The IGS Chapters are the premier vehicle through which the IGS interacts with the geosynthetics industry, helping it reach out to and influence the larger engineering field. Chapter activities include the organization of major conferences and exhibits, such as the 10th International Conference on Geosynthetics (September 2014, Germany) and its predecessors in Brazil, Japan, France, and the USA. The chapters also coordinate and schedule presentations of focused seminars at universities, government offices, and private companies.
Chapters create the opportunity for the IGS membership to reach out, teach, and communicate; and they are the catalyst for many advances in geosynthetics. Participation in an IGS Chapter brings manufacturers, engineers, researchers, professors, contractors, and designers together in an environment which directly advances the industry by informing and influencing people who are not familiar with our discipline.
The essential steps necessary to form a chapter of the IGS are:
- The chapter shall represent a single country or a well-defined geographical region.
- A minimum of 20 participants who are currently members or are willing to become members of the IGS. A chapter may also form with 15 individuals and one IGS corporate member or 10 individuals and two IGS corporate members. Non-voting students or invited members are not to be included in the tally.
- A set of chapter bylaws must be compiled consistent with the bylaws of the IGS. An example set of bylaws are included in the Chapter Formation Guidance Packet.
Download Chapter Formation Guidance Packet (PDF)
- Minutes from the organizational meeting must be forwarded to the IGS Secretariat for submission to the IGS council. A President, Vice President, Treasurer, and Secretary must be elected by the members. The chapter must provide and adhere to a clear election schedule.
Once the requirements outlined above are met, the bylaws of the chapter must be approved by the IGS Council. Once the bylaws are approved, and all other criteria are met, the chapter becomes an official chapter of the IGS. IGS Council meetings are typically held once a year so all documentation should be provided at least 30 days prior to the years scheduled council meeting.
A major objective of the IGS is to develop and advance the geosynthetics industry and to promote the appropriate use of geosynthetics worldwide. The formation of active chapters promotes industry growth as chapters interact with commerce, academia, and all components of the industry during their chapter activities. In support of chapter activities and to foster industry growth, the IGS provides financial incentives to each chapter along with contributing educational materials and tools to those chapter members who teach geosynthetics.
Financial support for the chapters comes in the form of membership dues, which are US $45 per year. Active chapters that help administer the IGS programs to their membership keep US $15 per member to help offset expenses. For example, the IGS requires a minimum of 20 members to form a chapter and these 20 members generate a minimum of US $300 per year for the chapter. A chapter, at their own discretion, may choose to charge more than the US $45 for their chapter dues.
The IGS also provides a financial incentive to the chapters for each corporate member based in the home country of the chapter. The credits for corporate members are deducted from the dues owed by the chapter to the IGS. This reduction in dues allows use of the funds for chapter activities and events. It is expected that the activities will benefit both the chapter and the corporate members. In addition, the chapter may receive a larger reduction in dues for each new corporate member in the first year after the company joins the IGS. Please note that these programs apply only to IGS corporate members and do not apply to companies that belong to or support the chapter directly.
The following summarizes the potential financial benefits to chapters and chapter members of the IGS.
- USD $15 per member dues reduction, resulting in a minimum of USD $300 for the use of the chapter
- Financial incentive for each IGS Corporate Member (established by the Council – currently US $50 per year for each continuous year of membership)
- Financial incentive for each new IGS Corporate Member (established by the Council – currently US $250 dues reduction in the year following initial membership)
- Receive the full benefits of IGS membership plus any additional benefits provided by the chapter (see Membership)
- Students are non-voting members of the IGS and do not pay dues. No dues are payable to the IGS for student members. A chapter may choose to charge students a minimal amount for membership but students do have the right to join the IGS directly with no dues payment. A student may choose to pay dues and become a voting member.
It is to the economic advantage of the membership to form and grow national chapters. For details and information on the process of chapter formation, please contact IGS President Russell Jones. Additional helpful contacts are IGS Immediate Past President, Jorge Zornberg, or Current IGS Vice President, Chungsik Yoo. For specific information and guidance on chapter formation and bylaws please contact the IGS Secretariat: IGSsec@GeosyntheticsSociety.org.