Constitution and Founding Declaration

Chapter 1 General Rules Article 1 (Name of Organization) The organization (“this organization” hereafter) shall be named the Silk-Road Universities Network (acronym: SUN, pronunciation: [sʌn])

Article 2 (Goals and Principles) This organization shall conduct its affairs in accordance with the following goals and principles.
  • 1. This organization aims at restoring ‘Silkroadia’, the Silk Road spirit – a symbol of the bridge between the East and West by banding together universities located on the land and sea routes of the Silk Road and contributing to world peace and the creative development of civilization by training future leaders devoted to this spirit.
  • 2. In the course of pursuing the purpose defined in Article 2.1, this organization and all member universities shall act in accordance with the following principles, which are based on the spirit of ‘Silkroadia’.
    • A) Individual differences should be treated as a matter of infinite respect, interest, consideration for others and celebration, and not as that of discrimination, hostility, suppression or exploitation. We place the coexistence of humanity based on harmonious diversity, fair transactions and communication before the interests of individuals and organizations.
    • B) We do not pursue any particular political ideology, religious belief or financial profit.
    • C) Operation of this organization shall be conducted in accordance with the sovereign equality principles of all members of this organization.
    • D) Every member of this organization shall perform its duties faithfully to ensure the rights and benefits of all member universities.
Article 3 (Functions) This organization shall perform the following duties to realize its purpose as defined in Article 2.
  • 1. Cooperation and academic exchange to expand education and research pertaining to the Silk Road.
  • 2. Exchange and cooperation across the fields of culture, art and sports.
  • 3. Promotion and establishment of a network for university students to undertake volunteer activities across the globe.
  • 4. Provision of a basic common system that guarantees cooperation and performance among members of this organization.
Article 4 (Location of Headquarter and Secretariat) The headquarter of this organization shall be located in Gyeongju, Republic of Korea. The office of the secretariat of this organization shall be located in Seoul, the capital of the Republic of Korea.

Article 5 (Legal Status and Registration) To promote public confidence and ensure smooth operation of the organization it will be established as a foundation at the provincial government office of Gyeongsangbuk-do, as long as the headquarter and secretariat remain located in the Republic of Korea. Chapter 2. Membership Article 6 (Types of Membership) This organization shall have three types of members: institutional members, individual members and supporting members.
  • 1. Institutional members shall identify with the purpose of this organization, respect all relevant principles and obligations, and shall be affiliated with universities, research institutes, public institutions, private institutions or international organizations that carry out the respective duties of their institutions faithfully. The head of the group, or a deputy named by the head, shall represent the views of each member and when the head of an institution is changed, the predecessor loses power of representation and the new head or provisional head succeeds this power of representation.
  • 2. Institutional members shall identify with the purpose of this organization, respect all relevant principles and obligations, and shall be affiliated with universities, research institutes, public institutions, private institutions or international organizations that carry out the respective duties of their institutions faithfully. The head of the group, or a deputy named by the head, shall represent the views of each member and when the head of an institution is changed, the predecessor loses power of representation and the new head or provisional head succeeds this power of representation.
  • 3. Supporting members shall not participate in policy decisions and elections for the organization but shall support the activities of the organization from a financial and/or administrative standpoint, as individuals or groups named by the head of their respective organizations to represent their views.
Article 7 (Membership Criteria) Institutional and individual members shall qualify for membership when fulfilling the following criteria.
  • 1.Institutional members dispatched as representatives to the Inaugural Assembly of SUN shall qualify for membership upon payment of dues and acceptance of membership form at the time of founding the organization. Institutional members who join after establishment of the organization shall receive confirmation by the board through the Secretary General, with recommendations by two (2) current institutional members, and shall qualify for membership upon payment of dues and acceptance of membership form.
  • 2.Individual members who attend the Inaugural Assembly of SUN shall qualify for membership upon payment of dues and acceptance of membership form at the time of founding the organization. Individual members who join after establishment of the organization shall receive confirmation by the board through the general officer, with recommendations by two (2) current individual members or an institutional member, and shall qualify for membership upon payment of dues and acceptance of entrance documents.
Article 8 (Permissions) Member universities are responsible to acquire necessary (if any) permission from their governments to become part of the SUN.

Article 9 (Rights and Duties of Members) All members possess the following rights and duties.
  • 1.Members have the right to participate in any and all activities related to SUN; provided, that they comply with all relevant conditions and procedures deemed necessary.
  • 2. Institutional members have the right to designate up to two (2) employees and two (2) student members of their organization, for a term up to three (3) years, without incurring additional membership dues.
  • 3. Members are entitled to certain privileges, in comparison to non-members, when participating in events and projects hosted by this organization; provided, that they comply with all relevant conditions and procedures deemed necessary.
  • 4. Members are entitled to certain privileges, in comparison to non-members, when accessing information and resources produced by SUN; provided, that they comply with all relevant conditions and procedures deemed necessary.
  • 5. Members are required to conform to decisions agreed upon by the organization.
  • 6. Members are required to faithfully pay the dues agreed upon by the organization and its affiliated bodies.
Article 10 (Dues) Members shall pay either organizational dues or individual dues on an annual basis. The procedures for payment shall be provided for in separate regulations.
  • 1. Members shall pay dues on an annual basis.
  • 2. The dues for organization members will be US$ 3,000 per annum.
  • 3. The dues for individual members will be US$ 120 per annum; but in the case of full-time students this fee will be set as US$ 30 per annum; provided, that the Secretary General will have the option to waive this fee in cases he/she deems necessary considering the financial situation.
  • 4. In cases where more than six (6) months remain in the fiscal year, annual membership fees should be fully paid. If less than six (6) months remain in the fiscal year, annual membership fees should be fully paid and the validity period is extended to include the next year.
Article 11 (Disqualification of Members) In the event that a member commits any of the following acts, they can be disqualified pending a request by the Board of Directors and resolution at the General Assembly. Once a member is disqualified, they forfeit the right to claim return of dues paid or any other property-based claim.
  • 1. When a member has defamed the character of the organization.
  • 2. When a member neglects their duty to pay dues.
  • 3. When a member fails to comply with or perform matters agreed upon by the Board of Directors or the General Assembly.
Chapter 3 Executives Article 12 (Types and Number of Executives) The organization can appoint the following executives.
  • 1. Up to two (2) Chairpersons of the General Assembly. One Chairperson must be the president, rector, or chancellor (or vice-chancellor) of a member university; and the other Chairperson can be the head of other types of member organizations, i.e., a government organ, NGO or international organization. Two (2) member organizations headed by the two (2) elected Chairpersons will be referred to as the chairing university if it is a university or chairing organization otherwise. The two Chairpersons should work under mutual cooperation. General Assembly may appoint an Honorary Chairperson(s) who has made a significant contribution to the development of SUN. The Honorary Chairperson is not counted as a member of the executives of SUN.
  • 2. One (1) Chairperson of the Board of Directors. This office shall be concurrently served by the Chairperson of the General Assembly who is a university president.
  • 3. Up to twenty(20) directors can be appointed. The organizations headed by an appointed director will be referred to as a directive university or directive organization.
  • 4. One (1) Secretary General.
  • 5. One (1) Treasurer.
  • 6. Two (2) Auditors.
Article 13 (Roles and Duties of the Chairpersons and Honorary Chairpersons of General Assembly) The Chairperson(s) of the General Assembly shall have two roles: presiding over the General Assembly and representing its views. The two Chairpersons should decide among themselves who will take the presiding role before the assembly begins. The Chairperson of the General Assembly, specifically the head of chairing university, will also serve concurrently as the board president. The two Chairpersons shall: ① possess executive powers over the budget plan of the chairing university and the chairing organization, and ② ensure that the following are included in the regular budgets of the chairing university and the chairing organization.
  • A) all necessary operational budgets for the Board of Directors,
  • B) all necessary operational budgets for the secretariat of this organization, and
  • C) budgets for projects to be implemented by the secretariat.
The duties of the Honorary Chairperson(s) include, but are not limited to, extending administrative and financial assistance to the operation and related projects of SUN as well as an advisory role.

Article 14 (Duties of Board President) The Board President shall represent and execute all decisions agreed upon by the General Assembly, as delegated by the General Assembly and with the aim of ensuring the Board of Directors duly bears all legal responsibility for these actions, and will preside over board meetings and represent the views of the Board of Directors.

Article 15 (Duties of Board Members) The member of the Board of Directors shall assist in all legal actions performed by the board president, as assigned by the board president.

Article 16 (Duties of the Secretary General) The Secretary General shall support the smooth operation of the General Assembly and coordinate and oversee all operations of the secretariat to ensure efficient execution of projects and matters decided upon by the General Assembly and Board of Directors.

Article 17 (Duties of the Treasurer) The Treasurer shall legally represent all financial revenue and expenditures of the organization, and record and preserve related documents.

Article 18 (Duties of the Auditor) The Auditors shall conduct the following duties.
  • 1. Auditing of financial status, revenue and expenditure of the organization.
  • 2. Auditing of legal and ethical aspects of secretariat operations.
  • 3. Reporting of audit results provided for in paragraphs 1 and 2 to the Board of Directors and General Assembly.
  • 4. Calling of a General Assembly or gathering of Board of Directors in the event that an audit in accordance with paragraphs 1 or 2 discovers an illegal or inappropriate issue which requires urgent remedy
Article 19 (Appointment of Executives)
  • 1. Executives in Article 12 shall be elected from among members, at the General Assembly.
  • 2. Executives shall be appointed at the General Assembly upon receiving approval from a majority of all members present. When there are three (3) or more candidates for a position, the candidate who wins the most approval shall be appointed; provided, that the first-serving executives shall be appointed upon recommendation by the organizing committee and approval by a majority of participants at the General Assembly.
  • 3. The Honorary Chairperson(s) shall be appointed on recommendation by the Secretary General or at least ten (10) members of the General Assembly and by receiving approval from a majority of all members participating in the vote.
Article 20 (Executives’ Term of Service) All executives provided for in Article 10 shall serve for a term of three (3) years and may be reelected one (1) time to serve an additional term; provided, that Auditors shall serve an initial term of five (5) years and may not be reelected. Chapter 4 General Assembly Article 21 (Status of the General Assembly) The General Assembly acts as the highest decision-making body for this organization.

Article 22 (Constituents of the General Assembly and Declaration of Intention) The General Assembly shall consist of the heads of member organizations and affiliated organs, including the director of the IASS, representatives of the USSUN, and the Secretary General. Board members may also each appoint an alternate member to serve in their stead under unavoidable circumstances.

Article 23 (Types of General Assembly) A General Assembly will either be the annual general meeting held on a regular basis, or extraordinary general meetings held as circumstances demand.

Article 24 (Time of Annual General Meeting) Annual general meetings shall be held during the second week of August each year.

Article 25 (Extraordinary General Meeting) An extraordinary general meeting shall be held under either of the following circumstances.
  • 1. If the Board of Directors make a request
  • 2. If over one-third of the members submit a written request that specifies the reason for a general meeting
Article 26 (Resolutions by the General Assembly) The General Assembly shall resolve the following issues.
  • 1. Amendments to the Articles of Association.
  • 2. Evaluation of operation plans and budget issues.
  • 3. Approval of organization members and confirmation of affiliated organ heads following establishment of the organization.
  • 4. Definition of the rights, duties of members, and election and disaffiliation of members.
  • 5. Resolution on items proposed by the Board of Directors and/or secretariat.
  • 6. Issues related to annual dues assigned to member organizations and directive organizations.
  • 7. Dissolution of the organization.
  • 8. Other significant issues related to the operation of the organization.
Article 27 (Call for Meeting) President shall call for a General Assembly on the second week of August every year, through the Secretary General, and notice of meetings including date and venue shall be given to all members at least 60 days prior to commencement of the meeting. In lieu of in-person meetings, the use of teleconferencing, internet, and other communications equipment may be allowed for an official meeting of the board under urgent circumstances.

Article 28 (Quorum and Resolution) The General Assembly shall be deemed valid when a majority of all members (including delegated participants) are present, and resolution shall be decided through a majority vote of attendance.

Article 29 (Operation of the General Assembly, Establishment of Secretariat and Board of Directors) The General Assembly is presided over by a Chairperson elected at the General Assembly, and a secretariat and Board of Directors can be established and operated to allow smooth operations and efficient enforcement of resolved items.

Article 30 (Cyber General Assembly) The General Assembly shall, in principle, reach resolutions through face-to-face meetings, but electronic communications can be allowed in circumstances where this is unavoidable. Chapter 5 Board of Directors Article 31 (Purpose of Establishing Board of Directors) The Board of Directors is established for the efficient control and management of the activities of all member organizations.

Article 32 (Composition of Board) The Board of Directors shall be composed of up to 30 non-permanent directors, including the Board President.

Article 33 (Qualifications) All directors must be heads of a member organization, or a delegate duly appointed by the head of a member organization, and should be able to provide steady administrative and financial support toward the operation of this organization. However, individual members can also be appointed as director when deemed necessary.

Article 34 (Ex Officio Directors) A person falling under either of the following positions shall become an ex officio director.
  • 1. The Chairperson of the General Assembly (when there are two co-Chairpersons, the one that is also the president of a university).
  • 2. The Secretary General.
  • 3. When a co-Chairperson is also the head of a government organization, a public official designated by the head of this organization.
  • 4. Director of IASS.
  • 5. Representative of USSUN.
Article 35 (Deliberation and Resolutions by the Board)The Board of Directors shall deliberate on and resolve the following issues.
  • 1. Foundation, modification, and dissolution of affiliated organs.
  • 2. Approval for operation plans of affiliated organs.
  • 3. Preparation of budget closing statementss.
  • 4. Issues regarding member dues.
  • 5. Ratification of new members.
  • 6. Agendas to be submitted to the General Assembly.
Article 36 (Quorum) A meeting of the Board of Directors cannot be held when less than a majority of all Directors are present, and resolution shall be decided through a majority vote of attendance.

Article 37 (Cyber Board Meeting) The Board of Directors shall, in principle, reach resolutions through face-to-face meetings, but electronic communications can be allowed in circumstances where this is unavoidable.

Article 38 (Regulations for Operating the Board of Directors) Any further details concerning the organization and operations of the Board of Directors shall be decided by the General Assembly and provided for in separate rules of operation for the Board of Directors.

Chapter 6 Secretariat Article 39 (Purpose) The secretariat aims to support the operations of the General Assembly and to execute the decisions of the General Assembly and Board of Directors in an efficient manner.

Article 40 (Composition) The secretariat is composed of one (1) Secretary General elected by the General Assembly and a supporting office, and an executive committee.

Article 41 (Duties of the Secretariat) The Secretariat shall perform each of the following duties.
  • 1. Preparation and support for the General Assembly and Board of Directors.
  • 2. Planning and support of public relations related to all organization operations.
  • 3. Execution of all the matters decided by the General Assembly and Board of Directors .
  • 4. Supervision of all affiliated organs, personnel management, finances, information, and networks of the organization.
  • 5. All other matters delegated by the General Assembly and Board of Directors.
Article 42 (Secretary General) As head of the Secretariat, the Secretary General has executive power over all relevant administrative affairs, including but not limited to organizational, personnel and financial matters, and assumes responsibility toward the General Assembly and Board of Directors.

Article 43 (Compensation and Regulations for Operating the Secretariat) The Secretary General and his/her supporting office are entitled to an amount in wages, and members of the executive committee can be paid an allowance for their services. All other specific matters related to this supporting office, type of committee, organizational composition and capacities, compensation for the Secretary General, personnel of his/her supporting office and the executive committee shall follow the provisions of separate rules of operation for the Secretariat decided by the Board of Directors.

Article 44 (Executive Committee) To allow the planning and execution of professional-level operations, an executive committee composed of relevant experts can be established under the direct supervision of the Secretary General. The type, composition and operation protocol of this committee shall be decided in accordance with separate rules of operation for the Secretariat decided by the Board of Directors.

Chapter 7 Election Article 45 (Principles)
  • 1. All executives shall be elected through a vote.
  • 2. All votes will observe the principles of election to ensure a general, direct, free, equal and secret vote. If there is another principle that more than two third of the election participants agree on, election could also be conducted based on it.
  • 3.Barring any additional provisions, all decisions through a vote require a quorum of one half of all registered members and are resolved through the agreement of a majority of those present.
Article 46 (Election Commission) Elections are supervised by an election commission chaired by the head of the organ in question; Provided, however, that when the vote is to approve a consecutive term for the head of an organ another person must be elected to chair the election commission. However, in the case of the inaugural assembly at which first-serving members will be elected, the chair of the initial election commission shall preside over the proceedings. The chair of the initial election commission must be recommended by the chairman of the preparation committee for inaugural General Assembly and receive over one half of the votes cast by all registered participants of the inaugural General Assembly. The chair of the election commission can appoint up to five (5) officers to the election commission.

Article 47 (Recommendation of Candidates) All election candidates for executive positions must receive a recommendation from at least three (3) members. Chapter 8 Finances and Accounting Article 48 (Financial Sources) Finances for the organization include membership dues, earnings from operations, donations or grants, and other sources of revenue.

Article 49 (Fiscal year) A fiscal year for the organization commences on January 1 and concludes on December 31 of each year; Provided, that the first fiscal year of the organization begins on the organization’s establishment date and ends on December 31 of the same year.

Article 50 (Execution, Receipt and Disbursement of Finances) The Secretary General possesses executive power over the budget and business plans, while the Treasurer oversees administration of receipt and disbursement of finances. Expense limits are set in accordance with separate rules of operation decided by the Board of Directors.

Article 51 (Allocation and Settlement of Budget) The Secretary General shall establish the organization’s operational plan and revenue-expenditure budget three (3) months prior to commencement of the next fiscal year, receive approval from the Board of Directors and submit this proposal to the General Assembly; provided, that for the first fiscal year that commences on the organization’s establishment date, the Secretary General shall allocate and execute the budget through consultation with the Board President and receive approval from the next term’s Board of Directors.

Article 52 (Settlement and Auditing) The Secretary General shall prepare a settlement report that includes an annual business report and business statement of income and expense report within two (2) months, following the end of the fiscal year and submit this to the Auditor. The Auditor shall perform an audit on the report for a period of no longer than one (1) month and present the results of the same to the Secretary General within (15) days. The Secretary General then shall submit and seek approval for this report from the Board of Directors within two (2) months, while the Auditor shall present the results of the report to an annual General Assembly to allow a decision of approval.

Article 53 (Storage of Documents and Account Books) All documents and accounting-related books approved by the General Assembly must be stored at the Secretariat for a period of five (5) years.

Article 54 (Compensation for Directors) The board president can propose a compensation plan for the Board of Directors to the General Assembly for approval. Chapter 9 Affiliated Organs Article 55 (Affiliated Organs) This organization shall establish the following affiliated organs, the composition and operation of which shall follow separately established regulations approved by the Board of Directors.
  • A) The United Presidents of SUN (UPSUN: The United Presidents of Silk-road Universities Network)
  • B) The United Students of SUN (USSUN: The United Students of Silk-road Universities Network)
  • C) The International Association for Silk-road Studies (IASS)
Article 56 (Composition and Role of the United Presidents of SUN) Presidents of the member universities of this organization compose the United Presidents of SUN, whose members shall institutionalize cooperative programs between the member universities and be tasked with administrative and financial support.

Article 57 (Composition and Role of the United Students of SUN) Students of the member universities of this organization, and all other students who identify with the purpose and principles of the organization, compose the United Students of SUN, whose members shall design and carry forward international events and businesses through their cooperation.

Article 58 (Composition and Role of the International Association of Silk-road Studies) Professors and researchers affiliated to the member universities, and expert researchers in Silk Road studies who identify with the purpose of this organization, compose the network, whose members shall conduct independent or joint researches in Silk Road studies and establish Silk Road studies as an independent field of academic study.

Article 59 (International Consultative Group) An international consultative group shall be established under the direct supervision of the Secretary General, and shall provide counsel on the operations of the organization in accordance with the following provisions.
  • 1. The International Consultative Group shall be composed of up to 20 members appointed by the Secretary General as personnel possessing a wealth of learning and experience which can contribute to the efforts of the organization.
  • 2. Members appointed to the International Consultative Group shall serve for a term of two (2) years, with consecutive terms allowed.
  • 3. Consultative allowance may be paid to members of the International Consultative Group.
  • 4. Consultation allowance and matters regarding the operation of the consultative group shall be decided in accordance with separate rules of operation decided by the Board of Directors.
Article 60 (Amendment to the Articles of Association) Any amendment to the Articles of Association must be decided through consent by two-thirds of all registered members of the Board of Directors and a majority of all attending members at the General Assembly.

Article 61 (Written Delegation and Resolution) When a member of the Board of Directors and/or the General Assembly cannot attend a board meeting or General Assembly due to unforeseeable circumstances, the member can assign a delegate by identifying him/her in writing to represent the intentions of the said member. In cases of emergency, the board can move to reach a resolution in writing.

Article 62 (Dissolution of the Organization) Dissolution of the organization can be decided through the consent of two-thirds of registered members of both, the Board of Directors and the General Assembly, and this dissolution must be reported to the relevant authorities.

Article 63 (Disposition of Residual Property Following Dissolution) For the disposal of residual property following dissolution of the organization, the General Assembly shall appoint members to a settlement committee pending the approval of the majority of members present at a General Assembly, and procedures for the disposition shall be conducted by the members of this committee in accordance with relevant laws and provisions. Supplementary Provisions Article 1 (Power of the Articles of Association) The Articles of Association gain effect through the consent of a majority of attending members at the General Assembly, and shall be enforced starting from the date of the inaugural General Assembly.

Article 2 (Application Mutatis Mutandis of Practices) The general practices of operations at international organizations shall apply mutatis mutandis to all matters regarding the operation of the organization which are not provided for in the Articles of Association.

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