Section on Inequality, Poverty and Mobility
By-Laws Approved at Organizational Meeting, August 14, 2010* Amended 2013
The purpose of the Section on Inequality, Poverty, and Mobility is to foster research and disseminate knowledge on the distribution of material and nonmaterial resources, and the economic, social, and cultural forces that generate and perpetuate unequal distributions of these resources. The Section welcomes members of all theoretical and methodological persuasions and embraces work that considers inequalities in all institutions and social contexts.
Officers and Council
The governance structure shall be comprised of Chair, Chair-Elect, Past-Chair, SecretaryTreasurer, and a six member Council. The Chair shall be elected to a one-year term, the Secretary-Treasurer to a three-year term. The Chair-Elect shall automatically become Chair in the year following his/her term as Chair-Elect, and in the year subsequent to that become Past-Chair. Council members shall serve staggered three-year terms with two new members elected each year. Two graduate-student representatives shall be appointed by Council to staggered two-year terms. Officers may not succeed themselves. The Chair, Chair-Elect, and Past-Chair shall serve as ex-officio members of the Council, with the Chair of the Section conducting Council meetings. The Chair and Chair-Elect shall be responsible for determining the academic program of the Section, in consultation with the Past-Chair, Council, and membership at large. The Secretary-Treasurer shall be responsible for taking and circulating minutes of business meetings, and for keeping and presenting official documents and financial records for the Section. The Council is vested with the power to carry out all necessary operations for the Section, acting as the representative of the membership of the Section. It shall make decisions by majority rule of its assembled members. The Council shall meet during the Annual Meetings of the American Sociological Association (ASA) and may meet at other times when more than half of the Council can be assembled, whether in person or through electronic means. Responsibilities of the Council include cooperating with the ASA Program Committee in planning Section sessions and activities for the Annual Meetings of the Association, appointing members to some standing Committees, and developing program and policy initiatives to advance the Section’s goals.
Elections and Nominations
All regular members of the Section shall be eligible for election as officers and Council members. Section members may be nominated for any office by a petition of ten percent of Section members or by 25 Section members, whichever is less. The Nominating Committee shall present at least two candidates for each office and shall make these choices known to the membership at least 60 days prior to the deadline for receiving nominations by petition. Section elections shall be carried out in cooperation with the ASA and coordinated to their schedule. Newly elected officers and Council members shall assume office immediately after the adjournment of the Business Meeting of the Section at the Annual Meeting of the ASA. Chair-Elect and Secretary-Treasurer shall be elected on the basis of a simple majority of voting Section members. Candidates for Council receiving the largest numbers of votes shall be elected. If an elected office is vacated before the term is completed, it shall be filled for the unexpired term through appointment by the highest ranking officer, subject to confirmation by the Council. For this purpose, the ranking of officers shall be Chair, Chair-Elect, Past Chair, and Secretary-Treasurer.
Any three members of the Council may bring a referendum to Section membership for approval. Referenda may also be brought by a petition of 10 percent of Section members, or by 25 Section members (whichever is less). Any resolution passed at the Annual Business Meeting of the Section shall be referred to Council. If it is not accepted by the Council, it shall be submitted to the membership by mail ballot. Amendment of Section By-Laws requires approval by a majority of the Council (including ex officio members) and approval of a majority of Section members submitting ballots on the amendment. The outcome of other referenda shall be determined by a simple majority of voting members.
Membership and Dues
The regular membership of the Section shall be drawn from the members of the ASA. Scholars and students who are not members of the ASA and are neither citizens nor permanent residents of the USA may request the status of “honorary” member. Honorary members may participate in all activities of the Section but shall not have voting rights or be eligible to hold elected Section positions. Any member of the ASA may become a member of the Section. Dues shall be set by the Council to cover the operation of the Section in accordance with the requirements of the ASA. Members who do not pay their Section dues shall be suspended and dropped from the rolls after two years.
The Section shall sponsor the following awards: Outstanding Book, Outstanding Article, Outstanding Graduate Student Paper, Distinguished Scholar, and Early Career.
Outstanding Book Award: Awarded annually for a book nominated by a Section member and published in the three calendar years preceding the ASA annual meeting at which the award is bestowed.
Outstanding Article Award: Sponsored annually for an article nominated by a Section member and published in the calendar year preceding the ASA annual meetings.
Outstanding Graduate Student Paper Award: Sponsored annually for a graduate student paper presented at a professional conference during the calendar year preceding the ASA annual meetings or published during the same time period. Papers must be nominated by a Section member.
Distinguished Scholar Award: Awarded annually by the Nominations Committee to mark and celebrate the field’s most fundamental accomplishments.
Early Career Award: Awarded annually by the Nominations Committee to recognize a scholar who has made major contributions early in his/her career. Persons who received their highest degree within the previous ten years shall be eligible to receive this award.
The Section shall have the following standing committees: Program and Activities, Nominations, Book Award, Article Award, Graduate Paper Award, Student Outreach, Web/Publications, and Membership.
The Program and Activities Committee shall develop sessions for the annual meeting of the ASA in cooperation with the ASA Program Committee and initiate and promote other activities and events that advance the purposes of the Section. The Committee shall be comprised of the Chair (who shall chair the committee) and two other members who are selected by the Chair and approved by Council, including its ex officio members.
The Nominations Committee shall present at least two candidates for each office to be voted on by members of the Section. It shall also be responsible for selecting a recipient for the annual Distinguished Scholar and Early Career Awards. The Nominations Committee shall be comprised of one member of Council (who shall chair the committee) and three other members selected by the Nominations Committee Chair and the Section Chair and approved by Council. Each committee member shall be appointed for a oneyear term, and no member may serve for more than two consecutive years.
The Book Award Committee shall be comprised of three members, each of whom serves a one-year term. One shall be a member of Council, one shall be a recipient of the previous year’s book award (if possible), and one will be selected by the Book Award Committee chair in consultation with the Chair. The chair of the Committee will be selected by the section Chair and approved by Council.
The Article Award Committee shall be comprised of three members, each of whom serves a one-year term. One shall be a member of Council, one shall be a recipient of the previous year’s article award (if possible), and one will be selected by the Article Award Committee chair in consultation with the Chair. The chair of the Committee will be selected by the section Chair and approved by Council.
The Graduate Paper Award Committee shall be comprised of three members, each of whom serves a one-year term. One shall be a member of Council, one shall be a recipient of the previous year’s article award (if possible), and one will be selected by the Committee chair in consultation with the Chair. The chair of the Committee will be selected by the section Chair and approved by Council.
The Student Outreach Committee shall be responsible for recruiting student members and developing proposals for programs and events that engage students in Section activities and promote their professional training and employment. The Committee shall be comprised of the two graduate student members of Council (one of whom shall serve as Chair) and two other members appointed by Council, who will serve staggered two-year terms.
The Web Committee shall be responsible for managing the Section’s web site. The Committee shall assemble and post Section information, news items, and communications from Section officers and members. It shall be comprised of a Webmaster and at least two other members. The Webmaster and the Committee members shall be appointed by the Section Chair to three-year terms (renewable with approval by Council).
The Membership Committee shall be responsible for recruitment of new members, maintenance of membership records and management of Section list servers. The Committee Chair and two Committee members, including a member of the Student Outreach Committee, shall be appointed by the Section Chair to two-year terms (renewable with approval by Council).
Other committees shall be appointed by the Section Chair with the approval of Council on an ad hoc basis. The Council may create, eliminate or resize committees as necessary to manage section affairs. The Council may change the name of any committee or award.
Drafted by the By-Laws Committee: Maria Charles (Chair) Salvatore Babones Lisa Catanzarite