Steering Committee (SC)
For gaining the trust of the member organizations, the SC of the Alliance is composed of knowledgeable and committed representatives of the individual member organizations. These representatives have a clear and official mandate to act and vote on behalf of their respective organizations, so that the decision-making process of the Alliance can be effective and that decisions will be accepted and respected by the members. The SC defines the strategy of the Alliance and the processes in focal areas (finance management procedures, advocacy, service portfolio development, communication structures etc.). The SC is not only in charge of the Alliance’s policies, strategy, and to supervise the CDO but must also play an active role right from the start, in consideration of the limited resources of the coordination desk. Therefore, the commitment is of utmost importance. Without committed members, critical tasks such as engagement of external stakeholders and fundraising will be unobtainable.
The tasks of the SC are:
i. Approval of Strategic Plan
ii. Approval of a 3-5 years business plan
iii. Approval of annual plan of activities
iv. Approval of Annual Budget for Plan of Activities and other costs
v. Approval of projects and activities (e.g. marketing, research, etc.)
vi. Supervision of CDO, including recruitment
vii. Appointing needs based Working Groups and Ad-Hoc committees if need arises
viii. Identify advocacy issues based on membership assessment
ix. Advocates for the Alliance (in charge of external relationships, unless given to CDO) and engages with external stakeholders relevant to the cause
x. Project-related fundraising, e.g. mobilizing sponsors for events such as conferences
xi. Chairman, Vice Chairman and Treasurer approves expenditures up to a certain level
xii. Treasurer of SC supervise financial transactions
xiii. Appoints external financial auditor
xiv. Supporting the Capacity Building within the Alliance
Becoming a member of the SC
This aspect intertwines with the eligibility of membership in general. Only “real” organizations active in the RE/EE sector are qualified to nominate a representative and an alternate to the SC. The organizations have to give evidence that they are a functioning and active.
Once the issue of eligibility is cleared, then each eligible organization is allowed to send 1 representative to the SC. Ideally the representative should be a knowledgeable and committed senior member of the organization. He/she should not only be able to attend the SC meetings regularly, but also to prepare the SC meetings (based on MoM of past meetings, agenda, announced discussion points and submitted proposals)provide “technical” inputs to concept papers, give feedback on documents circulated by the CDO and engage members of his/ her organization to contribute to the implementation of selected activities of the Alliance (e.g. overtaking some tasks for the organization of a joint conference).
As mentioned already above, SC representatives that don’t attend SC meetings in sequence will be sanctioned: The concrete sanctions have to be defined by the SC and should be included in the statutes of the Alliances, but can comprise e.g. the loss of the voting right and/ or the exclusion from some benefits (discount on trade fairs and trainings etc.).
Structure of the SC
The number of representatives in the SC depends on the number or member organizations.
Each member organization is eligible to nominate one representative and one deputy. It is part of the important task of the SC representative to continuously inform the deputy so that the deputy can take over in case the deputy has to substitute at a SC meeting and can make educated and informed decisions.
The SC will be composed of the general representatives and they will elect the following office bearers: Chairman, Vice-Chairman, and Treasurer, with an election of every two (2) years.
Decision making rules
Another crucial aspect for the success of the Alliance is the fact that every organization has an equal voice.
This is reflected in the decision-making process and therefore structured as follows: One vote per organisation based on representation; Secret voting; Simple majority, where there is a tie, ballot is used. The voting right can be taken away, in case of NON-Attendance at SC meetings in sequence.
Frequency of meetings and structure
The Alliance, being a young organization seeks to create and use the momentum, thus the SC should initially meet quarterly (4 times per annum) for the first 2 years and after that the SC holds 2 statutory meetings per annum.
The meetings will be announced by the CDO in conjunction with the Chairman of the SC based on the agreed calendar. The CDO will send out reminders through text messages and WhatsApp notifications at least one week before the meeting.
The agenda for SC meetings have a standardized structure, e.g.
Progress report of the CDO (based on the annual plan), showing Completed activities and their results (for instance trainings >> number of trainees and analyzed feedback, based on feedback sheets) which activities are on-time and on-track, to what extent activities are delayed and for which reasons and what are suggested correction measures etc. planned main steps for the next 3 months Decisions of the SC in regards to on-going activities, if necessary.
Brief impulse speech on a selected topic and discussion (related to the dynamics in the market and its political regulatory framework), could be done by a member organization (rotation, has to be fixed in the meeting before) Presentation of concepts/ proposals
For planned activities (as foreseen in the annual plan); proposals should also follow a standardized form (background/ motivation, why to be done by the Alliance/ value-added, objective/ what shall be reached, approach/ main steps, activity plan, roles and responsibilities, budget plan, finance plan). For“new” activities, not yet foreseen in the annual plan Discussion and decisions. Other issues (not related to activities, rather related to management/ CD etc.).
It is highly recommended that amendments to the “constitution”/ statutes of the Alliance can only be decided unanimously but has to be decided by the SC.