IRSE Council are investigating the process of petitioning for a Royal Charter, normally reserved for bodies that work in the public interest. These organisations include professional institutions and charities who can demonstrate pre-eminence, stability and permanence in their particuar field, along with satisfying certain criteria. Once of these criteria is that the petitioner shall exist not soley to advance the interests of its members but also, and primarily, to advance the public interest.
As part of these investigations, Council are keen to hear views of all IRSE Corporate members via a short online feedback survey which will be sent to all Hon Fellows, Fellows, Members and Associate Members during week commencing 15 January.
The survey will remain open until 5 February 2024 and all anonymised responses will be presented to Council at their February meeting when they will decide whether to take the next step towards gaining Chartered status.
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Charters are reserved for bodies which work in the public interest and are able to demonstrate pre-eminence, stability and permanence in their particular field. With the increase in our global engagement, Council has decided the time is right for us to seek formal recognition of our professional membership and mark our status as a unique major player in global railway control. This is essential for our growth globally and places us in a significantly stronger position with government and other stakeholders across the world. It will also reinforce the IRSE charity’s aim of advancing the science and practice of train control and communications engineering within the industry and maintaining the high standards of knowledge and competence within the profession.
Achieving chartered status symbolises honour, tradition and the enduring legacy of an institution. It confers independent legal personality on an organisation signifying excellence, expertise and professionalism and will further recognise and endorse the talent and expertise of our membership.
Chartered status is understood and recognised worldwide and will position us at the right level in our future dealings with global governments, other professional organisations and academia.
Adding the word Chartered and the initial ‘C’ to our name is optional. Most other PEIs with a Royal Charter have not changed their name ( IMechE, IET) , whilst some ( Chartered Institution of Rail Operators) have. However, there is already an organisation known as CIRSE: Cardiovascular and Interventional Radiological Society of Europe.
If the IRSE is successful then members will be consulted on this aspect.
No, but Council believes the effort in applying is worth the potential end result.
We do not know, but if Members give approval for us to petition, we hope to make substantial progress within the next few months.
If, taking the results of this survey into consideration, IRSE Council decide to take the next step to gaining a Royal Charter, all voting members (AMIRSE, MIRSE, FIRSE and HonFIRSE) with an active IRSE membership will have the opportunity to vote for or against petitioning for a Royal Charter at the 2024 AGM (online voting will be available).
Under the rules defined in IRSE's Memorandum and Articles of Association, only Corporate members (Hon FIRSE, FIRSE, MIRSE and AMIRSE) are eligible to vote at Annual General Meetings, where, if Council decide to proceed to the next stage, this will be voted on.