I. Financial support by the Society and role of the Council
Financial grants must be decided by Council deliberation.
Council will decide, on an annual basis, to set aside a specific amount for projects proposed by ERA bodies. All proposals must be reviewed for feasibility and validity, as well as cost/efficiency, by the SAB. For this review a detailed grant proposal must be submitted. The said funds provided by ERA can be for support of third-party services or for direct support.
All projects that receive financial support by ERA must produce an end of project report/paper to be evaluated by the SAB, and eventually approved, by Council. If this specific matter is not already stated in one of the ERA committee regulations, the reference person within the Council in charge of presenting the report is the ERA Secretary-Treasurer.
II. Travel Reimbursement Policies
All travels done by ERA committee members, ERA staff and speakers representing ERA (with regard to the speakers at the annual ERA Congress and meetings organised by ERA please refer to the appropriate section in the “Specifications for Organising the ERA’s Congresses and Meetings”) that are refunded by ERA must be done using the cheapest available fee for the destination. Normally economy class is provided and tickets should be purchased as soon as the person is aware of the trip, so as to avoid booking last minutes flights which are normally more expensive. In specific cases for flights (one single flight) more than six hours a business ticket can be purchased (this rule is however not valid for trips where there is an agreement with a third party in place). If the trip is done by train, the reimbursement will be for a 1st class ticket on ordinary trains whereas for bullet trains (Alaris, Frecciarossa, TGV, Thalys, etc.) only 2nd class tickets will be refunded.
Reimbursements for travels done from home to the airport/train station and return as well as from the airport/train station to the hotel/meeting venue and return are also refunded and must be reasonable in cost, they can also be calculated according to a flat fee based on the following chart.
The use of a car is authorised only if it improves the cost effectiveness of the trip. If you wish to travel by car, please ask the ERA HQ in advance for a quote of the cost of the flight/train (if available) that ERA would have paid for your travel, in fact, ERA will always refund/cover the costs of the least expensive option if there is an option between train/airplane and car.
The reimbursement of traveling by car is calculated at a rate per km in accordance with the official national reimbursement chart of the person who is asking for the refund (in this case you will be asked to submit proof of the relevant charts). Other expenses (motorway tolls, parking, ferry crossing, etc.) can be also reimbursed on presentation of the corresponding supporting documents.
Tickets cancelled for a valid and unforeseen reason can be reimbursed by application to the ERA Secretary-Treasurer*. For reference, here is a chart with the maximum expected travel costs (economy): higher travel costs than these must be authorised by the ERA Secretary-Treasurer*.
*If this concerns the ERA Secretary-Treasurer’s own travel, the following two other officers (ERA President and ERA Renal Science Chair) will be in charge.
III. ERA Membership of ERA Committees/Boards
All board members of the ERA committee must be ERA Full members.
IV. Rotation of ERA Committee/Board members
Once a Committee/Board member has ended his/her term, they can only re-apply for a position on the same board after observing a minimum break of three years.
V. Council Members and ERA Committee Meetings
Any ERA Council member can participate in the WG or any other ERA committee board meeting upon request. This can also be done in a virtual manner since no travel/accommodation funds are available for this purpose. A specific request of this must be submitted, in writing, to the Chair of the ERA committee. If the Council member is not a committee board member, he/she will not be entitled to vote during the board meeting.
VI. ERA Committee Members and their DoI
All board members of the ERA committees, including also the editorial board members, must submit and regularly up-date, with a minimum of once a year, their personal DoI. The person responsible for making sure that all DoIs are properly submitted, and correct, are the Secretary-Treasurer for the ERA Council, the Chairs of the committees/boards and the Editors-in-Chief for the journals.
Any problems caused by false statements will be dealt with directly by the ERA Council. If a committee/board member does not submit his/her DoI this will be clearly highlighted in the relevant section of the ERA website and the ERA Council, with a simple majority vote, has the power to remove him/her from his/her role in the ERA committee/board.
VII. ERA Committee Chairs and their Participation in the Council Meeting.
When the ERA must vote to keep supporting an ERA committee, or stop doing so, the Chair of that particular committee or initiative should be present (virtual presence is also acceptable) at the Council meeting where this matter is discussed to reply to any question that arises from the Council discussion.
VIII. ERA Committee Members and Financial Compensation
Normally all work by all ERA committee members, including Editorial Boards, Working Groups, etc., is done on a voluntary basis.
No honorarium is therefore given by ERA to committee or board members for their work.
This same rule is also valid for ERA members who are speakers, in events organised by other societies, on behalf of ERA.
Exceptions to this rule must be authorized by the ERA President and when it concerns him/her by the Secretary-Treasurer or by the Council.
IX. Possible CoI rule for all ERA Council Members, Committee Members, Working Group Members, Editorial Board Members, etc.
During the discussion, or vote, of any matter in which an ERA Council member, or any other committee member is directly involved, that individual may remain in the meeting only to answer any specific factual questions from, or directed through, the President/Chair and must then retire from the room in which the meeting, and/or vote, is being held for the entire subsequent duration of that discussion and vote. He/she may only return to the room and further participate in the meeting, after the final discussion and vote has taken place, the subject finalised and recorded in the minutes of that meeting. This rule is also valid for senior staff (managers).
X. Confidentiality of Matters Decided During Council and all ERA Committee Meetings
All matters discussed, and especially the voting results (outcome) of discussions held during Council and all ERA committee/board meetings should be considered as confidential until they are officially confirmed by Council or until they can become public according to eventual specific rules of the committee/board.
XI. Activity of ERA Committees/Boards
All the proposals for the activity of ERA committees/boards must be approved first of all by the committee/board itself, evaluated by the SAB and then approved by the Council. If not specified in the single committee/board rules, all the costs related to these activities must be taken from the budget for the ERA committees/boards that is organising the CME and/or the project. The final report regarding both the CME activity/the project as well as the budget related to this, will be presented to Council, for formal approval, according to the rules outlined in regulations for each specific committee/board.
A clear time-line (beginning, development, end) of the CME activity/project must be included in the proposal of said activity.
XII. ERA Committees/Boards and ERA Visibility (including in Publications and Social Media activity)
It is essential that all ERA bodies give visibility to ERA, especially those committees that receive funding for their initiatives from ERA. The ERA logo must be present in their web-site, advertising, e-mail blasts, printed materials, etc. clarifying the role they have within the Society.
All publications made by ERA committees/boards must clearly mention the fact that they are an official committee/board of ERA. The sentence approved by Council related to this matter is: “This article (to be adapted accordingly) was written by (to be adapted accordingly) on behalf of the (to be adapted accordingly with the name of the board/committee) which is an official board/committee of the ERA (European Renal Association)”.
It is recommended that the output produced by ERA bodies in the name of ERA should be submitted for publication in ERA journals, subject to the usual peer review process and the Editor’s final decision.
The Renal Science Chair must be informed in advance about the intention of writing a paper. With regard to consensus/controversy statements, in addition to the Renal Science Chair notification, the SAB must evaluate the proposal (abstract) and the Council must give formal approval (mandatory) before the Committee can proceed. Any draft of the proposal of said activity must be circulated to all Board members, for their information, before the official submission for publication on behalf of the committee.
IMPORTANT: At least one current Board member must be one of the authors of the paper.
Finally, all Social Media activity linked to ERA bodies must comply with the Social Media Guidelines.
XIII. Expenses related to Board Meetings organised for ERA Committee board members during the Annual ERA Congress and Meetings Organised by ERA – see also the “Specifications for Organising the ERA’s Congresses and Meetings”
ERA has allocated budgets for all its Committees to organize a full day meeting at the ERA HQ & Educational Hub (Parma, Italy). All other meetings can be organised virtually. The only exception to this rule are the pre- and post-Congress Council meetings.
XIV. Diplomas for Committee Members
Diplomas must be given to all Committee Members ending their term.
The diplomas must be prepared using specific templates by the appropriate administrative coordinator and, if this is not specified in the specific regulations, by the ERA Secretary-Treasurer and normally signed by the ERA President and the ERA Secretary-Treasurer or by the ERA President and the Chair of the specific Committee.
The diplomas will be given to the committee member, or President/Chair, at the first possible face-to-face meeting by the President/Chair or President/Chair Elect of the committee. If this is not possible it can also be mailed by post or sent by electronic mail. In special cases the diploma can be given by the ERA President during the President’s Dinner at the annual ERA Congress: this is valid for all Council members and, for all the other cases, it will be the ERA President who will decide if and when to do this – see also the “Specifications for Organising the ERA’s Congresses and Meetings”
XV. Notification of Committee Candidates after they are Elected by Council or Confirmed by the General Assembly
The ERA Officer in charge of informing the relevant people of all candidates of ERA committees approved (or not approved) by Council and/or the General Assembly will normally be the ERA Secretary-Treasurer if not otherwise indicated in the single regulations. He/she will inform the Chairs of the various ERA Committees of the outcome of the elections/nominations so that the Chair can then inform the relevant people accordingly. If the ERA Committee has its Chair within the ERA Council, the notification will be given by the ERA Secretary-Treasurer directly.
XVI. Candidacy Template for ERA Committees
ERA has a special template that, with the appropriate adaptations according to the ERA Committee that must use it, must be used for all candidates who submit a candidature for an ERA Committee.
XVII. Conflicts of Commitment
All ERA Committee members should refrain from accepting similar positions in other societies with aims similar to ERA to avoid any potential conflict of interest while in office. If by any chance this however happens, the Council will decide (by secret vote), case by case, if the person can keep the positions or if she/he must choose one or the other. Generally speaking, the following rules should be respected:
- an officer of ERA is not allowed to be an officer of another international society in nephrology or related fields, or a council/board member of another international society;
- an ERA Council member is not allowed to be a council member of another major international nephrology society;
- a Chair of an ERA Committee cannot be in a similar position of a committee in another international society;
- a statement regarding positions in other Societies must be made in the DoI which must be submitted with the other relevant documents when submitting a candidature for any ERA Committee.
XVIII. Voluntary Resignation
Normally if an ERA Committee member resigns from his/her position before the end of his/her term, he/she is expected to fulfil his/her duties until a replacement for the same position is nominated/elected.
The nominated/elected person will follow the terms of replaced ones.
XIX. General Reimbursement Rules for ERA Committee Members, ERA Representatives, etc.
Normally all members travelling on behalf of ERA will have their expenses (i.e. travel, accommodation and, if contemplated, allowance) reimbursed after the trip. So that ERA can do this, a specific form must be used.
IMPORTANT: the amount claimed, in any case, must be reasonable.
XX. Ethical Conduct of all ERA Committee Members
XXI. Council guidelines with regard to industry grants
ERA must follow its goals remaining independent, at all times, from the influence of industry.
ERA however is conscious of the need to receive funding from industry for its initiatives.
As a general rule all funding received by industry for ERA activities should be clearly disclosed in publicly accessible documents.
It is preferable that industry funding is provided as an “unrestricted grant” or donation directly to ERA: the Council will then decide how to use the amounts received also taking into account the advice of the Chairs of the various ERA bodies.
In certain cases, however, industry may fund specific initiatives: in these cases, a full disclosure of all funding must be reported, for final approval, to the Council when the annual report of the ERA body, or the funded activity/initiative is done. The ERA Council may decide to keep a certain amount of the funds allocated for administrative purposes.
XXII. Board membership, Speakers and industry employees/representatives
Industry, or industry representatives/employees, cannot be a board member of ERA committees/bodies/working groups, etc. or normally be invited as Speaker/Chair for the ERA meetings and Congress – please see below for more details regarding this specific matter:
- Medical scientists – basic science scientists – technicians – engineers – employees – leaders receiving salaries and/or payments done on a regular basis directly by industry and working directly for industry will not be involved, directly or indirectly, in any ERA committee/body/working group, will not participate in said board meetings, production of papers and/or written recommendations;
- Any person receiving a salary (or part of his/her salary) or a regular payment from a company as a result of the company having purchased the property of the medical centre or University where this person works, and who is active as a professional specialist physician or who is directly involved in patients’ treatments may participate in the ERA committees/ bodies/working groups. However, they will not be involved in the committee/body/working group activities which may be affected or influenced, directly or indirectly, by their personal professional industry dependent work.
Any exception must be approved by the Council.
XXIII. FERA special privileges
One (1) extra point compared to other eventual candidates in the evaluation/selection of speakers for the ERA Ambassador programme and/or for the annual Congress and meetings as well as for the nomination in the board of the various ERA bodies will be given to candidates who have been granted FERA.
Last update: March 2023