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International Association of

Botanical and Mycological Societies

International Association of Botanical and Mycological Societies

International Botanical Congress

-Code of Conduct-

Adopted 1st June, 2022



  • To guide all participants in International Botanical Congress (IBC) events, on the standards of conduct required.

  • To define breaches of conduct and describe the consequences of breaches of conduct.

  • To bring together all relevant policy principles, and provide a working guide on expected conduct for IBC events.



The primary responsibility of the IABMS is to ensure the continuance and success of the International Botanical Congress series. With this responsibility in mind, IABMS has adopted this Code of Conduct for the International Botanical Congresses. This Code of Conduct seeks to create a welcoming culture and atmosphere at the Congresses that provides an inclusive and productive environment, fosters open dialogue and exchange of ideas, is free from harassment and discrimination, and where everyone feels safe all the time. This Code of Conduct also ensures that Congress participants are treated fairly and equitably.



This Code of Conduct applies to all participants of the International Botanical Congresses and any other IABMS-arranged activities.


Key Principles

All individuals associated with the International Botanical Congresses are expected to act legally, honestly, ethically, professionally, respectfully, and in good faith at all times, in alignment with our shared values and in a manner that protects the best interests and good reputation of the International Botanical Congresses in all activities.


IBC participants must

  • Take care and responsibility to uphold the reputation of the International Botanical Congresses and not engage in activities that could bring them into disrepute.

  • Interact with all persons in a fair, polite, and open manner without discrimination.

  • Be considerate of everyone’s privacy and human rights.

  • Treat others with respect and behave in a courteous, professional and collegial manner.

  • Recognise that IABMS and IBC organizers and sponsors do not tolerate any form of bullying, harassment or discrimination; avoid behaviours that may be perceived by others as bullying, harassment or discrimination.

  • Comply with all relevant professional codes of ethics.



Past experience has been that the great majority of IBC participants conduct themselves reasonably. Minor problems can usually be solved without the need for formal discipline. Initially, problems are handled with the expectation that everyone will do their best to resolve an issue once it is reported and that some difficulties can be dealt with informally. However, formal disciplinary action will be undertaken if necessary where breaches of conduct occur.


Unacceptable and reportable behaviour includes (but is not limited to):

  • Intimidating, harassing, abusive, discriminatory, derogatory or demeaning speech or actions

  • Verbal or written comments or images with harmful or prejudicial content related to gender, sexual orientation, race, ethnicity, nationality, political affiliation, religion, disability, age, appearance, or other personal characteristics

  • Inappropriate or gratuitous use of nudity, sexual images, or stereotyped images in public spaces

  • Intimidation, stalking or following (including online)

  • Loud outbursts or sustained disruption of talks or at other events

  • Unwelcome and uninvited attention or physical contact, including touch or groping

  • The real or implied threat of physical harm

  • The real or implied threat of professional or financial damage or harm

  • Being impaired by alcohol or non-prescription drugs while at IBC-sponsored events.

  • Breaching relevant professional codes of ethics

  • Retaliation for reporting misconduct

  • Any communications (including on social media) that could be perceived as shaming or threatening someone for any reason including reporting misconduct

  • Falsely reporting misconduct


IABMS and the IBC organizers reserve the right to enforce this code of conduct in any manner deemed appropriate. Anyone violating this code of conduct may be:

  • Warned to cease the unacceptable behaviour and that any reports of further misconduct will result in more serious sanctions

  • Expelled from the Congress

  • Prohibited from attending future meetings indefinitely or for a given period of time


Other sanctions might also be imposed as the IABMS officers and IBC organizers see fit.


Reporting a Code Violation

If you are being subjected to, or notice that someone else is being subjected to behaviour that violates this Code of Conduct, please contact one or more of the following individuals: IABMS Chair or Secretary or IBC President or Secretary General. All complaints will be treated seriously and responded to promptly. Details about the complaint and the processing of the complaint will be kept confidential.


If possible, provide the following information, preferably in writing with as many details as possible:

  • Identifying information about the participant/s involved in the incident or breach

  • The behaviour that was in violation of this Code

  • The approximate time and place of the incident or breach

  • The circumstances surrounding the incident or breach

  • Other people involved in or who witnessed the incident or breach


Process for Investigating a Code Violation

After a code violation has been reported an independent Code of Conduct Committee will be appointed to investigate whether the behaviour was in violation of this Code. The investigation may include interviewing potential witnesses to the behaviour and others who might have important information. The Code of Conduct Committee will provide a report to the IABMS Chair and IBC President with an assessment of whether the reported behaviour or actions are a breach of this Code of Conduct. The IABMS Chair and IBC President will evaluate the report and develop recommendations for actions to be taken. The report and the recommendations will be sent to the other officers for discussion, including the opportunity to raise alternative recommendations for actions and a final vote. The officers will convey their findings and vote to the individual/s accused of violating the Code of Conduct, to anyone involved in imposing sanctions, to the person(s) who filed the complaint, and to any other person(s) who directly experienced the inappropriate behaviour (if applicable). The final decision will be available to anyone who inquires about it, to increase transparency and to show that the Code was followed by IABMS.


Addressing Grievances

If you feel you have been falsely or unfairly accused of violating this Code of Conduct you should notify the IABMS Chair or Secretary or IBC President or Secretary General with a concise description of your grievance. Your grievance will be handled promptly by the same process outlined above.


Patrick Herendeen, IABMS Chair (

Jiri Kvacek, IABMS Secretary (

Gonzalo Nieto Feliner, IBC Madrid President (

A. Marcial Escudero, IBC Madrid Secretary-General (

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