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The IEEE Board of Directors has delegated responsibility to the IEEE Governance Committee for the review of all proposed revisions to IEEE governing documents including IEEE’s Constitution, Bylaws, Policies, Finance Operations Manual, Investment Operations Manual, Standing Committee Charters, and Operations Manuals (including the Major Board Operations Manuals) as described in IEEE Bylaws I-303.9 and I-305.7.
The above-mentioned documents are publicly available, shall be consistent across organizational units, and shall be legally compliant. Each organizational unit (OU) shall make available and maintain its Operations Manual online. Corporate Activities shall link to the manuals from the Governing Documents Web pages.


What are the operations manuals reviewed for?

The following points are considered during review:

  • consistency with higher-level governing documents;
  • clarity that the revision reflects the desired change;
  • legal concerns or risks to IEEE;
  • conflicts with other OU documents and activities;
  • flexibility within procedures;
  • assure all necessary information is included on submissions so that the approving body can make an informed decision.

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Types of review

There are two levels of approval for Major Board Operations Manuals.

  • IEEE Board of Directors approval. Specific sections that require approval by the IEEE Board of Directors (PDF, 52 KB) may be circulated using the 30-Day Review Process. A complete list of these activities is kept by Corporate Activities. Each operations manual shall contain the sections of the manual that require Board approval and the names of the organizational unit(s) responsible for review and/or comment.
  • Major Board approval. Remaining sections may be approved and adopted by the respective Major Boards after review. A member of the IEEE staff, designated by the IEEE Executive Director, who shall normally be the Governance Committee Staff Secretary, shall review amendments to the Major Board Operations Manuals not requiring IEEE Board approval. When appropriate, the Governance Committee and/or IEEE's legal counsel shall be consulted.


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Procedure for revisions

All submissions should include the following:
An Executive Summary: The Executive Summary should be written as if it were being shown to someone new to the organization. It should be clear, concise, and complete. It should include:

  • the rationale for the change;
  • the history behind the change;
  • the names of any organizational units that have seen, endorsed, or provided comment on the item (include dates, if appropriate;
  • the name and number of the specific manual section of the manual being changed.

The current text, as it appears in the most recently approved manual: Use strikethroughs and underscores to note the change(s) being submitted for review.

Financial implications: All items going to the IEEE Board of Directors should state whether there are financial implications. If there are, a Financial Implications Form (DOC, 34 KB) should be included with the item. Items going to a Major Board for approval should state that the Board will be made aware of financial implications, if any.

All submitters should complete the Operations Manual Submission (DOC, 32 KB) form.

The IEEE Governance Committee, or the designated staff, as the case may be, discusses modifications, if needed, and comes to agreement with the organizational unit. Once approved by the Committee, the organizational unit may adopt the revision according to its own established approval process.


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Submission schedule

In order to accommodate the Major Boards meeting schedule and allow for a thorough review by the IEEE Governance Committee, items requiring IEEE Board approval should be submitted no later than the submission dates for the IEEE Board items. For 2013, those dates are: 

Board Meeting Date
Submission Deadline
12–13 January 2013
17–18 February 2013
14 December 2013
30 June–1 July 2013
16 April 2013
24–25 November 2013 20 September 2013

Items that do not require IEEE Board approval may be submitted at any time. A response on the outcome of the review from the Staff designee will be provided normally within two weeks. If a longer period for the review is needed, the submitter(s) shall be notified and a new date for completion will be set. 

The Governance Staff is available to answer questions and assist in the development and review of new documents or amendments at any time prior to submission.

Submissions should be sent to


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Bylaw I-305.7. Governance Committee

The IEEE Governance Committee shall be appointed by and shall be responsible to the Board of Directors. The Committee shall assist the Board of Directors on governance matters related to the effectiveness and efficiency of IEEE. Such matters shall include, but are not limited to, the review of proposed amendments to IEEE’s governing documents to assure clarity, consistency, and legal compliance; leadership training and orientation for new Board members; and providing guidance on organizational structure.


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Bylaw I-303.9. Major Board Operating Procedures

Each Major Board shall adopt operating procedures that are responsive to the needs of such Major Board for the purpose of governing its operations and administration. These operating procedures shall be maintained in an Operations Manual and shall conform to and not conflict with the IEEE governance documents described in Bylaw I-300. The Operations Manuals or any amendments to its procedures shall not be adopted until such Operations Manuals or any amendments have been submitted to and are reviewed by the IEEE Governance Committee. The minimum required information to be contained in the Major Board Operations Manuals shall be specified in the IEEE Policies.


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