Note: In the Constitution, the following meanings apply to key verbs.

All words and terms shall have the generally accepted contextual meaning as defined in the Oxford English Dictionary.

“Shall” or “will” or “must” indicates obligatory actions while “may” or “should” or “can” indicates optional actions.  In all ISVA matters, if controversy arises on the meaning, interpretation or definition of any part of the constitution or regulations, the ruling of the current Executive Committee shall be final.





The name of the organisation is the International Sheep Veterinary Association (ISVA).



The ISVA is constituted for the following purposes:

  1. To promote and defend the interests of all veterinarians with a special interest in the sheep farming industry.
  2. To promote and improve the sheep farming industry internationally with special emphasis on its veterinary aspects.
  3. To act as the official voice of the veterinary profession internationally on all matters involving sheep.
  4. To act as the international source of expertise in all aspects of veterinary importance in sheep.
  5. To promote international harmonisation of veterinary terminology and standards used in sheep and the industry.
  6. To arrange and facilitate meetings and other scientific exchanges between members and individuals.
  7. To facilitate recognition of individuals or organisations that make a significant contribution to the veterinary aspects of sheep farming.
  8. To form relations and collaborate with other organisations with similar or related interests.



1. National membership

Membership is open to national veterinary associations of countries recognised by the United Nations, provided that such associations are private organisations funded mainly by the private subscriptions of its members. Individual members are represented by their association. National members are encouraged to form special sheep interest groups within the national association.

2. Private membership

Where no national association exists, or in special circumstances as decided by the current Executive Committee of ISVA, individuals may join as private members but shall have no voting rights.

3. Associate membership

Organisations other than national veterinary associations may be granted associate membership at General or Special Meetings of ISVA but shall have no voting right

4. Corporate membership

Major international sponsors may be granted corporate membership for a specified period at a General or Special Meeting of ISVA but shall have no voting rights.

5. Obligations

Membership of ISVA will entail no obligation from member countries, their organisation or individuals to take part in any ISVA activities if they choose not to do so.

Members of ISVA chosing not to take part in any ISVA activities shall not prevent others from doing so.



The ISVA is organised mainly on an electronic basis, with General Meetings held to coincide with the International Congresses of ISVA.

1. General Meetings

The secretariat shall notify all members of a General Meeting to be held at a place and time convenient to and organised by the current host organising country, but it must coincide with the international congress and be accessible to all members.

The General Meeting may be attended by one authorised representative of each national member country. Other members may attend and observers may take part at the discretion of the Chairman and Executive committee, but can not vote. The agenda shall be circulated to members at least 30 days before the meeting.

The General Meeting may transact all business relevant to ISVA and will act as its supreme body with the power of final decision. Any proposed changes to the Constitution of ISVA must reach the secretariat at least 3 months before the General Meeting and be supported in writing by at least 5 members of ISVA. Such proposals must be circulated to all members of ISVA at least 1 calendar month before the General Meeting.

2. Special Meetings

These may be held by telephone conference or electronic mail as appropriate and as deemed necessary by either the Executive Committee of ISVA, or by request of at least 5 member countries. These meetings shall cover only such matters that need urgent attention and cannot wait for the next General Meeting.

3. Office Bearers

The Association shall at the General Meeting elect the following officials who will serve in these capacities until the next General Meeting, unless they resign, die or are removed from office in the interim by a resolution at a Special Meeting. In this event the current Executive Committee is empowered to elect a replacement to complete the current term of the incumbent, subject to proposals and votes at a Special Meeting. Each nomination for an official position should have the written support of the national organisation and may include a short Curriculum Vitae of the nominee of not more than one page. Officers will serve only one term in any position.

President: The duties of the President will be to see to the effective running of the ISVA and ensure that the Constitution is followed. The incumbent will act as chairman at all meetings and as the official representative of ISVA as required.

Vice President: This person would normally be expected to succeed the President at the next General Meeting but may not necessarily do so. The incumbent is expected to assist the president in all ISVA matters as requested. The Vice President will act as chairman of ISVA meetings or ISVA representative if the President is unable to do so.

Secretary/Treasurer: The incumbent shall arrange all meetings and other activities as directed by the President, and keep adequate records of all matters pertaining to the ISVA. Any financial matters shall also be the responsibility of the Secretary.

Congress Organiser: The person nominated by the organising country of the following congress shall be responsible for organising the congress, assisted by a national committee, and will report to the Executive Committee.

Two Executive Committee Members: These members shall be responsible for seeing to the adequate functioning of all other committees as may be formed by the Executive Committee.

4. Other Committees: The Executive may either on its own initiative or arising from proposals coming from members, form such committees as may be required for the effective functioning of ISVA. Such committees may be of the size and organisation appropriate to their functions, but will not have independent powers and must report to the Executive Committee for authorisation and approval of any proposals. Subject to this limitation, these committees may co-opt additional members as required and consult directly with member countries or other organisations but all final decisions rest with the Executive Committee.

5. Voting Powers

At a General or Special Meeting, all member national organisations with a duly authorised representative will have one (1) vote. In addition, all member countries that have held an international congress will have an additional one (1) vote. All member countries with special interest groups which pertain to sheep shall be entitled to a further one (1) vote.

In the event of a voting tie at any meeting, the current chairman will have a casting vote. Private members, Associate members and Corporate members shall not be entitled to vote.

All agenda matters subject to a vote shall be decided on the basis of a simple majority (50% or more of votes) but changes to the constitution require a two thirds majority (67% or more of votes).

Proxy voting is allowed provided that authorisation for this is delivered in writing to the chairman before the meeting starts.

Conditional on the correct notification, agenda and voting procedures being followed, the authorised national representatives present at a meeting shall constitute a quorum.

Any matters requiring urgent decision which in the opinion of the President cannot await a Special or General Meeting, shall be decided by the Executive Committee subject to ratification of a General Meeting or Special Meeting or ISVA.

6. Languages

The official language of ISVA will be English.  The country organising the International Congress is permitted to arrange simultaneous translations with other languages if required. Groups of member countries may arrange meetings or discussions in other appropriate languages but should provide concise yet complete translations into English for the benefit of the International Community.



All costs occasioned by ISVA matters shall be borne either by national members or individuals serving on any committee or other body of the ISVA. There shall be no fees payable for membership. The costs of all congress meetings and the congress shall be borne by the host country organisers. A levy of US$10/paying participant at each congress shall accrue to ISVA to defray expenses and assist with its objectives. A report on finances, audited by a person appointed at a General Meeting, shall be presented at the next General Meeting.



Regulations required for the orderly functioning of ISVA will be drawn up by its Committees. These regulations shall be ratified at a General Meeting or Special Meeting.  The functioning of all committees will be subject to regulations. This applies specifically but not only to Congress Organisation. All regulations and changes shall be dated and approved by the current President.