Section By-Laws

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Revised 1989, 1997, 2015, 2016, 2017

The Section on Comparative-Historical Sociology seeks to promote comparative and historical scholarship in Sociology. Comparative and historical scholarship is one of the oldest, most varied and distinguished traditions in sociology, now undergoing a renaissance. The Section seeks to promote the research, teaching and professional activities of those who work within this broad intellectual tradition. To this end, the Section may sponsor meetings and conferences, newsletters and publications, and other means of communication deemed appropriate by the council of this Section.

Comparative sociology refers to cross-cultural and/or cross-national research, and also includes comparisons of civilizations, historical periods, regions, communities, and institutional sectors. Historical sociology refers to studies that examine processes over time and that describe and explain social phenomena that have been delimited historically. Comparative-historical sociology is thus interpreted to encompass a wide variety of theoretical positions, methodological styles, and substantive topics.

Officers of the Section:

The officers of the Section shall be a Chair, a Chair-elect, a Past- Chair, and a Secretary-Treasurer. The Chair-Elect shall serve for one year, after which he or she will assume the Chair. The Chair shall serve for one year, after which he or she will become

Past-Chair. The Secretary-Treasurer shall serve for a period of three years. There shall be a council, consisting of six members each serving for three years, with two council seats being vacated each year, and two student members with staggered terms of two years each. The Chair, Chair-elect, and the Secretary-Treasurer shall serve as ex officio voting members of the Council, with the Chair of the Section acting as Chair of the Council. The duty of the Chair-elect will be to chair the membership committee. All other Section business will be handled by the Chair, including planning the program for the Annual Meetings of the Association. Newsletter editors(s) shall be appointed by the Council and serve ex officio on it. No member can hold two offices simultaneously or serve more than two terms in any ten-year period for all official roles in the Section (except for newsletter editorship). If an elected officer is elected to another office, the prior office shall be declared vacant. If an elected office is vacated before the term is completed, it shall be filled through appointment by the Chair for the unexpired term, subject to confirmation by the Council at its next meeting. Only voting members of the Association shall be eligible to hold office.

Powers of the Officers:

The Council shall make decisions by majority rule of its attending members, acting as the representative of the membership of the Section in order to carry out all necessary operations. Any action of the Section, including changes of the By-Laws, may be brought to the vote of the Section by the Council, or by a petition of l0 percent or twenty-five of the members, whichever is less. Questions that are interpreted by the Council to be matters of new program development or policy shall be brought before the membership for discussion.

Elections and Voting:

The elections of the Section shall be carried out in cooperation with the American Sociological Association and coordinated to their schedule. Newly elected officers and Council members shall assume office on the day following the annual business meeting of the Section at the American Sociological Association’s Annual Meeting. Newly elected officers and Council members are urged to attend meetings of the Council prior to assuming office as non-voting members.


There shall be a Committee on Nominations, formed each year at the annual business meeting of the Section. The Nominating Committee shall consist of three members: the Past-chair, one member appointed by the Council, and one elected from the floor at the business meeting. No member shall serve on the Nominating Committee for more than two consecutive years.” Two candidates will be presented for each office by the Committee on Nominations. Other Committees shall be appointed by the Chair with the approval of the Council on an ad hoc basis.


The membership of the Section is open to any member of the American Sociological Association without regard to the classification of the membership. Members who do not pay their Section dues shall be suspended, and dropped from the rolls after two years.


Dues shall be set by the Council to cover the operation of the Section in accord with the requirements of the American Sociological Association.