Ship Observations Team Executive Board

SOT Executive Board Terms of Reference
(Version 27 April 2020)

The Terms of Reference of the SOT EB shall be:

  1. To seek guidance from the SOT at its regular sessions regarding specific issues to be addressed by the SOT EB and task teams during the intersessional period;

  2. To act promptly to deal with any SOT-related administrative, financial, and planning issues and opportunities that might arise, within the guidelines established and reviewed regularly by the team;

  3. To authorize the chairperson or the vice-chairperson as delegated, to commit any expenditure necessary for the resolution of these issues and the promotion of the team’s aims and objectives, up to the maximum amounts that might be agreed in advance by the SOT EB, by the SOT at regular session, or by the availability of funds;

  4. To assist the chairperson with regard to continuing the arrangements, including financial arrangements, to secure the services of a technical coordinator;

  5. To set working priorities for the technical coordinator according to the SOT at its regular sessions, and provide further guidance during the intersessional period;

  6. Confer by electronic mail, with a minimum of four EB teleconferences held annually, and at least two of those including the Chairs and vice-Chairs of the SOT Task Teams or their representatives;

  7. To exploit opportunities to confer at other meetings face-to-face;

  8. To conduct regular team meetings biennially, following an agenda developed by the SOT EB;

  9. To consult with SOT members, task team chairpersons, the technical coordinator, and secretariats during the intersessional period as required; and, 

  10. To report its activities to the SOT at its regular session, and throughout the intersessional period as appropriate.


The membership of SOT EB shall be constituted by:

  1. The SOT Chair;

  2. The SOT vice-Chair;

  3. The VOS Panel Chair;

  4. The VOS Panel vice-Chair;

  5. The SOOP Implementation Panel Chair;

  6. The SOOP Implementation Panel vice-Chair;

  7. The SOT Technical Coordinator (ex officio);

  8. A representative from the IOC Secretariat (ex officio);  and,

  9. A representative from the WMO Secretariat (ex officio).

Working procedures

  1. A quorum of the SOT EB will be at least three members, including the SOT Chair or his or her designee, VOS Panel Chair or his or her designee, and SOOP Implementation Panel Chair or his or her designee.

  2. Any SOT member can attend SOT EB meetings as an observer, subject to availability of virtual or actual meeting room space.  If required, the chairperson will make a final decision as to which observers may attend.  The chairperson may also invite other persons to attend at his or her discretion.

  3. A summary of each EB meeting will be made available for the SOT.

  4. The term of SOT EB members is for two years (equal to the intersessional period between SOT meetings).  They shall be eligible for re-election in their respective capacities, but would serve in principle for no more than three consecutive terms in that capacity.  Elections will be decided by a simple majority if a quorum of SOT members is present during the regular biennial meeting.  Nominations for vacant positions on the EB will be made prior to, or at, the meeting so that a vote can be taken at the end of the meeting.

A quorum of a biennial meeting will consist of at least seven SOT members, with one member per WMO Member State/Territory or IOC Member State represented.  If more than one member representing one WMO and/or IOC Member State/Territory is attending, the representatives from that particular State/Territory have to decide whose vote shall be counted.  If a quorum is not present at the meeting, elections shall be by unanimous vote.  If a unanimous vote cannot be achieved, membership shall be determined by the Secretariats.  

e.     In principle, EB membership should assure regional and gender balance as far as possible.

f.     The SOT EB may establish time-bound substructures for the discharge of specific tasks during an intersessional period.  The cost shall not exceed the availability of funds.  Such temporary substructures shall be discontinued at the end of every intersessional period unless agreed to continue by the SOT members at the biennial meeting.

Name Group Role Country FirstName
Name Group Role Country FirstName