An Act
to lay the foundation of the
Oxford Neurological Society

Schedule 1 – The Society

Art. 1 The Oxford Neurological Society (“Society”) is established to promote the knowledge of neurological sciences among the general public, and to be a community of likeminded people of all kind, to whom the good of the Patient is of a paramount importance. The Society believes that the neuroscience should serve the people, and not to be a terra incognita of sciences; it shall strive to devise the treatment for all neurological pathologies, apply due remedies, through better understanding and a more compassionate approach towards the Patients.

Art. 2 The society’s motto shall be:

Victoria scientia crescit

Art. 3 The society’s coat of arms shall be:

The brain situated on an open book, with caduceus and crown therein, encircled by the belt with The Neurological Society and two bay leaves on both sides of the crest, and the motto Victoria scientia crescit situated on the lower belt.

Art. 4 The society’s oath shall be:

By taking the honour of the [position within the Society], I solemnly swear to obey the Act of Foundation of the Society, and The Scientific Method, and that I shall defend the values of the Society and I shall be always questioning and investigating the sciences, for the good of Humanity. I shall respect the Patient’s autonomy and shall be pursuing their recovery at all times. And that the Good and Honour of the Society, and the Wellness of the Mankind shall always be for me the Highest Rule.

(it may be accompanied by the phrase …So help me God)

Art. 5 The society has been founded upon values, that the founders deem cardinal and of a universal importance. It is thus agreed that no changes shall ever be made to the Act of Foundation (“The Act”).

Art. 6 The articles and schedules of The Act shall be directly applicable to all cases within the society, and no law can be superseding the Act at any time. Anything within the society, which is against the articles and schedules of the Act, shall be unlawful, and no enforcements can be made in respect thereof.

Art. 7 The Members should always entertain the opportunity to be challenged, and to question the current state of mind; they should support and respect other Members regardless of their scientific titles, experience, knowledge, and position within the Society.

Art. 8 All reasoning shall always be based on the matter of fact, logic, and evidence, and not on the basis of the authorship, recognition, or position within the Society.

Schedule 2 – The membership

Art. 1 There are the following types of membership (being a “Member”):

i) “Candidate of Sciences”

ii) “Fellow”

Art. 2 The rules of The Act specify the rights, the mode of election and obligations of the respective memberships.

Art. 3 Any person can become a Candidate of Sciences at any point. The Society shall publish the full list of the modes of enrolment. However, the following must be available:

i) by sending a letter to the Society’s Headquarters;

[ii) by registering on the Society’s website (Internet)] – addendum 2015;

Art. 4 There are the following obligations of the Candidate of Sciences:

i) to obey the rules of the Society;

ii) to promote and live according to the values of the Society;

iii) to proudly represent the Society to the Public;

iv) to endeavour to develop their knowledge of the neurosciences, be an authority to the Public, use carefully selected sources of knowledge, apply the Scientific Method and critical appraisal, and to be directed by the evidence-based approach;

v) to be patient and respectful to the Public when explaining the neurosciences;

vi) to demonstrate the highest level of honour and virtue;

vii) to be compassionate towards the Patients and the Public, be supportive, be eloquent and comprehensive in answers, strive to update the Patient and members of the team about the developments in their treatment, and to maintain the clearest and prompt communication within the team;

viii) to respect the patient’s autonomy, and to strive to save and prolong the lives of the patients, using all resources that are available to them;

Art. 5 There are the following rights of the Candidate of Sciences:

i) to use their title and the resources of the Society;

ii) to take part in shaping the Society and its agenda;

iii) to post queries to the Advisory Boards of the Society;

iv) to give evidence to the Advisory Boards of the Society, and to take part in the Initiatives of the Society;

v) to represent the Society to the public;

vi) to file in a complaint with the Council of Praetors;

Art. 6 Candidates of Science may be graduated to become a Fellow. The rules of graduation are as follows:

i) the Candidate of Science must inform the Convocation House of their intent to sit the exam; they may do so at any point, except during the Conference;

ii) the Candidate of Science must pass the exam prepared by the Convocation House; the exam must be equal for all Candidates of Science in a given year (between one Conference and a subsequent one), and the pass mark is 70%;

iii) the Candidate of Science who passed the exam, must then sit the oral examination in front of the Convocation House;

iv) the oral examination shall consist of one word exam, whereby the Candidate of Science shall be given one word, previously chosen by the Convocation House, on which they shall elaborate in one hour;

v) the elaboration must be associated with the neurosciences, and the questions may be asked by the members of the Convocation House;

vi) the members of the Convocation House can at any point graduate the Candidate of Science; each Member of the Convocation House may do so only once a year (Conference to Conference);

vii) the Candidate of Science may be invited to sit the oral examination for up to four subsequent days, if the Candidate of Science does not receive graduation after that period, their examination is deemed failed;

viii) the Candidate of Science can attempt as many examinations as they like;

ix) all members of the Convocation House must be informed about the examination but their attendance is voluntary;

Art. 7 There are the following obligations of the Fellow:

i) all obligations of the Candidate of Science;

ii) to be a guide and a mentor of the Candidates of Science and other Fellows;

iii) to be vastly contributing to the knowledge of sciences, and the Society’s business;

iv) to be obeying the rules and obligations set out for them by the Society;

Art. 8 There are the following rights of the Fellow:

i) to file in a complaint to the Council of Praetors;

ii) to establish and be presiding of an Initiative;

iii) to apply for the position of the President and the Secretary General;

iv) to issue the vote of approval in the election of the President;

v) to be appointed as Secretary of the Advisory Board;

vi) to be appointed a Praetor and issue votes of approval for a Praetor;

vii) to be consulted by other Fellows and Candidates of Sciences;

viii) to represent the Society in court (upon appointment);

ix) to represent the Society in trial at Council of Praetors (upon appointment);

x) to use their due title and honours, traditionally, by adding an abbreviation of Fellow of (Oxford) Neurological Society, FNS, unless suspended or disbarred by the law;

Art. 9 The Secretary General shall be handling the day-to-day duties of the Society. Any Member may be appointed the Secretary General.

Schedule 3 – The President

Art. 1 The President is the highest office of executive in the Society. They are elected to serve five years, and can serve unlimited number of tenures.

Art. 2 There are the following obligations of the President:

i) to set out the yearly agenda of the Society;

ii) to oversee the Society and be of the highest example of virtues;

iii) to support other Members of the Society;

iv) to deliver the Inauguratory Speech during the First Day of the Conference;

v) to be a direct supervisor to all of the executives in the Society, taking responsibility of their actions;

vi) to be diligent of the new laws and to issue them only when necessary, for it is the understanding and stability of the law that the Society values. Corruptissima re publica plurimae leges;

Art. 3 There are the following rights of the President:

i) to issue Statements and Standing Orders, to which, unless otherwise sanctioned by the Council of Praetors, shall all Members submit;

ii) to appoint and dismiss any member from their position, when the member is not a Praetor or Member of the Convocation House;

iii) to be consulted on any major issue affecting the law of the Society;

iv) to be serving their full tenure;

v) to be immune from prosecution or subpoena;

vi) to repeal any law proposed to be constituted, unless the law by orders, writs or cases of the Council of Praetors;

vii) to present a Member with a pardon, which shall effectively invalidate the conviction by the Council of Praetors;

Art. 4 The President is elected during the week preceding the Conference. Any Fellow can put themselves forward as a candidate for the office of The President, by informing the Convocation House in writing. The vote is as follows:

i) all candidates and their curriculum vitae documents are presented to the Society;

ii) the Prefect reads out the name of the first candidate on the list (in an alphabetical order);

iii) all Fellows who think that the candidate is suitable for the office shall raise their hands to be counted; it must be noted that the question merely asks whether or not the Fellow deems the candidate suitable, and not whether the candidate should succeed; votes of approval can be issued for none, one, or more candidates; for the vote to count, a Fellow must also present themselves in person, and must wear a suitable attire, with a carrot cake eaten at least to one bite and a coffee drink therewith;

iv) the Prefect then reads out the subsequent names on the list until all candidates are read out;

v) the Secretary General counts the votes of approval for each candidate, and the candidate with the most votes of approval is nominated to the office;

vi) in the event of two or more candidates receiving the same amount of votes of approval, the other candidates are disregarded, and the points ii.-v. are repeated, until the nominee is chosen;

vii) if after three subsequent elections (vi.), the nominee cannot be determined, then all Fellows vote in favour of one candidate of their choice. The candidate with most votes is nominated;

viii) from the point of nomination, the President-elect carries no extra power, until they are officially sworn in during the Conference;

ix) the election must be concluded before the Conference; any protests against the fairness election may be made to the Council before the Conference, all complaints should be given due consideration and no claim shall be deemed unsubstantiated until it is decided by the Council;

x) if only one person puts themselves forward, they shall receive the nomination;

xi) if no one puts themselves forward, then the Prefect shall elect the President on the Conference;

Art. 5 The President must be sworn in during the Conference using the oath of the Society.

Art. 6 The President shall carry immunity against the proceedings of the Council of Praetors.

Art. 7 The President shall appoint and dismiss the Secretary General at their discretion.

Art. 8 Upon finishing their tenure, The President shall join the Convocation House for the life’s tenure; they cannot be member of the Convocation House and President at the same time. They may, however, take part in the interview and vote on the fellowship graduations.

Schedule 4 – The Council of Praetors (“The Council”)

Art. 1 The role of the Council is to oversee the execution and enforcement of the law within the Society, and to be an impartial adjudicator in the complaints and disputes within the Society. The council may issue a warrant of execution to order a remedy or enforcement of a judgement, and the warrant of suspension of the months leading to the Conference, as an enforcement of the judgement of conviction.

Art. 2 The following procedure shall apply in the event of the breach of the law or dispute within the society:

1. Any member of the society may raise a complaint about any issue, with complaints from the Fellows being a priority. The complaint shall be assigned an adjudicator from the Council. They will judge on the merit and conduct hearings. After due consideration (and within 21 days) the following may be undertaken:

  • complaint is dismissed;
  • warning is issued;
  • fine is issued (up to maximum of one tenth of the average salary of the country);
  • complaint is taken to the Council for due trial;

2. The trial may be initiated by any member of the Council. The judge of the trial shall be elected by a nominee of the claimant and a nominee of the defendant. The judge must be a member of the Council. If the agreement cannot be reached, the judge is chosen at random.

i) the trial must be speedy (initiated within 21 days unless the defendant moves for adjournment), fair, impartial and equal for both sides;

ii) the jury of the trial shall be chosen at random from the Fellows; the defendant may, however, choose to be tried on the bench, in the process where the judge shall be the only decision maker and whereby jury is not appointed; this decision cannot be reversed;

iii) the jury shall consist of 12 Fellows, and they must reach a unanimous verdict of guilty or not guilty, if they cannot reach the verdict, they shall sit in the chamber for 12 hours, after which the judgement of not guilty is entered;

iv) any person is innocent until proven guilty;

v) cases of the Council can serve as precedents for other trials;

vi) if there is a doubt over the interpretation of the law, the verdict is entered in the favour of the defendant; in dubio pro tributario

vii) the law does not work backwards; Lex retro non agit

viii) no one can be expected to testify on the basis that they may incriminate themselves; Nemo tenetur se ipsum accusare

ix) the newer law shall supersede the older law; Lex posterior derogat priori

x) the more particular law shall supersede the general law; Lex specialis derogat legi generali

xi) the rules and process of the trial shall be determined by the Council, but all new changes shall carry a vacatio legis of one year, all Praetors must agree on the change.

xii) no one shall be issued an indictment on the same issue more than once; multiple complaints or indictments must be joint in one case;

Art. 3 The Praetors of the Council shall serve tenures of six years, being appointed as follows:

i) two Praetors are nominated by the Prefect

ii) two Praetors are nominated by the President

iii) six Praetors are nominated by the vote of approval by the Fellows (with procedure as in nominating the President)

iv) two Praetors are nominated by the vote of approval by the Convocation House (with procedure as in nominating the President)

Art. 4 No Praetor can be dismissed during their tenure, unless by the council of Praetor Emeritus in a majority of at least 4/5, with at least 1/2 quorum.

Art. 5 Praetors shall join the Praetor Emeritus council for the life’s tenure upon finishing their tenure, if they so wish; no Praetor can be in service whilst being in Praetor Emeritus council.

Art. 6 Praetors in service shall carry the right of veto, which shall repeal any law constituted by the President or any Member of the Society, except for the Act of Foundation and Standing Orders within the existing law.

Art. 7 No judgement can be issued on the basis of the lack of agreement with the Member’s arguments. For it is the discussion and questioning, however reckless and irrational it may seem, that is the true virtue of a scientist and Member of the Society.

Art. 8 The Member of the Society may be disbarred from their membership, if convicted by the Council. Serving President and Members of the Convocation House are immune from the disbarment, however, they can be suspended for up to a year (except for the Prefect and the President);

Art. 9 The verdict of the Council may be appealed against to the Convocation House. However, the House shall only rule on the matter of law compliance and if there were any procedural misconducts of the case. It shall not consider the merit of the case or question the freedom of judgement. If the appeal is upheld, the conviction is void. The House may also decide to conduct another trial with a different judge.

Art. 10 The disbarment can only be issued, if the person if found guilty of breaching the cardinal values of the Society, as prescribed in the Act in Schedule 1, and they have also been suspended at least twice in the last ten years immediately before disbarment hearing. Upon disbarment, the Membership ceases, along with all the positions in the society. The disbarment can also be enhanced with the order of prohibition to re-enter the Society for up to ten years.

Art. 11 The disbarment can also be pursued in the Council, upon the conviction by the court of the land, on the indictment of wittingly committed crime, for which the pubic prosecution is initiated, and the penalty of imprisonment is sentenced.

Schedule 5 – The Initiatives

Art. 1 The Society may undertake different Initiatives. They shall always be within the mission, and promote the values of the Society.

Art. 2 Any Fellow may undertake the Initiative on behalf of the society, and cooperate with others to achieve its aims.

Art. 3 The Society shall undertake no financial Initiatives. However, the Initiatives undertaken by the Members may have their own budgets and organisations. These are not the responsibility of the Society. Nevertheless, the Praetorian Council may hold a Member accountable for gross misconduct in respect of the acts within the Initiatives.

Schedule 6 – The Conference

Art. 1 The Conference shall be held annually in August, and shall take place in Oxford; it shall last five days. All Members must be informed of the exact date of the Conference, which is set by the President.

Art. 2 All official business and appointments shall be conducted during the Conference.

Art. 3 During the first day of the Conference there shall be official appointments, followed by the speech of the President. They shall set out the agenda for the following year, and the Society shall discuss on how to implement the agenda, during their discussions on the Conference.

Schedule 7 – The Convocation House (“The House”)

Art. 1 The Convocation House shall consist of the retired Presidents.

Art. 2 The Convocation House shall elect its Prefect, it shall be the eldest member of the House at the time of appointment, and they shall be appointed for the life’s tenure.

Art. 3 The Prefect’s rights are as follows:

i) to issue an answer to the query of any Member without delay;

ii) to issue an answer to the query of any Member of the Public;

iii) to cast the deciding vote, if the House cannot agree on an issue (50/50 vote split);

iv) to enjoy due respect and recognition within the Society;

v) to propose amendments to the laws of the Society;

vi) to issue a veto, thereby repealing any laws of the Society apart from the Act and Standing Orders within the current law;

Art. 4 The Members of The House may propose amendments to the laws, which must be considered by the issuing body; each amendment must be accepted or rejected by the issuing body.

Schedule 8 – Advisory Boards

Art. 1 The Advisory Boards are boards of Members who specialize in a given niche within the neurosciences.

Art. 2 The Advisory Boards shall be established by the President, who shall also appoint the Secretaries of the Advisory Boards.

Art. 3 The Advisory Boards shall have autonomy within the society; they shall establish their own rules and procedures. Every Member of the Society may join The Advisory Board of their choice.

Art. 4 No Member shall be removed from the Board, except for the gross misconduct, as judged by the Council of Praetors.

Schedule 9 – Extraordinary circumstances

Art. 1 If there are less than 50 fellows, the right of graduation to the fellow is not limited to one per year.

Art. 2 If there are less than 5 fellows in the House (including the Prefect), then the Prefect shall nominate the remainder from the Fellows.

Art. 3 No local subsidiaries are to be made in different countries; for it is one Society for all, universal and international in its form.

Art. 4 The Society shall not be dissolved, but shall respect the laws of the land. The schedules not prescribed by The Act shall be ruled by the English Law.

Art. 5 The membership and all positions within the Society can be voluntarily given up. Notice shall be given to the President informing of the cessation of the membership.

Art. 6 All laws (except for the cases of the Council and the Act) shall be repealed on every 100th anniversary of the First Conference (28 August 1830). This, however, shall not change the Standing Orders appointing members to their positions, and any privileges granted before the acquired laws clause.

Art. 7 All privileges granted to any member shall expire upon conclusion of their tenure at a given position.

Art. 8 The Act can be changed within five first years of its establishment.

The Society is hereby founded.

Information: The Act of Foundation applies to the Society. The Society is also registered as a Charity in England and Wales, with its own constitution; that constitution is only applicable to the Society as a charity. Should the charity be liquidated, the Society shall still continue to operate in line with the Act of Foundation. (Reinvigorated at Oxford A.D. 2015)