. Should the report concern either or both of the individuals occupying these positions, the report can be made to the Chair of the Policy Overview Committee. The Whistleblower shall receive no retribution for a report that was provided in good faith (that was not done with malice to damage another person or Science Atlantic). Crimes against person or property, such as assault, rape, burglary, etc., should immediately be reported to local law enforcement personnel.

The Executive Director or Board Chair who receives the report must promptly act to investigate and/or resolve the issue. The Whistleblower shall receive a report within five business days of the initial report regarding the investigation of the issue.

The identity of the Whistleblower, if known, shall remain confidential to those persons directly involved in applying this policy, unless the issue requires investigation by law enforcement, in which case members of the organization are subject to subpoena.

Reporting Complaints and Concerns

The chain of reporting a perceived illegal, unethical, or inappropriate occurrence, including a violation of this Code of Conduct, is as follows:

  1. Executive Director (Lois Whitehead)
  2. Chair of the Board of Directors 
  3. If necessary: Chair of the Policy Overview Committee (Brent Myron)

Breach of Policy

Failure to adhere to this Code of Conduct or any of the policies of Science Atlantic may result in disciplinary action ranging from a written notification to dismissal from the organization in the case of Board Directors or committee members. In the latter case, a vote supporting a motion to dismiss by 2/3 of the Board will be required to ratify the decision. If the individual in question is a Board Director, they will not be permitted to vote on the issue of their dismissal. For more information on the removal of individuals within the Membership from their positions, see the Removal of Officers or Directors Policy (coming soon).

As outlined in Attendance and Participation, failure to adequately participate in a Science Atlantic Membership role may result in dismissal from that position.

A violation of Science Atlantic policy may also result in disqualification from the Science Atlantic Hall of Fame and the service pin program, which are only available to individuals within the Membership who are in good standing.

Approved October 2018

The Canadian Code for Volunteer Involvement

Click here to view the Canadian Code for Volunteer Involvement, provided by the HR Council for the Voluntary and Non-Profit Sector.