1. Purpose
  2. Mission
    1. Research
    2. Programs
    3. Standards
  3. Finances
    1. Dues
    2. Fundraising
    3. Other Financial Matters
  4. AdCom
    1. Size of the Elected AdCom and Terms of AdCom members-at-Large
    2. Agreement to Attend Meetings
    3. Absence from Meetings
  5. Officers
    1. President
    2. Vice President
    3. Treasurer
    4. Secretary
  6. Standing Committees
    1. Awards
    2. Chapters and Regional Activities
    3. Editorial Advisory
    4. Education
    5. Electronic Information
    6. Meetings
    7. Membership
    8. Nominating
    9. Publicity and Marketing
  7. Elections
  8. Amendments

1. Purpose

These bylaws are a detailed guide to the management and activities of the IEEE Professional Communication Society. They expand on and complement the organization and structure of the Society as defined in the Society’s Constitution.

2. Mission

The Society’s primary mission is to foster a community dedicated to understanding and promoting effective communication in engineering, scientific, and other technical environments.

To this end, the IEEE Professional Communication Society endeavors to:

  • Advance technical and scientific communication as an essential element of engineering
  • Help engineers, scientists, and other technically oriented professionals to communicate better in the workplace–both in speaking and in writing, both verbally and nonverbally
  • Promote and disseminate best practices and research results on the development, maintenance, delivery, and management of technical content
  • Promote and facilitate leading-edge education and training of engineers, scientists, and other technically oriented professionals in communication theory and practice.

PCS achieves these goals through research, programs, and standards activities.

A. Research

The Society fosters research and development of new theories and techniques related to technical and scientific communication. This effort is undertaken as deemed appropriate by the Society’s Administrative Committee (AdCom), and may include studies conducted for or in cooperation with IEEE or other professional organizations.

B. Programs

The Society fosters continuing education related to technical and scientific communication by means of programs, including conferences, seminars, courses, publications in various media, and other offerings.

C. Standards

The Society may propose professional standards related to technical and scientific communication. Ordinarily, such work is performed in cooperation with IEEE and other professional organizations to ensure support of both practicing engineers and technical communication colleagues outside of IEEE.

3. Finances

A. Dues

As part of the annual budgeting process, the AdCom shall review and reconfirm or adjust the annual membership fee. Any change shall be reported promptly to the membership through the Newsletter or another appropriate means.

B. Fundraising

  1. The Society may raise funds as specified in Article 5, Section 5 of the Society’s Constitution and in the IEEE Bylaws and rules and regulations.
  2. The Society may charge its members, affiliates, and nonmembers for special publications and other special services furnished at their request.
  3. The Society may raise revenues by other means such as advertising, shows, and requests for contributions, providing that such means are consistent with applicable IEEE rules and regulations, and do not encroach on other IEEE societies or sections. The IEEE General Manager must approve any new revenue source not explicitly covered by IEEE rules and regulations before its adoption by the Society.
  4. The Society may charge nonmembers for regular Society publications and may impose a shipping and handling surcharge to cover those expenses.

C. Other Financial Matters

  1. Each conference, seminar, or other similar activity will utilize IEEE consolidated banking for the deposit and disbursement of funds related to that activity. Establishment of accounts for such activities should be coordinated by the Society treasurer.
  2. An activity involving financial commitment by the Society may be jointly sponsored with any other technical society of IEEE or other organization when the AdCom and IEEE approve the charter of operations of that society or organization. For other special circumstances, the AdCom shall arrange specific safeguard of Society funds.

4. AdCom

A. Size of the Elected AdCom and Terms of AdCom Members-at-Large

The elected AdCom shall consist of 12 members-at-large, each of whom is elected to a three-year term. One third of the members shall be elected each year. In addition, appointed officers, the most recent past president, chairs of standing committees, if they are not elected AdCom members-at-large, the editors of the Transactions and Newsletter, and the Webmaster are ex-officio members of the AdCom.

B. Agreement to Attend Meetings

When they agree to be nominated, candidates for the AdCom member-at-large positions and appointed officers who are not members-at-large shall commit to attend the one physical meeting held each year. Other ex-officio AdCom members may attend meetings as needed in the course of performing their duties, but they are not obligated to do so.

C. Absence from Meetings

When an AdCom member-at-large or appointed officer who is not an AdCom member-at-large has failed to attend the second consecutive physical AdCom meeting, the president shall poll the individual to determine whether he or she will attend future AdCom meetings or wishes to resign.

5. Officers

A. President

  1. The president is responsible for the general supervision of the Society’s affairs; presides at all meetings of the AdCom and at general Society meetings; and is an ex-officio member of all Society committees.
  2. The president is a voting member of the IEEE Technical Activities Board (TAB) and represents the Society’s interests at meetings and other TAB activities.
  3. The president represents the Society and its interests at joint meetings of the Society or its leadership with the members or leadership of one or more other IEEE societies or other organizations.
  4. The president’s term of office is one year; traditionally, the president serves two consecutive terms.
  5. The presiding officer of the Administrative Committee shall have no vote on the Administrative Committee unless the vote is by secret ballot or unless the chair’s vote can change the outcome of the vote.

B. Vice President

  1. The vice president represents the president whenever the president is absent or otherwise is unable to perform the duties of office. The vice president is the society’s authorized alternate voting member of the IEEE Technical Activities Board when the president is unable to attend meetings of that body.
  2. Because of the significant role the annual International Professional Communication Conference (IPCC) plays in the Society’s finances as well as in its image both within and outside the Institute, the vice president is also the chair of the Meetings Committee.
  3. The vice president’s term of office is one year; traditionally, the vice president serves two consecutive terms.

C. Treasurer

  1. The treasurer is responsible for the financial management of the Society. Specifically, the treasurer is responsible for:
    • Preparing an annual budget for discussion and approval by the AdCom
    • Reporting to the AdCom on the Society’s financial status at each AdCom meeting and at other times when the Society’s financial status warrants
    • Serving as liaison between the Society and IEEE on budgetary and financial matters
    • Authorizing reimbursement of Society members by IEEE for expenses incurred as part of their Society responsibilities as members of the AdCom or of standing or ad hoc committees (providing that such expenditures have been approved in advance by the AdCom)
    • Working with the chairs of standing and ad hoc committees on the financial details of activities they undertake
  2. The treasurer may delegate any of these duties to an appointed assistant treasurer approved by the AdCom.
  3. The treasurer is appointed by the president for a one-year term.

D. Secretary

  1. The secretary is responsible for preparing and distributing notices as directed by the AdCom; preparing the agenda for and recording the minutes of all AdCom or general Society meetings; and preparing reports of the Society’s activities as required by the AdCom, TAB, or IEEE Bylaws.
  2. The secretary is appointed by the president for a one-year term.

6. Standing Committees

The president shall appoint the following standing committees and their chairs with the approval of the AdCom as soon as possible after each annual election.

A. Awards

  1. The Awards Committee is responsible for administering the Society’s awards programs:
    • The Alfred N. Goldsmith Award (for outstanding achievement in engineering communication)
    • The Emily K. Schlesinger Award (for outstanding service to PCS)
    • The Rudolph J. Joenk, Jr. Award for Best Paper in the IEEE Transactions on Professional Communication
    • The Ronald S. Blicq Award for Distinction in Technical Communication Education
    • The IPCC Best Paper Award
  2. To execute these responsibilities, the committee:
    • Solicits nominations from the membership and the AdCom for the Goldsmith and Blicq awards
    • Evaluates the qualifications of potential nominees for these awards
    • Nominates qualified candidates for the awards
    • Conducts balloting for the awards by the AdCom
    • Prepares the recognition items for all awards, including the Joenk and IPCC Best Paper awards (the winning article is chosen by the Editorial Advisory Committee; the best paper is selected by the IPCC program committee)

B. Chapters and Regional Activities

  1. The Chapter and Regional Activities Committee establishes and maintains communication with Society chapters, IEEE sections in particular geographic areas, and student organizations, and it fosters communication among all PCS members within the various IEEE regions. It serves as a liaison between the chapters, sections, and student organizations and the AdCom, and represents the Society at chapter and section meetings and at meetings of related communication organizations held in those areas.
  2. To execute these responsibilities, the committee:
    • Regularly contacts the chairs of PCS chapters for reports on chapter activities
    • Communicates chapter concerns, issues, and budgetary requests to the AdCom
    • Maintains contacts with sections that have PCS chapters and works to encourage growth of new chapters

C. Editorial Advisory

  1. The Editorial Advisory Committee (EAC) is both an advisory resource for the AdCom and a support group for the Society’s editors.  Its mission is to enhance the quality and promote the professional stature of PCS communication products.
  2. To execute these responsibilities, the committee:
    • Advises on matters referred to it by the Society officers, AdCom, or editors
    • Evaluates and recommends changes in publication policies and procedures
    • Monitors and reports to the AdCom on the quality of PCS commu­nication products, and recommends remedial action when appro­priate
    • In coordination with the PCS–IEEE Press liaison, reviews proposals for PCS‑sponsored books and makes recommendations to the AdCom
    • Acts as ombudsman in author–editor issues
    • Selects the winner of the annual Transactions Best Article Award

D. Education

  1. The Education Committee is responsible for developing programs and publications to provide a better understanding of the theories and techniques of effective technical communication. It also supports and evaluates the educational activities and publications of IEEE and other organizations that contribute to the Society’s objectives.
  2. To execute those responsibilities the committee:
    • Develops practical courses on technical communication topics
    • Presents courses to IEEE entities, industry, and academia
    • Communicates with current and potential instructors in PCS
    • Maintains representation at PACE and other conferences
    • Publicizes the need for formal creation of advanced communication courses
    • Cooperates with the IEEE Educational Activities Board, the IEEE Educational Activities Committee, and other IEEE entities
    • Works with other IEEE Societies to seek mutual education opportunities

E. Electronic Information

  1. The Electronic Information Committee examines and recommends techniques that promote the effective use of digital media in communicating scientific and engineering information in general, and informs PCS members of the existence, features, limitations, and practical uses of such technologies.The committee provides a forum where PCS members and industry experts who have experience with a particular technology can share their knowledge with the Society at large. The Electronic Information Committee also identifies and (with approval of the AdCom) implements technologies that can aid PCS in conducting its business.
  2. To execute this mission, the Electronic Information Committee:
    • Conducts projects that advance the use of electronic information technology in technical communication and in the conduct of Society business
    • Identifies experts in the field of digital media presentation and encourages and assists these experts in preparing contributions to PCS publications, conferences, and courses
    • Uses e-mail, PCS Web pages (in cooperation with the Publicity and Marketing Committee), list servers, online forums, conferences, the PCS Newsletter and Transactions, and other media and technologies to present information

F. Meetings

  1. The Meetings Committee plans, arranges, promotes, and manages the major meetings of the Society, especially the annual International Professional Communication Conference (IPCC). It cooperates with other Society committees in arranging programs at Society meetings, with the program committees of other IEEE societies in arranging participation in IEEE national and international meetings, and with other technical and scientific communication societies in arranging cosponsored or cooperative meetings.The planning committees for the annual IPCCs are subcommittees of the Meetings Committee. At a minimum, the Meetings Committee consists of a chair and the general chairs of the past two years’ IPCC, the general chair of the current year’s IPCC, and the general chairs of any future IPCC who have already been appointed.The chair may also appoint other members with conference expertise who can serve as advisors and mentors to current and future conference chairs, and contribute their knowledge to the planning of future conferences and to the resolution of problems that may arise in the planning for conferences.
  2. To execute these responsibilities, the committee:
    • Recruits prospective general chairs for future IPCCs for approval by the AdCom
    • Works with appointed general chairs to develop conference committees
    • Identifies potential locations for future conferences
    • Advises the conference committees and the AdCom on matters of conference policy and ways to avoid potential problems

G. Membership

  1. The Membership Committee is responsible for recruiting and sustaining membership in the Society from the membership of IEEE and eligible technical communicators and members of related professions. The committee is also responsible for maintaining appropriate membership records, initiating the upgrading of current members, establishing contact with new members, and publishing membership information to support recruiting activities.
  2. To execute these responsibilities, the committee:
    • Conducts membership campaigns in cooperation with conference chairs, chapter and section chairs, and the Publicity and Marketing Committee
    • Contacts new members to welcome them and encourage their participation in the Society
    • Contacts members who do not renew to identify their reasons for not renewing

H. Nominating

  1. The Nominating Committee is a standing committee responsible for identifying a slate of candidates forthe annual Society election. The composition of the committee is specified in the PCS Constitution, Article 4, Section 3.
  2. To execute these responsibilities, the committee:
    • Invites PCS members each spring to declare their candidacy for all elected positions to be filled in the next fall’s elections. This invitation must be publicized by post to all members, or by e-mail to those members for whom the Society has a valid e-mail address and by post to any members for whom the Society has no valid e-mail address. The invitation will include a request for ballot information in the form of a questionnaire.
    • Vets the credentials of those applying after the deadline for applications has passed to ensure that they meet the requirements of the Society and the IEEE
    • Selects from among the eligible candidates a slate of candidates as specified by the Constitution. The selected candidates and their answers to the questionnaire shall be presented in the manner prescribed by the nominating committee to all members of the Society who are eligible to vote.

I. Publicity and Marketing

  1. The Publicity and Marketing Committee is responsible for coordinating with Society officers and standing committees to develop and guide the implementation of the Society’s marketing strategy. The committee helps prepare and disseminate news and information about the Society’s membership opportunities, activities, and achievements.  The committee also works with the standing committees and officers to establish and maintain communication channels with appropriate media to secure suitable publicity.
  2. To execute these responsibilities, the committee:
    • Coordinates with the officers to develop a marketing strategy to ensures that the Society has defined the appropriate products, pricing, and promotions to effectively target its selected markets
    • Coordinates with the officers and appropriate committee chairs to ensure that the Society’s marketing strategy and communications are executed in a consistent, professional, and timely manner
    • As requested, coordinates with the Membership, Meetings, and Education committees to prepare and arrange for publication of publicity
    • Coordinates with the president to prepare and arrange for publication of general news items and announcements concerning the Society’s activities and members
    • Administers the hosting details, Web page development, and maintenance of the PCS Web site

7. Elections

Each year, four AdCom member-at-large seats shall be filled by election as follows.

Two seats shall be filled by election by current members of the Society in good standing from among the slate presented by the nominating committee. That election shall be conducted prior to the fall AdCom meeting in the manner prescribed by the nominating committee. The two candidates receiving the greatest number of votes in the balloting shall be declared elected. In case of tie, the winner(s) shall be selected by lot from among the candidates receiving an equal number of votes

The other two seats shall be filled by election by the current members-at-large of the AdCom from among the names remaining on the slate presented by the nominating committee. This election shall take place at the fall AdCom meeting. Only members-at-large are eligible to cast votes in the election of these three members-at-large.

8. Amendments

These bylaws may be amended by a two-thirds vote of the Professional Communication Society Administrative Committee.

Adopted 18 July 1997
Amended 7 September 1999
Amended 30 September 1999
Amended 24 October 2001
Amended 2 October 2004
Amended 10 July 2005
Amended 6 November 2008
Amended 6 February 2009
Amended 11 September 2010