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Share your views on proposed changes to the IET’s Royal Charter and Bye-laws

The IET was founded in 1871 and incorporated by Royal Charter in 1921. The current Royal Charter of the IET was allowed by the Privy Council in 2007 and the current Bye-laws were approved in 2016.

Our Bye-laws are available on the IET website.

The Board of Trustees reviews the Bye-laws from time to time, to consider whether any amendments or additions are required. In 2021 a Working Party was established to do this and its recommendations were reported to the Board of Trustees in May 2022.

The report recommended a number of changes, which will be proposed to IET members in due course. These recommendations fall into three categories:

  • Professional conduct – amendments to modernise the Bye-laws relating to breaches of professional conduct by aligning the requirements of the Engineering Council on standards of conduct and non-compliance with Continuing Professional Development requirements.
  • Modernising governing instruments – to modernise elements of governance, including the ability to allow virtual attendance and voting at Annual General Meetings and the need to physically sign on admission as a member. Also to update wording around powers and the management of conflicts of interest, in accordance with modern good practice and the expectations of the Charity Commission, and to provide clarity on both personal benefits and conflicts of interest.
  • Administration – administrative changes such as the removal of one instance of gender specific language and clauses relating to the 2016 transition arrangements. These have been deliberately kept to the minimum to keep the changes manageable.

At this time, the Board of Trustees wishes to seek members’ views on two matters to find out whether they are in favour of the following proposals and which option is preferred.

  • A proposal concerning Professional Conduct, which recommended adding either or both the words “respect” and “dignity” to Bye-laws 29-30. We would like to know from members whether such an addition is desirable.
  • A proposal to amend Bye-law 40, regarding the number of members required to requisition a Special General Meeting. The requirement for 50 members to sign a requisition was set in 1921, at which time there were approximately 10,000 members. The number of voting members is now approximately 105,000. It has been suggested that the number should be increased to reflect the current situation or be linked to a specific percentage of voting members. We would like to know from members whether an absolute number or a percentage would be preferable.

Please visit the Royal Charter and Bye-laws page of the IET website for more information.

Please send your comments on the Royal Charter and Bye-laws and, in particular on the two proposals described above by writing to the Chief Executive and Secretary at by 15 August 2022.