SIGMAA for the Philosophy of Mathematics


Revised 2-1-12

Article I       Identification

Section 1. This SIGMAA shall be called the SIGMAA for the Philosophy of Mathematics.

Section 2. The SIGMAA for the Philosophy of Mathematics has as its purposes to stimulate an interest in the philosophy of mathematics in the wider mathematical community, including undergraduate and graduate students, high school, college and university faculty, and mathematicians in industry; to inform this wider community of concepts, issues, and recent developments in the philosophy of mathematics; and to encourage research, and the communication of ideas and results, in the philosophy of mathematics by people with a substantial understanding of both mathematics and philosophy.  The mathematical focus of this SIGMAA revolves around issues and questions about the nature of mathematics, mathematical objects, mathematical knowledge, mathematical esthetics and ethics, the development of mathematical concepts and subjects, and the relationship between mathematics and the physical and intellectual world.  Since one's philosophy of mathematics affects (sometimes consciously, sometimes unconsciously) one's teaching style and attitude toward students, this research and discussion can be expected to have a large effect on the teaching of mathematics.

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Article II       Activities

Section 1. The SIGMAA for the Philosophy of Mathematics will engage in activities such as the following:

   a. Talks, panels and paper presentations at MAA meetings; efforts will be made to assure that some of these presentations are accessible to and of likely interest to members of the wider community of mathematicians.

   b. Electronic newsletter. 

   c. Web page. 

   d. Promote submissions to publications that further the goals of this SIGMAA. 

   e. Receptions and business meetings at MAA meetings.

   f. Other activities found by the members to be appropriate to the purposes of this SIGMAA and the purposes of the MAA.

Section 2. Relations with MAA Activities:

   a. The SIGMAA for the Philosophy of Mathematics will coordinate its activities at national meetings with the MAA Associate Secretary.  At times, this SIGMAA may interact with various MAA committees with charges related to issues of interest to this SIGMAA.

   b. Without prior approval of the MAA Executive Committee, any activities of this SIGMAA, including publications, will be  represented as coming from this SIGMAA and not from the MAA at large.

   c. Reports of this SIGMAA's activities will be submitted annually by this SIGMAA to the MAA Committee on SIGMAAs with copies to the chair of the Coordinating Council to which this SIGMAA is assigned.

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Article III       Meetings

Section 1. Frequency and place of meetings.

General membership meetings of this SIGMAA shall take place at winter meetings of the MAA; if attendance at summer meetings warrants it, membership meetings may also take place at these.  Other activities may be scheduled at MAA Section meetings.

Section 2. Conduct of meetings.

Meetings shall be conducted by the Chairperson of the SIGMAA for the Philosophy of Mathematics; if the Chairperson is not present, the Past Chair/Chair-Elect or (if this officer is also not present) another member of the Executive Board will conduct the meeting.  Order of items at the meeting shall consist of: (1) approval of minutes of the last meeting; (2) old business, if any; (3) new business already on the agenda, if any; (4) new business coming from the floor, if any; (5) announcements, if any; (6) general discussion, if any.  To be included on the agenda of a meeting, items must be sent to the Secretary at least 3 weeks prior to the meeting.  On all items except change in this charter, a simple majority vote of those present (assuming there is a quorum) is sufficient.  For changes in this charter, see Article VIII, below.  In general, meetings will be conducted fairly informally; however if there is a question of appropriate action, Robert's Rules of Order will serve as the final arbiter. 

Section 3. Quorum.

A quorum at membership meetings shall consist of 1/25 of the membership of the SIGMAA, or eight members, whichever is larger.

Article IV       Membership.

Section 1. Membership in the SIGMAA for the Philosophy of Mathematics shall be open to any MAA member.

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Article V Officers and Elections.

Section 1. Officers of the SIGMAA for the Philosophy of Mathematics will be Chairperson, Past Chair/Chair-Elect, Secretary, Treasurer, Program Director, Public Information Officer (collectively referred to as the Executive Board).  A new Chairperson is elected every two years, and cannot succeed him/herself, although a Chairperson can be elected again after not being on the Executive Board for two years.  Past Chair is the most recent past chairperson, and serves for one year; Chair-elect serves on the executive board the year prior to becoming Chair.  Thus, in any given year, there is either a Past Chair or a Chair-Elect, but not both.  Secretary, Treasurer, and Public Information Officer are elected every five years.  Program Director is elected every two years.    New officers take office at the conclusion of the winter meeting.  The incoming Chair is elected during the first year of the current Chair's term, becoming Chair-Elect during the current Chair's second year and becoming Chair the year after, as the Chair being succeeded becomes Past Chair.

Section 2. Duties of Officers.  The Chairperson chairs the meetings and oversees the SIGMAA's activities. The Past Chair acts as advisor to the SIGMAA generally and to the Executive Board in particular. The Chair-elect becomes Chairperson one year after being selected as Chair-elect. The Secretary shall have the usual duties pertaining to the office, including the custody of the records (including membership list) and minutes of the SIGMAA, the giving of due notice of all meetings, the supervision of elections, serving as liaison with the MAA Associate Secretary, submitting written reports to the MAA as required, and handling all correspondence related to activities of the SIGMAA except that concerning finances or programs at meetings. The Treasurer shall be responsible for all finances of the SIGMAA, including the monitoring of income coming from dues paid to the MAA for membership in this SIGMAA, the supervision and safekeeping of the funds of the SIGMAA, and the preparation of the annual budget and financial reports as required.  The Public Information Officer is responsible for maintaining the SIGMAA's web page, editing the SIGMAA's newsletter, and notifying SIGMAA members of a new edition of the newsletter or sending it to members electronically, and other informational communications with members.  The Program Director is responsible for coordinating the programs at the meetings and carrying out all correspondence related to these programs.

Section 3.  Elections.  Elections shall be conducted electronically by the MAA in October.  Nominations and ballot shall be handled electronically.  The secretary will send members a request for nominations at the beginning of August, with a deadline for nominations of August 31.  The winner will be the candidate receiving the most votes.  The Public Information Officer will notify members of the election via the POMSIGMAA electronic discussion group and the POMSIGMAA web page.

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Article VI       Finances.

Section 1. An MAA dues supplement of $10 shall be assessed each member of this SIGMAA. This fee will be used to support in part the activities of this SIGMAA. The manner of collection and disbursement of these funds will be determined by the MAA Executive Committee. 

Section 2. This SIGMAA shall submit an expense budget for each calendar year to the MAA Director of Programs by no later than April 1 of the preceding year. The budget shall state expected fund balances at the end of the current year, expected revenue for the coming year, and the projected cost for each planned SIGMAA activity for the coming year, including in particular the costs of receptions, space, equipment, et cetera at meetings, national or otherwise. As part of the general MAA budgeting process, the budget is subject to approval of the Budget Committee, Executive Committee, and Board of Governors.

Section 3. The SIGMAA may apply to the MAA for specific funding beyond what is provided from dues. All requests for funds shall be substantiated by a budget for the proposed expenditures.

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Article VII       External Funding.

Section 1. No officer or member of this SIGMAA may apply for a grant to support this SIGMAA's activities or enter into any contract to support such activities or to provide services without specific approval in writing by the president of the MAA or designee thereof. If this SIGMAA wishes to apply for external funds, it shall coordinate this activity with the MAA Subcommittee on Externally Funded Projects and go through the standard procedures for applying for external funding under the auspices of the MAA.

Section 2. Neither this SIGMAA nor any officer nor representative thereof shall have any authority to contract debts for, pledge the credit of, or in any way bind the MAA.

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Article VIII       Changes.

Section 1. Changes to this Charter may be proposed by any group of at least five members of the SIGMAA.  Such proposals should be sent to the Secretary, who will send notice of the proposed changes to the members at least one month prior to a vote.  Changes to this Charter must be approved by 2/3 vote either of the members present at a general meeting (assuming a quorum is present; see Article III, Section 3) or of the members voting if the vote is taken by e-mail. The proposed changes must then be submitted for approval by the MAA Executive Committee. 

Section 2. Changes to this Charter may also be initiated by the Executive Committee of the MAA. In this event, changes must be approved by the Board of Governors.

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Article IX       Dissolution.

Section 1. This SIGMAA shall be dissolved for either of the following reasons:

   a. Failure to maintain at least 25 members for two consecutive years; 

   b. For reasons agreed to by a majority vote of the Board of Governors.

Section 2. If this SIGMAA is dissolved, any unspent funds assigned to it shall be returned to the MAA's general fund.

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