Re: Dialectical Psychology

From: Steve Gabosch (
Date: Tue Jun 07 2005 - 19:26:50 PDT

I see that the Dialectical Psychology site located at now has an English
translation button, which will certainly help those of us English speakers
who are Russian-language-challenged. The post that Mike made from this
group can be found at that site under "forum" and then "the
registration". And I really thank Mike for emphasizing importance of
translation work in making collaboration like this possible.

And I agree with Andy that this new group is significant, for at least two
reasons. One, in and of itself, it is a new and real opportunity to
collaborate with and learn from those who are immersed in the traditions of
Russian psychology. I plan to apply for membership myself. And two, it is
a good example of new opportunities afforded by the "Sections" concept that
ISCAR has recently opened up for such collaborations. The Dialectical
Psychology group is a perfect example of what ISCAR is now promoting.

The latest ISCAR newsletter (International Society for Cultural and
Activity Research - which is having its first congress in Sevilla, Spain
this September) explains these Sections, which require a recommended
minimum of 6 members of ISCAR to form, and can be on any theme relevant to
ISCAR. It is similar in essence to the Special Interest Groups (SIGs) that
AERA (American Educational Research Association) sponsors, of which the
CH-SIG (Cultural Historical Research) that Anna is president of this year
is one. (Gotta love those acronyms!)

First: the portion of the May 2005 newsletter that explains the Sections.

Second: the wording adopted by the ISCAR Executive Committee that
authorizes Sections.

from the May 2005 ISCAR Newsletter

2. Introduction to "ISCAR Sections"

The Executive Committee would like to develop the concept of ISCAR section.
The term is already used in relation to the formation of the Executive
(see newsletter, Vol. 3., No. 3). We would like to maintain the idea of a
section as a organized sphere of action within ISCAR. For now we would
prefer to
start with a minimal bureaucratic structure, allow ideas and organizational
to be developed by ISCAR members, and then refine and elaborate the concept
as we
all gain practical experience.

An Executive Order has been prepared that formally defines the "section"
concept as a "meaningful entity that contributes actively to ISCAR's purpose
of promoting mutual scientific communication and research cooperation among
its members, within the scope described in ISCAR Article 3(a)." The Executive
Order also specifies requirements for a section's organisation and
resources from and relation to ISCAR, along with the processes by which one
be formed or terminated.

All ISCAR members are invited to send proposals for starting an ISCAR section.
If you are interested in forming a section, or want to understand the idea in
more detail, then the full Executive Order is available at:

A one-page proposal form is available at:

adopted by the ISCAR Executive Committee, effective May 1, 2005

ISCAR Sections

Executive Order Nr. 1

General Definition of 'Section'

A section is a 'meaningful entity that contributes actively to ISCAR's
purpose of promoting mutual scientific communication and research
cooperation among its members, within the scope described in
<>ISCAR Article 3(a)'. 'Meaningful' is
understood contextually such that the organizing principle for a section
could be, for example, thematic, linguistic, national, or regional.
'Entity' is understood as an organized structure, formed by the members of
the section, that actively creates conditions for scientific communication
(e.g., symposia, conferences, newsletters, publications, courses, mailing

Section Organization and Functioning

There is no minimum required size for a section, but members are encouraged
to form sections around a principle that will assemble at least 6 members.

All ISCAR sections are open to participation by all ISCAR members.
The internal organization of the section (e.g., leadership, activities) are
decided by the members of the section, though with the following requirements:
    * at least one person must be identified as the liaison between the
section and the Executive Committee;
    * at least one person must be identified as the contact person for
ISCAR members who want to communicate about the section;
    * any changes of the liaison or contact person must be reported to the
Executive Committee no later than one month after the change; and
    * at the beginning of the Association year (1 January), the liaison
must send a brief report to the ISCAR Secretary about:
        * how many members are in the section,
        * what activities the section have conducted over the past year,
        * what activities the section plans for the coming year,
        * other information or comments that the section wants to
communicate to the Executive Committee.

Cooperation and communication across sections is encouraged.

A section is understood as internal to the Association. It may not
represent the Association in any business matters or present itself as
representing ISCAR, though it may identify itself publically as 'Section on
<section name> within ISCAR'

Resources from ISCAR

ISCAR will provide access to its webserver so that a section can maintain a
website for the section. ISCAR will also provide assistance with a mailing
list if necessary.

Requests for other resources or assistance should be addressed to the
Executive Committee and sent by email to:

Process of Section Formation

Any ISCAR member may propose a new section, which must be formed as a
written application to ISCAR's Executive Committee, and sent by email to

Only ISCAR's Executive Committee may approve the formation of a new
section. The Executive Committee may decide whether approvals are to be
made by the full Committee or a subcommittee appointed for this purpose.
Disagreements about approval that cannot be resolved after dialogue, will
be decided with a written, secret ballot, with a simple majority being
sufficient for approval.
Proposals for a new section can be sent at any time, and must include:
    * name of section
    * description of the section's purpose and scope (e.g., who is likely
to be a member, what content and themes will be in focus)
    * brief description of expected activities
    * brief comment on possible overlap with existing sections, and why a
separate section would be desirable
    * name and email address of the liaison
    * name and email address of the contact person.

The Executive Committee may request further information or clarification in
relation to a submitted proposal.

All proposals for sections that are organized primarily around a national
or regional principle must be coordinated with the relevant member(s) of
the Executive Committee.

The Executive Committee should send a decision about the proposal's
acceptance or rejection no later than two months after the proposal was
received, or an explanation about why more time is needed. Rejected
proposals should receive a brief explanation about why it was rejected.

Process of Section Termination

A section may be terminated if:
    * the liaison does not communicate with the Secretary at the beginning
of the Association year;
    * the liaison sends a request to the Secretary that the section be
    * the section engages in activities that are contrary to the
Association's articles and standing orders;
    * at least three fourths of the Executive Committee agree to terminate
the section.

Termination of a section must be communicated to the liaison by the
Secretary and to the members, by the Association's normal communication
media, no later than one month after the termination.

Relation to ISCAR's Articles and Standing Orders

The Executive Committee should try to replace this Executive Order with a
modification to <>Article 11 and a
corresponding Standing Order by the 2008 Members' Meeting.

This Order was accepted by unanimous agreement of the Executive Committee,
and is effective from 1. May 2005.


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