At the 2007 Spring MIST meeting it was agreed that rather than a single MIST co-ordinator, MIST Council should be formed to organise and manage MIST activities. It was hoped that MIST Council would energise the MIST community whilst improving the visibility and impact of MIST science. The first MIST Council developed a charter, which now acts as a guiding document as to both the activities of the community and MIST Council.
Last amended 11 October 2021
1.1 This is the charter for the Magnetosphere, Ionosphere and Solar Terrestrial science community, also known as "MIST". It is a community of UK-based scientists with interests in physical processes within the Sun-Earth system, other solar system bodies and exo-planets; in particular the solar/stellar wind, moons and planetary atmospheres and magnetospheres.
1.2 MIST is recognised by the Royal Astronomical Society (RAS) as a specialist group and as such is affiliated to the RAS.
2.1 Provide a forum for the exchange of ideas among MIST scientists, students and other parties interested in MIST related science to advance our understanding of the energy transfer from the Sun through the solar system and associated subjects.
2.2 Promote our science and interests to the public, wider scientific community and other stakeholders in MIST.
2.3 Conduct meetings to advance the state of knowledge of MIST related science and to promote and facilitate the sharing of ideas and techniques between members of the MIST community.
2.4 Distribute relevant information to its members via the MIST website, MIST mailing lists or other appropriate methods.
2.5 Promote discussions of programmatic issues relevant to the development of MIST related science.
2.6 To provide a means of influencing UK policy on MIST related science.
3.1 Any UK-based individual who is an active scientist in a MIST related science and who joins the MIST mailing list is considered a part of the MIST community. Active scientists based in other countries are also welcome to join the MIST mailing list and will be considered a part of the MIST community.
3.2 Any individual who is interested in supporting MIST related science who joins the MIST mailing list is considered a part of the MIST community.
3.3 Membership of the Royal Astronomical Society (RAS) is not required for membership of MIST, but is encouraged.
4.1 MIST council is the collective term for the officers of MIST and consists of six individuals and one student representative from the MIST community.
4.2 MIST council is responsible for ensuring that MIST fulfills its purpose as outlined in Article II.
4.3 MIST council will elect one member to act as Chair of MIST council. All other roles and responsibilities of the individual members of the council are decided by the council; these are reviewed after each election (including the Chair of MIST council). Possible roles are outlined in Appendix 1.
4.4 A minimum of one MIST council meeting will be held each year. Other meetings may be called by the Chair, or a majority of the council members. The MIST council may meet and transact business by telephone conference call or email. Formal MIST councils require at least three members to participate.
4.5 The MIST council may, from time to time, charter additional members or subcommittees to address specific issues and business with specified portfolios.
4.6 MIST council can be removed from office via a vote of no confidence from the MIST community. To facilitate a confidence vote an extraordinary MIST business meeting must be called (by any member of the MIST community) if more than 10% of the MIST community (defined as 10% of the people subscribed to the MIST mailing list) is in agreement. The meeting must be held within a month of the announcement at an agreed venue. The complete MIST council will be removed if 2/3 of the meeting attendees declare no confidence in the MIST council.
5.1 Members of MIST council serve terms of three years, except for the student representative who serves a term of one year.
5.2 Elections will be announced at the Spring MIST meeting and voting must begin within two months of the Spring MIST meeting. Two slots on MIST council will be open in a given normal election year, alongside the student representative.
5.3 In a normal election the MIST council will appoint one (or more) member(s) of the MIST community to act as returning officer. The returning officer will not be eligible for election to MIST council and can be a current member of MIST council who is not seeking re-election.
5.4 Elections for the position of MIST council member will be held via an internet poll or electronic mail at the discretion of the returning officer. All members of the MIST community must be offered the opportunity to vote.
5.5 The returning officer will solicit nominations from the MIST community. Members of the MIST community can self nominate. To be eligible for election nominated candidates must be based in the UK. In the absence of a nomination MIST council reserves the right to co-opt members of the MIST community to serve on MIST council.
5.6 Upon closure of nominations, the returning officer will prepare the ballot and publicize the ballot to all members of the MIST community via the MIST mailing list and the MIST web page. The ballot will contain candidate names alphabetical by family name and home institute. The returning officer will allow for at least one month between electronic mailing and the election deadline.
5.7 Those candidates receiving the most valid votes will be elected to MIST council. In the case of a tie the position on MIST council will be decided by the drawing of lots by those candidates with a tied number of votes.
5.8 Members of MIST council can stand for election for only two consecutive terms.There is no restriction on the absolute number of times that a member of the MIST community can stand for election.
5.9 A MIST council member can resign his/her position at any time by writing to the MIST council chair stating their intention to resign. MIST council will then co-opt a member of the MIST community to sit on council for the remainder of the resigning member’s term.
5.10 Candidates for student representative must not have submitted their PhD thesis at the time that nominations close.
5.11 If a MIST Council member has a period of absence (e.g. for parental leave, family leave, ill-health, sabbatical etc) during their term, then they will be invited (but not obligated) to extend their term by the appropriate amount.
6.1 Spring MIST and Autumn MIST meetings will be held each year. The Spring MIST meeting will be held in the spring or summer, and the Autumn MIST meeting will be held in the autumn.
6.2 A MIST business meeting will be held annually, usually during the Spring MIST meeting. This meeting is open to the entire MIST community.
6.3 Minutes from MIST council and business meetings will be taken and made public on the MIST website.
6.4 MIST will provide an on-line forum to allow ongoing discussions and the formulation of ideas prior to public dissemination. This forum will be private, visible only to registered members; membership is restricted to active MIST scientists and is offered at the discretion of MIST council chair.
6.5 From time to time MIST council has the authority to call for a meeting of active MIST scientists to discuss programmatic issues. Each meeting shall decide on the form of meeting outputs and how they shall be disseminated.
7.1 This charter statement can only be modified following consideration of the amendment by the MIST community.
7.2 Any member of the MIST community can offer a suggestion to amend the MIST charter. Any suggestion to amend must include the proposed text of the amendment.
7.3 Suggested amendments must first be put to the MIST council who will vote on whether to put the motion to amend to the MIST community.
7.4 Once a motion to amend passes MIST council it must be put to the community via electronic mail or an internet poll.
7.5 If greater than 10% of the MIST community (defined as 10% of the people subscribed to the MIST mailing list) votes against the motion to amend, the motion is not carried.
Potential roles and responsibilities within MIST council: