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59th ICCA Congress 2020, Kaohsiung, Chinese Taipei

ICCA Chapter Guidelines

Purpose of these guidelines

To provide a consistent yet flexible framework for regional groups of ICCA members around the world to organise their activity programmes and deliver ICCA member benefits and competitive advantage at the regional level. ICCA recognises that different local business cultures and traditions, legal requirements, and member objectives will result in differences between Chapter structures and activities. At the same time, Chapters should not act in a manner that conflict with ICCA’s objectives nor with each member’s individual rights.

ICCA’s aim is to give Chapters maximum freedom to develop programmes that will benefit ICCA members in the Chapter region, with the minimum of bureaucratic oversight but with full transparency of decision making, financial management, and governance.

Legal status of Chapters

  • Chapters are voluntary groupings of ICCA members covering two or more countries.   
  • Chapters may not charge membership fees, nor prevent ICCA members based in their region from being members of the Chapter.
  • Chapters may be required by the laws of one or more countries to undertake a formal registration or foundation process. ICCA Head Office should be informed about the legal status of the Chapter, including any such formal registration, and should be sent a copy of any relevant legal papers, in both original language and English translation. Any changes to the legal status of Chapters must be communicated to ICCA Head Office. 
  • Each Chapter should have a published set of rules (in some cases where they must be set up as a legal entity, this may require Articles of Association, in other cases they can be far simpler). These should not contradict these Chapter Guidelines, and Chapters are required to ensure ICCA Head Office is always sent the most current version. 
  • Groups of ICCA members from a geographical area may ask the ICCA Board of Directors to agree to the creation of a new Chapter. The Board will take into account the status and activity levels of existing Chapters, plus the views of members in the affected region before approving such a move. Since all regions of the world are currently covered by existing Chapters, the creation of a new Chapter will require the splitting of an existing Chapter, which will require a full consultation process before it can be approved by the ICCA Board.
  • Each Chapter must meet at least once a year at the ICCA General Assembly/ Congress.

Membership rights

  • All ICCA members have the right to belong automatically to one Chapter only. In certain instances a particular country may potentially be part of more than one Chapter (ICCA Head Office holds all such data), in which case it is the choice of the individual member as to which of these Chapters they belong.
  • All members in good standing (i.e. whose payments are up to date) who qualify for Chapter membership are entitled to one vote per member organisation on matters affecting the Chapter, with voting rights exercised either in person or electronically. ICCA Head Office holds full records of voting rights per Chapter and should be consulted in advance of any formal vote.
  • All members in the Chapter area have the right of full access to the financial reports and related decisions of the Chapter, which should be made available on an annual basis as a minimum requirement.


  • The Chapter must elect a Chairperson, whose term will be for two years, and who may stand for up to three terms (consecutively). This process must be a formal election with all qualifying Chapter members having the right to vote, and may include a rotation process (e.g. between country representatives) that is either a traditional practice within the Chapter, or if new must be approved by vote of all qualifying members. The Chairperson acts as the key contact person between the Chapter and Head Office, and between the Chapter and the ICCA Board of Directors.
  • Should the Chapter be unable to identify another member willing to stand for election as Chairperson at the end of an incumbent’s three terms of office, in these exceptional circumstances ICCA Board of Directors may approve a fourth term.
  • The Chapter must elect a Deputy Chairperson, whose term will be for two years and who may stand for up to three terms (consecutively). This process must be a formal election with all qualifying Chapter members having the right to vote, and may include a rotation process (e.g. between country representatives) that is either a traditional practice within the Chapter, or if new must be approved by vote of all qualifying members. The Deputy Chairperson can choose to stand for Chairperson after his/her two year elected term or his/her re-elected term(s) has ended. 
  • Chapters may also elect a Treasurer and Secretary, or may appoint persons to undertake these tasks, or may set up an Executive or Working Group to administer the Chapter activities. Should any post be elected, all qualifying members have the right to vote. Should these posts or an Executive Group be appointed, this should either be an existing traditional practice within the Chapter, or if this a new proposal it should be approved by vote of all qualifying members in the Chapter.
  • All formal elections will be supervised by ICCA Head Office, to ensure that all members’ voting rights are met and that decisions/results are fully transparent.
  • Only official contact persons of an ICCA member company or organisation may stand for formal election for any ICCA representative post, and must give up that position should they cease to be the official contact. However, other individuals working for ICCA member companies may serve on working groups. This is to ensure that formal governance is clearly restricted to official contacts, without restricting the Chapter’s ability to call upon the skills and enthusiasm of other volunteers within the Chapter.

Chapter reporting requirements

  • Chapters should send an annual Activity Plan (including outline budget) for the forthcoming calendar year to ICCA Head Office, which will be shared with other Chapters.
  • At the end of the year Chapters should produce a short report on the past year’s activities, which again will be circulated to other Chapters.
  • Chapters should submit an annual Financial Statement to ICCA Head Office showing clearly all revenue received (including allocations from ICCA’s main budget) and expenditure undertaken during the past calendar year, and any net balance held. If the Chapter operates its own bank account, a copy of the annual statement of this account should be included. Chapters must clearly communicate to ICCA Head Office how banking arrangements will be handled, with ICCA reserving the right to recommend changes in the interests of transparency and security of members’ assets.
  • Chapters should consult with ICCA Head Office at the planning stage of any major Chapter event, so that assistance can be offered with regard to possible guest speakers, ICCA Data training, ICCA Board or staff representation, use of ICCA tools (e.g. for managing Business Exchanges) and to avoid clashes with other scheduled events.

Chapter scope of activities

Chapters may undertake any or all of the following activities:

  • Education of members: both general meetings industry issues and ICCA-specific topics.
  • Business exchange and client-supplier activities.
  • Activities that stimulate business relationships between Chapter members.
  • Advocacy campaigns and meetings industry development work.
  • Promotion of the Chapter region to specific meetings market segments or geographical regions.
  • Development of research projects.
  • Bidding to host future ICCA events.
  • Support ICCA Head Office to identify and recruit potential new members.
  • Support ICCA Head Office communication of ICCA benefits and new developments.
  • Provide feedback on important market developments in the Chapter region to ICCA Head Office.
  • Organise collaborative educational/networking events with other Chapters.
  • Chapters should if possible avoid scheduling any events that conflict with the dates of ICCA’s two largest events: the ICCA Annual Congress and the Research, Sales & Marketing Programme.

ICCA branding issues

Material produced by the Chapter, in electronic or printed form, should adhere to ICCA corporate identity guidelines. A full set of resources will be made available to Chapters to assist them in adhering to these standards.

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