Our constitution

Last amended September 2016


1. Aims

The Linguistic Ethnography Forum (LEF) is a Special Interest Group within the British Association for Applied Linguistics (BAAL), and it aims:

  • to bring together researchers conducting linguistic ethnography (LE) here and abroad
  • to explore a range of past and current work, to identify key issues, and to engage in methodologically and theoretically well-tuned debate

2. Activity

LEF holds at least two academic meetings every year, including one event at the BAAL Annual Meeting (SIG track or colloquium). Although one theme may be foregrounded, each meeting seeks to include some variation in its focus, and issues arising can be developed at a subsequent event. LEF maintains a web-site, an email discussion list, and a Twitter account.

3. Membership

LEF welcomes all researchers with an interest in linguistic ethnography, and will consider all those on its mailing list as LEF members. Members’ email addresses will be passed on to BAAL once per year, under the BAAL regulations for Special Interest Groups. LEF will encourage its members to consider BAAL membership. BAAL membership gives LEF members the right to vote. LEF membership is free of charge, but fees may apply to attend academic meetings.

4. Organisation

LEF is co-ordinated by a Coordinating Committee (CC) that consists of: a Convenor, a Treasurer, a Communications Secretary, a Meetings Coordinator, a Membership Coordinator and up to two Ordinary Members. These are elected for a (renewable) period of two years at LEF’s annual general meeting (AGM), which is normally held at an autumn event. The CC may also co-opt a third Ordinary Member, who may remain as a co-opted committee member for one year.

5. Responsibilities in the Coordinating Committee

The CC is responsible for facilitating and overseeing the activities of LEF (facilitating and publicising LEF events; liaising with the local organisers of seminars; maintaining financial accounts; servicing business meetings etc). LEF is a SIG within BAAL: its activity must be broadly congruent with the BAAL Constitution, and regardful of BAAL Guidelines on the organisation of SIGs as in the SIG Handbook.

The CC must submit:

a) an Annual Report to the BAAL Secretary and the BAAL SIG Coordinator by August 15th every year

b) a full, accurate and auditable financial statement to the BAAL Treasurer by June 30th every year.

The CC should also ensure that all LEF activities are regularly publicised through the BAAL Newsletter, the BAAL Website and baalmail.

6. Election of the Coordinating Committee

The CC consists of the Convenor, Treasurer, Communications Secretary, Meetings Coordinator, Membership Coordinator and up to two ordinary members, and these are elected by LEF’s Annual General Meeting for a period of two years. Elections are held each year for alternate combinations of posts – Convenor + Treasurer + Membership Coordinator + ordinary member in one year, Communications Secretary + Meetings Coordinator + ordinary member in the second year.

CC members are eligible for re-election but the continuous tenure of any Officer shall normally be limited to three terms of office. After the third term of office, in the event that there are no other candidates for the position, the Officer may remain in post if they are willing and have the ongoing support of a majority of the existing Committee members, this support to be verified by a vote at the AGM. Thereafter, elections will be held for that post on an annual basis. If, at that point, another candidate(s) comes forward for election to that position, the incumbent may not stand.

  • The quorum for an AGM election is eight
  • Voting at General Meetings shall be by secret ballot. In the event of an equality of votes the Convenor may give a second or casting vote; the Convenor’s decision on the result of any vote shall be final.
  • If any Office falls vacant between Annual General Meetings, the remaining Officers can invite another LEF member to take up the vacant post for the period until the next General Meeting.
  • The Convenor and Treasurer, at least, should be members of BAAL.

7. Dissolution

In the event of the LEF SIG ceasing to operate, any funds held will be paid back to BAAL, unless the BAAL membership agrees at the BAAL AGM that it is unnecessary to do so.

8. Amending the LEF Constitution

This constitution may be amended by majority vote at any quorate Annual General Meeting, provided that written notice of the proposed amendments are given to the Convenor in good time and then relayed to the membership at least fourteen days before the Meeting.