COPE Governance

Constitution

COPE is registered as a charitable company limited by guarantee in the UK and was set up by a Memorandum of Association on 3 October 2007 (updated 18 March 2011, 22 March 2013, 17 April and 9 September 2015).  It is also a registered charity (number 1123023). COPE’s principal Objects are "to educate and advance knowledge in methods of safeguarding the integrity of the scholarly record for the benefit of the public".  COPE’s income is derived exclusively from subscriptions from its members – journal editors, publishers and others affiliated with publishing.  COPE submits an annual report and financial statement to the Charities Commission and to Companies House.

COPE was established to provide a range of services and products aimed primarily, but not exclusively, at editors and publishers of academic journals and designed to provide advice and guidance on best practice for dealing with ethical issues in journal publishing. 

You can read more about COPE's history here.

Memorandum and Articles of Association of the Committee on Publication Ethics

The Regulations are currently in the process of being updated and will be posted here when complete.

Trustee Board

COPE is governed by the Trustee Board (maximum of 12), who are ultimately responsible for the financial, legal and business operations of COPE as a charitable business and gives authority to the Executive Officer and the COPE team to manage the day to day affairs of the organization. 

It meets at least four times a year and is led by the Chair. 

The Trustee Board consists of the Officers, namely: Chair; Vice-chair (Chair-elect); Secretary; Treasurer; Immediate Past Chair (non-voting); members of Council, and those who are co-opted. The Officers and the Trustee Board are elected by the full Council at its Annual General Meeting (AGM).  Members of the Trustee Board are Trustees under charity legislation and Directors of the limited company under company law. 

The biographies and conflict of interest declarations of all the Trustees are posted on the COPE website. Potential or actual conflicts of interests are required to be declared on a yearly basis. In addition, potential or actual conflicts of interests are required to be declared at the beginning of each Trustee Board and Council meeting. These declarations are minuted and the member must recuse themselves from discussions on any items where they have a competing interest.  Trustees work voluntarily, without any remuneration except for travel, accommodation and other necessary expenses incurred in undertaking COPE business, according to COPE’s expenses policy.

Read more about the Trustees.

Officers

 

 

 

 

 

The current Chair is Dr Virginia Barbour, whose second two year term began in September 2015. The Chair presides at meetings of the Council and is Chair of the Trustees.

The Chair is supported by three other Officer position: co-Vice-chairs Chris Graf and Geraldine Pearson (who are joint Chairs-elect); Secretary Charon Pierson; and Treasurer Deborah Poff.  

Officers serve a term of two years with the possibility of being re-elected for one further term of two years.  

Council

The Council are nominated and elected by the full COPE membership. Elections for vacancies on Council are held annually if positions are available. (Trustees, excepting co-opted Trustees are also members of Council.)

The Council are responsible for the operational activities of COPE and are Constitutional Members of COPE under company law.  The Council meets three times a year.

The biographies and conflict of interest declarations of all the Council members are posted on the COPE website. Potential or actual conflicts of interests are required to be declared on a yearly basis. In addition, potential or actual conflicts of interests are required to be declared at the beginning of each Trustee Board and Council meeting. These declarations are minuted and the member must recuse themselves from discussions on any items where they have a competing interest. Council members work voluntarily, without any remuneration except for travel, accommodation and other expenses incurred in undertaking COPE business, according to COPE’s expenses policy.

Read more about the Council.

Subcommittees

The Council are divided into a series of subcommittees who have been authorized by the Trustee Board to undertake COPE activities. 

These are:

Complaints – Chair, Deborah Poff

Education – Chair, Tara Hoke

Finance - Chair, Christopher Leonard (Treasurer)

Membership – Chair, Zoë Mullen

Nominations – Chair, Geri Pearson (co-Vice-chair)

Outreach & Events – Chair, Mirjam Curno

Research – Chair, Adrian Ziderman

Strategy - Chair, Virginia Barbour.