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Guidelines for application for ICO membership

The ICO welcomes membership application from bodies that are representative of optical science and engineering communities in identified geographical territories. ICO member territories may not overlap. They often correspond to countries, but in some cases it is appropriate to have several territories for one country or one territory for several countries.

Although, of course, an ICO membership application involves some administration, it usually consists of one to three pages. It may in some cases, however, require prior registration of the applicant territorial committee under local rules. The present guidelines are intended to facilitate the procedure.

Full information about the procedures applicable is to be found in:

  1. Articles 3a and 4  of the ICO Statutes.
  2. Article 2 of the ICO Rules and Codes of Practice.

In addition, the following documents may be sent upon request by the ICO Secretariat: information about ICSU and the free circulation of scientists, ICO history, selection of recent issues of the ICO Newsletter, sample Territorial Committee statutes, addresses of IUPAP member Committees.  

Completed applications should be sent to the ICO Secretariat. In any event, early contacts are most welcome for most efficient action.

One frequent question is how to set up the Territorial Committee organization; this will often imply establishing statutes. Short but precise statutes are usually appropriate. The following guidelines should in general suffice:

  • the statutes should make sure that the ICO Member Territorial Committee is representative of the whole Community of Opticists in the Territory and that it maintains close contact with it ;
  • there should be an executive board, consisting for example of a chairperson and a secretary and/or a treasurer, with well defined rules for their appointment in relation with the Opticists in the Territory and term of office ;
  • if there is a territorial optical society with individual members in the territory (or a physics society with an optical division), it is often a good solution to have the leadership of the society (division) automatically serve as Territorial Committee ; if there is no such society, the newly established committee may consider taking up the initiative of organizing any territorial meetings, schools, seminars, exhibits,... that appear appropriate. Another good solution is to establish a subcommittee of the IUPAP Liaison Committee in the Territory if it exists.

As a suggestions to help with the process, please see a sample for an application letter in its simplest form, requiring no special statutes aside those included in the letter itself.

In 2011-2014, the annual unit membership fee is US$235. The number of units depends on the country and is the same for ICO as for IUPAP whenever a given Territory is a member of both organizations. 

I am looking forward to hearing from you.

With best regards,
Angela M. Guzmán, Secretary, ICO