The revised version of the APAARI Constitution was approved in June 2019 by the APAARI Executive Committee as per the directive and guidance of the Fifteenth General Assembly Meeting held in December 2018 in Taipei, Taiwan. Developed on the basis of a comprehensive review, this Seventh Edition makes substantial improvements and amendments to the previous versions, providing clarity, consistency and transparency for APAARI to respond to current and emerging challenges of agriculture and agri-food systems in the Asia-Pacific Region. 

These challenges include climate change, depleting resources, hunger and malnourishment, and complex production, supply and value chains.  Also included in this Edition are the necessary provisions to help enhance APAARI’s management and governance to better address agricultural research and innovation, thereby contribute to the realization of the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) in the region.

The Seventh Edition was published by APAARI under the Food and Agricultural Organization of the United Nations (FAO), with ISBN: 978-616-7101-18-7. Each section of the Constitution can be accessed on the links below. The full document is available here:  APAARI Constitution July 2019 (81 downloads)  

The Contents of the Constitution

Preamble

The Asia-Pacific Association of Agricultural Research Institutions (APAARI) was established in 1990. The First Edition of APAARI’s Constitution was published in December 1991. Since then the Constitution has progressed through five editions1, mainly with minor amendments; the latest version being the Sixth Edition of March 2017. Developed on the basis of a comprehensive review, this Seventh Edition of the Constitution makes substantial improvements and amendments that provide clarity, consistency and transparency for APAARI to respond to current and emerging challenges of agriculture and agri-food systems (AFS)2 in the Asia-Pacific Region (APR).

These challenges include climate change, depleting resources, hunger and malnourishment, and complex production, supply and value chains. Also included in this Edition are the necessary provisions to help enhance APAARI’s management and governance so as to respond effectively towards the renewed focus on agricultural research and innovation and thereby contribute to the realization of the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) in the region. This Edition has 17 Articles and 50 Paragraphs, and 1 Annexure, covering various topics as indexed in the Contents page.

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First Edition of December 1991, Second Edition of September 1994, Third Edition of February 2003, Fourth Edition of January 2009, and Fifth Edition of January 2015.

2In the context of this Constitution, agri-food systems cover farming of crops and livestock, fish, pastoralism and forestry/agro-forestry, their production systems, and their associated post-harvest food value chains and service industries, with a particular focus on the needs of resource-poor smallholder producers.

Article I: Interpretation

In this Constitution, unless the context otherwise specifies, the following abbreviations, acronyms, expressions and terms are used: “AFRIS” means agri-food research and innovation systems as specified in footnote 3 referred to under Paragraph 2 of Article II;

“AFS” means agri-food systems as specified in footnote 2 referred to in Preamble to this Constitution;

“AIRCA” is the Association of International Research and Development Centers for Agriculture;

“APAARI” means the Asia-Pacific Association of Agricultural Research Institutions as named under Paragraph 1 of Article II;

“APR” is the Asia-Pacific Region;

“Association” means the Asia-Pacific Association of Agricultural Research Institutions as recognized under Paragraph 1 of Article II;

“CGIAR” is the Consultative Group on International Agricultural Research;

“Chairperson” means the Chairperson of the Executive Committee as nominated/elected under Paragraph 27 of Article X;

“CSO” is Civil Society Organization;

“Executive Committee (EC)” means the Executive Committee of APAARI composed under Paragraph 25 and established under Paragraph 26 of Article X;

“Executive Secretary (ES)” means the Executive Secretary of APAARI as appointed under Article XII;

“FO” is Farmers’ Organization;

“General Assembly (GA)” means the General Assembly of APAARI established under Paragraph 19 of Article VIII; “GFAR” is the Global Forum on Agricultural Research and Innovation; “Head Office” means the Head Office of APAARI as mentioned in Paragraph 5 of Article III;

“Host Country” means the Host Country of APAARI as named under Paragraph 5 of Article III;

“IARC” is International Agricultural Research Center;

“Member” means a representative of a member organization of APAARI on the Executive Committee as composed under Paragraph 25 of Article X;

“Member Organization” means the member organization of the APAARI General Assembly as termed under Paragraph 12 of Article VI;

“NARC” is National Agricultural Research Council;

“NARI” is National Agricultural Research Institution;

“NARO’ is National Agricultural Research Organization;

“NGO” is Non-Government Organization;

“Vice-Chairperson” means the Vice-Chairperson of the Executive Committee nominated/elected under Paragraph 27 of Article X;

“Secretariat” means the Secretariat of APAARI as established under Paragraph 6 of Article III; and

“This Constitution” includes Annexure 1 as specified under Paragraph 13 of Article VI and rules of procedure and regulations as formulated under Article XIV.

Article II: Name and Character

1. The name of this Association shall be “Asia-Pacific Association of Agricultural Research Institutions”, hereinafter referred to as “APAARI” or “the Association”.

2. APAARI is an Asia-Pacific regional membership-based, non-profit, apolitical, multi-stakeholder organization. It shall function with an overall objective to promote and strengthen agriculture and agri-food research and innovation systems (AFRIS)³ through collaborations, partnerships and networking, capacity development and advocacy for sustainable agricultural development in the Asia-Pacific Region.

3. APAARI shall have a logo designed and approved by the General Assembly. The General Assembly may change the logo through amendment/resolution as provided under Article XVI.

4. APAARI shall be appropriately recognized as a regional organization for 
strengthening agri-food research and innovation systems in the Asia-Pacific Region

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³ In the context of APAARI, agri-food research and innovation systems are comprised of interconnected and interdependent components, such as NARIs, NAROs, NARCs, IARCs, CGIAR
centers, AIRCA member institutions, advanced research institutes, agricultural universities, higher education institutions, extension, CSOs, NGOs, FOs, the private sector, development
organizations (national, regional, global and intergovernmental), women, youth, farmers and rural communities, including those involved in agri-food production systems and their associated post-harvest food value chains and service industries.

Article III: Office and Secretariat

5. APAARI shall have its Head Office in Bangkok, Thailand (Host Country of APAARI). 

6. The Association shall have a Secretariat to perform its technical, managerial and administrative functions. The Secretariat shall be located at APAARI’s Head Office.

7. The Asia-Pacific Region shall have three sub-regions for effective operations and governance of APAARI. These sub-regions shall be: i) South Asia and West Asia, ii) Southeast Asia and East Asia, and iii) the Pacific.

8. The General Assembly may establish sub-regional offices in any of its member countries on an as-needed basis to carry out any of the functions of APAARI, for a period determined by the General Assembly.

9. The specific objectives of APAARI shall be:

i. Strengthen agri-food research and innovation systems for more effective knowledge management and information exchange in order to make agriculture and agri-food systems more knowledge-intensive in the APR;

ii. Develop and strengthen strategic partnerships, cross-linkages and networking for technical and scientific cooperation among a) agri-food research and innovation systems in the region, and b) national, sub-regional, regional and global multi-sector research and development organizations/agencies;

iii. Assist in the assessment and prioritization of agricultural research and development needs in individual countries, sub-regions, and the APR;

iv. Contribute to the development of institutional arrangements, organizational capacities; including but not limited to technical, scientific and managerial competencies of AFRIS for effective planning, management and delivery of research and innovations;

v. Contribute to the improved understanding and awareness of the role and importance of, and investment in AFRIS for improving AFS and socioeconomic development in the APR;

vi. Assist in facilitating appropriate and fair representation of women and youth in AFRIS and their participation in policy and decision making in agri-food systems; and

vii. Manage, develop, and govern APAARI with a high level of transparency and accountability in order to achieve sustained strengthening of AFRIS in the APR

Article IV: Objectives

9. The specific objectives of APAARI shall be:

i. Strengthen agri-food research and innovation systems for more effective knowledge management and information exchange in order to make agriculture and agri-food systems more knowledge-intensive in the APR;

ii. Develop and strengthen strategic partnerships, cross-linkages and networking for technical and scientific cooperation among a) agri-food research and innovation systems in the region, and b) national, sub-regional, regional and global multi-sector research and development organizations/agencies;

iii. Assist in the assessment and prioritization of agricultural research and development needs in individual countries, sub-regions, and the APR;

iv. Contribute to the development of institutional arrangements, organizational capacities; including but not limited to technical, scientific and managerial competencies of AFRIS for effective planning, management and delivery of research and innovations;

v. Contribute to the improved understanding and awareness of the role and importance of, and investment in AFRIS for improving AFS and socioeconomic development in the APR;

vi. Assist in facilitating appropriate and fair representation of women and youth in AFRIS and their participation in policy and decision making in agri-food systems; and

vii. Manage, develop, and govern APAARI with a high level of transparency and accountability in order to achieve sustained strengthening of AFRIS in the APR.

Article V: Functions

10. The functions of APAARI shall be:

i. Convene General Assembly of APAARI and establish and operate Executive Committee to deliberate and decide on APAARI management, governance, work programme, progress, finances, policies, strategies and other related matters;

ii. Develop, implement, monitor and report on vision, strategy, operational plans and collective activities of APAARI;

iii. Initiate, collaborate and/or coordinate technical and scientific projects/
programmes, and necessary research and innovation activities among APAARI members, AFRIS and their partner organizations, at national, sub-regional, regional and global levels;

iv. Organize, co-host and/or sponsor scientific, technical, policy-related 
conferences, workshops, dialogues, meetings, seminars, webinars, online discussions and such other events in pursuit of the Association’s objectives;

v. Organize, participate and support institutional, organizational and human 
resource capacity development activities, including training programmes, staff exchange, mentoring, attachments, secondment and any other as necessary;

vi. Develop, manage and implement knowledge management/ exchange and 
necessary tools, processes and information and communication technologies (ICTs), including websites, databases, social media tools, technical and scientific publications, standards and any other as necessary;

vii. Mobilize, generate, and manage necessary financial, human and partnership 
resources for effective management and governance of APAARI; and

viii. Provide priority support in small-island and mountainous countries of the APR 
for developing competencies, capacities and resources to agri-food research and innovation systems.

Article VI: Membership

11. Membership of APAARI shall be open to organizations/institutions engaged in, responsible for, and promoting agricultural research and innovation in the Asia-Pacific Region.

12. Membership of APAARI may be sought by submitting an application to the Executive Secretary and as approved by the Executive Committee. Once approved such organization shall be termed as Member Organization.

13. The Member Organizations shall be classified in the following four main categories; 

i) Country Core Member Organizations,
ii) Associate Member Organizations, 
iii) Affiliate Member Organizations, and
iv) Reciprocal Member Organizations. Details 
of these categories/sub-categories and annual membership subscriptions shall be as specified in Schedule 1 and Schedule 2 of Annexure 1 – APAARI Membership Categories and Subscriptions.

14. The contents of Annexure 1 are evolving, progressive and adaptable in nature. 
These contents may be modified and/or updated and approved, from time to time, by the Executive Committee. Such updated version of Annexure 1 shall be provided along with this Constitution.

15. Annual membership subscription shall fall due in January every year.


16. On failure of a member organization to pay its membership subscription 
consecutively for three years, the APAARI Executive Committee may decide to discontinue such membership.

17. Any member organization, desiring to withdraw its membership from the 
Association, shall notify the Executive Secretary in writing. Such withdrawal shall take effect three months from the date of receipt of the notice by the Executive Secretary

Article VII: Funds

18. APAARI shall seek and receive funds from various sources to carry out its functions. Such sources may comprise of:

i. Membership subscriptions received from APAARI member organizations;

ii. Grants and donations from governments, national, regional or international organizations, donor/aid organizations/agencies, philanthropic bodies, development banks, and the private sector;

iii. Contributions from partners/collaborators and sponsors in APAARI organized 
meetings, events, networks, and projects;

iv. Proceeds from the sale of publications issued, goods tendered, consultancy 
services provided by APAARI;

v. Fees collected from participants of technical meetings, training programmes, 
etc. organized and/or managed by APAARI;

vi. Interest incomes and returns from reserve funds/deposits and royalties from 
intellectual properties; and

vii. Other suitable sources as approved from time to time by the Executive 
Committee.

Article VIII: General Assembly

19. There shall be a General Assembly of APAARI, wherein each member organization shall be represented by one delegate.

20. The General Assembly shall meet at least once every two years. The meeting of the General Assembly shall be presided over by the Chairperson of the Executive Committee, as assisted by the Vice-Chairperson of the Executive Committee.

21. Each member organization under Membership Category I (Country Core Member 
Organizations) and Category II (Associate Member Organizations) shall have one vote at the General Assembly meetings. Member organizations under Category III (Affiliate Member Organizations) and Category IV (Reciprocal Member Organizations) shall not have voting right at the General Assembly meetings.


22. The Chairperson shall allow adequate time for mutual consultation among members 
prior to voting on any issue/matter. In the case of equality of votes, the Chairperson 
shall have a casting vote.

23. All decisions shall be taken by a simple majority vote (more than 50% of votes in 
favour), except for those relating to amendment of the Constitution, and dissolution of 
the Association, wherein the decision shall take place as under Article XVI and Article XVII.

Article IX: Duties of the General Assembly

24. To fulfill the objectives of APAARI, the General Assembly shall perform the following roles and responsibilities:

i. Consider and endorse biennial work plan, income expenditure plan, strategic plan, audited financial statements, progress and performance reports, human resource development report as presented by the Executive Committee;

ii. Consider and approve policies, directives, rules of procedures, and regulations 
made in accordance with this Constitution;

iii. Nominate/elect the Executive Committee, appoint any specific purpose 
committee(s), appoint any member of the Assembly to serve on such specific purpose committee, delegate any required authority to the Executive Committee, and exercise other powers/duties as conferred upon the General Assembly under this Constitution;

iv. Consider and approve recommendations of the Executive Committee for effective functioning and governance of APAARI; and

v. As and when needed, consider and approve amendments to the Constitution for enhancing the performance and effectiveness of APAARI.

Article X: Executive Committee

25. The Association shall have an Executive Committee, composed of the following fourteen (14) members:

i. Six (6) members representing the Category I (Country Core Member Organizations) of which two (2) shall be from the South Asia and West Asia sub-region, two (2) from the South-East Asia and East Asia sub-region, and two (2) from the Pacific sub-region. One of these six members shall be the out-going Chairperson, who will continue as a member for the new term, to ensure continuity and needed guidance to the new Executive Committee;

ii. A member representing the member organization from the host country of 
APAARI;

iii. A member representing the higher education sector (agricultural universities 
and institutions);

iv. A member representing the CGIAR – as represented by one of the CGIAR 
Center Directors General;

v. A member representing the AIRCA – as represented by one of the AIRCA 
member institutions;

vi. A member representing the private sector organizations;


vii. A member representing donor/funding agencies/organizations;


viii. A member who is the incumbent Executive Secretary of the GFAR; and


ix. The incumbent Executive Secretary of APAARI as an ex-officio member.


26. The members shall be nominated/elected by the General Assembly in its biennial 
meeting from the respective groups of member organizations. A member organization shall not have more than one representative on the Executive Committee.

27. The Chairperson and Vice-Chairperson of the Executive Committee shall be nominated/elected from the seven Executive Committee members [as under Paragraph


25 (i) and (ii)], by the Country Core Member Organizations present at the General 
Assembly Meeting.

28. In case any of the member seat(s) on the Executive Committee remains vacant 
during the General Assembly meeting, such member seat(s) shall be nominated/filled-in  by the Executive Committee.

29. The Executive Secretary of APAARI shall be appointed in accordance with Article XII 
of this Constitution.

30. The Executive Committee may co-opt/ invite, as a special member/an observer on 
the Executive Committee, any such individual with specific expertise, skills, interest and experience.

31. The Chairperson, Vice-Chairperson and members of the Executive Committee 
(other than the member representing member organization of the host country, the Executive Secretary of GFAR and the APAARI Executive Secretary), shall hold office for two years and shall not be eligible for immediate re-election to the same office.

32. If any member seat, including that of the Chairperson or the Vice-Chairperson, of 
the Executive Committee, falls vacant, such seat shall be filled-in for remaining tenure by the Executive Committee in consultation with the member organization to which the original member belonged.

Article XI: Duties of the Executive Committee

33. The Executive Committee shall meet at least twice every year and such meetings shall be convened by the Executive Secretary in consultation with the Chairperson.

34. The Executive Committee shall oversee the affairs of APAARI in accordance with 
this Constitution, and policies and directives adopted/given by the General Assembly. The specific duties of the Executive Committee shall be to:

i. Review and approve biennial work plan, income and expenditure plan, 
audited financial statements, projects and collective actions of APAARI;

ii. Plan and develop policies, strategies, directives, rules of procedures, and 
regulations for approval by the General Assembly;

iii. Suggest and approve the necessary standards of management to enhance 
functioning, performance and governance of APAARI;

iv. Propose to the General Assembly the composition of the Executive Committee, delegation of required authority to the Executive Committee, and suggest any other powers/duties of the General Assembly as conferred upon under this Constitution;

v. Form and appoint sub-committee(s) of the Executive Committee to deal with specific purpose(s);

vi. Appoint APAARI Executive Secretary and periodically assess and review his/
her performance; and

vii. Design, endorse and propose amendments to the Constitution for approval by 
the General Assembly, as and when needed.

35. The Executive Committee members shall participate in any specific purpose 
committee(s), as formed from time to time, by the Executive Committee and/or by the General Assembly.

36. The Executive Committee members, as and when required, shall represent APAARI 
at internal and external meetings, forums and events in fulfilling the objectives of APAARI.

Article XII: Executive Secretary

37. APAARI shall have an Executive Secretary as Chief Executive Officer of APAARI. The APAARI Secretariat shall be headed by the Executive Secretary.

38. The Executive Committee shall appoint the Executive Secretary for a tenure of three (3) years. The person appointed should have suitable qualifications, experience and acknowledged leadership in agricultural research, innovation and development. He/she will be supported by an optimal number of technical and administrative staff in the Secretariat.

39. The performance of the Executive Secretary shall be periodically assessed and reviewed by the Executive Committee and if found satisfactory and acceptable; the appointment of the Executive Secretary may be renewed once for a further term of three (3) years.

Article XIII: Duties of Officers

40. The Chairperson shall preside over all meetings of the General Assembly and the Executive Committee; and represent, as and when required, the Association at internal and external meetings, forums, and events in fulfilling the objectives of APAARI.

41. The Vice-Chairperson shall perform all duties of the Chairperson in the absence of the Chairperson, and such other duties as may be assigned to him/her by the Chairperson.

42. The Executive Secretary shall be the chief of the Secretariat of APAARI and shall 
be responsible for the affairs of the Association. Under the general guidance of the Executive Committee and the General Assembly, the Executive Secretary shall perform the following duties:

i. Plan and organize the General Assembly and Executive Committee meetings, prepare the proceedings, arrange their publication and distribution, follow up on decisions taken and matters arising, and maintain records of the reports and proceedings of all meetings of the Association;

ii. Prepare the Association’s work plan and budget, monitor the progress of activities, propose new projects/programmes in collaboration with national, regional and international organizations, and ensure coordination of activities among the member organizations of APAARI;

iii. Mobilize and manage the financial resources of APAARI, in particular (but not limited to), collect annual membership subscriptions and receive any other financial contributions, make payments/utilize funds in accordance with approved income expenditure plan/budget, maintain full accounts, and submit audited financial statements for endorsement to the Executive Committee/General Assembly during their respective meetings;

iv. Oversee overall delivery on a) APAARI programmes/projects, b) design of policies, strategies and biennial operational plans, c) partnership meetings/conferences/dialogues/training events/activities, d) human resource development and management, and e) public relationship; 

v. Publish APAARI Newsletter, event proceedings and technical and policy reports;

vi. Line manage all the staff of APAARI, conduct their annual performance appraisal, and ensure new recruitments or replacements as and when desired/ approved by the Executive Committee; and

vii. Undertake any additional duties as entrusted by the Executive Committee in pursuit of the APAARI’s objectives.

Article XIV: Rules and Regulations

43. General rules of procedure, financial management procedures, and regulations shall be prepared, modified and proposed by the Executive Committee and approved by the General Assembly.

44. Modifications to the rules, procedures, and regulations shall be adopted by a simple 
majority (more than 50%) of the votes at any meeting of the General Assembly.

Article XV: Quorum

45. The quorum shall be fifty per cent (50%) of the member organizations with voting rights at any General Assembly meeting and fifty per cent (50%) of the members at any Executive Committee meeting.

Article XVI: Amendment of the Constitution

46. Amendment of the Constitution shall be considered only at a meeting of the General Assembly.

47. No proposal for the amendment of the Constitution shall be included in the agenda of any General Assembly meeting unless notice thereof has been dispatched by the Executive Secretary to members at least 60 days before the opening of the meeting.

48. Amendment of the Constitution shall only be considered by the General Assembly if such agenda and the content of the amendment are supported by and have a prior endorsement of the Executive Committee by a simple majority of (more than 50%) of the votes.

49. The Association may amend this Constitution by a two-third majority (66% or more) of the votes cast, provided that such majority is more than half (more than 50%) of the countries from which the country core membership of APAARI is drawn.

Article XVII: Dissolution

50. The Association can only be dissolved by a resolution approved at a General Assembly meeting. The procedure to be followed for the dissolution of the Association shall be the same as detailed in paragraphs 46 to 49 of Article XVI.

Annexure 1: APAARI Membership Categories and Subscriptions

Schedule 1.     Categories and Sub-Categories of APAARI Membership

Schedule 2. APAARI Membership Subscription per Member Organization