Statutes of IUHPST proposed by a joint committee of DHST and DLMPST in 2015
approved by the General Assembly of DLMPST in Helsinki on 6 August 2015
This historical note does not form part of the statutes.
The creation of the International Union of History and Philosophy of Science (IUHPS) resulted from the merger in 1956 between the International Union of the History of Science (UIHS), established in October 1947 (constitutive General Assembly, Lausanne), and the International Union of Philosophy of Science (UIPS), established in October 1949 (constitutive General Assembly, Paris). These two organizations became respectively the Division of History of Science (DHS) and the Division of Philosophy of Sciences (DPS). The former subsequently became the Division of History of Science and Technology (DHST; General Assembly, Beijing 2005); the latter subsequently became the Division of Logic, Methodology and Philosophy of Science (DLMPS) and then the Division of Logic, Methodology and Philosophy of Science and Technology (DLMPST; General Assembly, Helsinki 2015). The Statutes of the IUHPS were ratified by the IUHS General Assembly in September 1956 (Florence-Milan), and by the IUPS General Assembly in September 1958 (Brussels). Then, after preparatory work undertaken by the Executive Committees and General Assemblies of the two Divisions, the Board of the IUHPS, during its meeting of 29 September 1961 (London), decided to entrust the drafting of new Statutes to of a Committee composed of Prof. S. C. Kleene (representing DLMPS) and Prof. M. Clagett (representing DHS). This project revised by the Executive Committees of the two Divisions, was approved by the General Assembly of the DLMPS (24-26 August 1962, Helsinki) and the General Assembly of the DHS (August 26-September 2, 1962, Ithaca NY). The new Statutes of the IUHPS were implemented on 1st January 1963.
At its general assembly in Beijing (2005), the DHS was renamed to Division of History of Science and Technology (DHST); the DLMPS added the words “and Technology” to its name at the general assembly in Helsinki (2015). In 2012 and 2013, the councils of the two divisions agreed on a Memorandum on the Cooperation between the divisions. Between 2013 and 2015, a committee consisting of Prof. E. Sober, Prof. P. Schroeder-Heister, Prof. B. Löwe (representing DLMPS) and Prof. E. Nicolaidis, Prof. C. Jami, and Prof. M. Osborne (representing DHST) revised these Statutes according to the guidelines given in the Memorandum.
Objectives of the Union
The objectives of the International Union of History and Philosophy of Science and Technology (IUHPST),
hereinafter designated as “the Union”, are:
- To establish and reinforce links between historians and philosophers of science and between the institutions,
societies, journals etc. devoted to these or related disciplines;
- To collect documents useful for the development of the history of science and technology and for logic,
methodology and philosophy of science;
- To take all measures deemed necessary or useful for the development, spread and organization of studies and
research in the fields of history of science and technology, logic, methodology and philosophy of science
and technology and related disciplines;
- To organize international congresses on the History of Science and Technology and on Logic, Methodology
and Philosophy of Science and Technology, as well as other international events;
- To contribute to maintaining the unity of science in general and to the establishment of links between different
branches of human knowledge;
- To foster contacts and exchanges among historians, philosophers, and scholars concerned with issues related
to the methods and foundations of their respective disciplines.
The Union is affiliated to the International Council for Science (ICSU). It strives to cooperate with the other
unions that are part of ICSU, with a view to reaching the scientific goals and the international understanding
which they all pursue.
Composition of the Union
The Union consists of two divisions: the Division of History of Science and Technology (hereafter DHST) and
the Division of Logic, Methodology and Philosophy of Science and Technology (hereafter DLMPST).
Each of these two divisions has its own statutes. These specify the details of the activities and composition of
these divisions. The statutes of both divisions supplement and form an integral part of the present Statutes of the
The administrative authority of the Union is exercised by:
- The general assemblies of both divisions;
- The councils of both divisions;
- The Board of the Union.
The respective general assemblies and councils of the two divisions are regulated by the respective statutes of
- The Board of the Union consists of the President, the Vice President, the Secretary General, and the Treasurer.
The offices of the Board are filled on a four-year cycle described in Article 7.3 and 7.4, starting on 1 January 2016.
- In addition to the officers of the Board, each of the two divisions can appoint a member of their council as
the official ICSU contact person.
- During the first two calendar years of the cycle (i.e., every year divisible by four and the immediately
following year), the president, secretary general and treasurer of the DHST are President, Secretary General
and Treasurer of the Union, respectively. The president of the DLMPST is Vice President of the Union.
- During the third and fourth calendar years of the cycle (i.e., every even year not divisible by four and the
immediately following year), the president, secretary and treasurer of the DLMPST are President, Secretary
General and Treasurer of the Union, respectively. The president of the DHST is Vice President of the Union.
- The division whose treasurer is the Treasurer of the Union in any given calendar year acts as the treasurer of
the Union with respect to the ICSU fees.
All decisions made by the Board of the Union require the agreement of the majority of its officers, including at
least one from each division. During meetings of the Board each member may cast her or his own vote, even if
she or he chairs, as well as the vote of any absent member who has given her or him a proxy. Absent members’
votes sent in writing (or the electronic equivalent) and concerning proposals received in advance shall be counted.
In this case, the ballot of the absent member on a given proposal excludes the possibility for any member present
to represent the absent member to vote on this proposal. The President of the Union may, with the approval of
the Vice President and the assistance of the secretaries general of the two Divisions, call for a vote, typically in
electronic form, on any question.
- Each of the two divisions shall have its own financial regulations, defined by its own statutes.
- Each division is responsible for the funds entrusted to it and writes financial reports according to their own
- The Union can apply for grants from funding bodies as decided by the Board; if the Union receives grants,
the Board decides in each individual case how these grants are handled financially.
The presidents and secretaries general of the two divisions shall send the Secretary General of the Union all
information on the scientific activity of their respective divisions, to enable her or him to respond at any time
to questionnaires received from UNESCO, ICSU or all other international organizations to which the Union has
- The Union maintains a Joint Commission in order to enhance cooperation between them. The main responsibility
of the Joint Commission is to explore research fields of mutual interest to historians and philosophers
of science and technology and logicians by means of joint conferences and symposia on topics of mutual
- Details about the organization of the Joint Commission are regulated by an agreement between the divisions.
- The Joint Commission organizes a session at the international congresses of each of the two divisions on a
topic of interest for the other division.
- Each division invites a delegate of the other division to their physical council or executive committee meetings.
The costs of the trip are covered by the division sending the delegate.
- Each division sends a representative to the congress organized by the other division. The representative
attends the council meetings and meetings of the general assembly of the other division and delivers words of
greeting from the sister division either in the opening session or during the meeting of the general assembly.
The hosting division will cover the registration fee and the accommodation expenses of this representative.
These Statutes may be amended only by general assemblies convened by each division, provided that the total
number of votes cast in favour of the proposed amendment in each division is at least equal to two-thirds the
number of votes cast in that division.
Proposals made by a member, scientific section, or commission of one of the divisions to amend the Statutes
must be received in writing by the Secretary General of the Union at least five months before the date of the first
general assembly during which they are to be examined. The secretaries general of both divisions shall inform all
members, scientific sections, and commissions of their division of any proposal they have received in accordance
with the statutes of that division.
The councils of both divisions can jointly decide to implement rules of procedure of the Union in accordance
with the present Statutes.
Under these Statutes, the Union shall continue to operate without any limitation of time. The duration of the
Union is unlimited, unless dissolved according to the provisions laid down in the present article. The dissolution
of the Union can be approved by a joint General Assembly of both divisions called for that purpose. The reso-
lution of dissolution is valid only if it is approved by at least three-quarters of the votes in each of the divisions.
In case of dissolution, the assets of the Union shall be passed on to an international organization with activities
similar to those of the Union.
In the event that a member, scientific section, or commission of one of the divisions ceases its affiliation with the
division, it retains no right on the assets of the Union.