Articles of Association

Contents

Definitions

Foundation

Definition and Goals

Specialised Units

Programs

Offices and Networks

 Finance

Management and Employees

Centre Regulations

Harmoon Centre for Contemporary Studies

Harmoon Centre for Contemporary Studies is an independent, non-profit, research, cultural and media institution. Its main focus is to conduct studies and researches about the Arab region, especially Syria. It also works towards cultural and media development, enhancing the civil society performance, and spreading democratic awareness and values of dialogue, as well as respect for human rights. The Centre also provides consultation and training services in political and media fields to all Syrians on the basis of Syrian national identity.

To achieve its objectives, the Centre conducts its activities through five specialized units, (1) Policy Studies Unit, (2) Social Researches Unit, (3) Books Review Unit, (4) Translation and Arabization Unit, (5) Legal Studies Unit.

A set of action programs are also adopted, such as the Political Consultations and Initiatives Program; Program for Services, Media Campaigns, and Public Opinion Making; Program for Dialogue Support and Civil and Cultural Development; Syria Future Programme. The Centre may add new programs depending on the actual needs of Syria and the region. In implementing its programs, the Centre deploys multiple mechanisms, including lectures, workshops, seminars, conferences, training courses, as well as paper and electronic press.

Website: www.harmoon.org

Email: info@harmoon.org

Tel: +974 44885996

Doha, Qatar

Article 1: Definitions

The following terms shall have the meanings ascribed to each of them:

  • Harmoon Centre: Harmoon Centre for Contemporary Studies.
  • Articles of Association: The Articles of Association of Harmoon Centre for Contemporary Studies.
  • Board of Trustees: A board consisting of a group of figures with specific responsibilities stipulated for in this Articles of Association.
  • Director General: The person in charge of managing and representing the centre before others, and whose responsibilities are stipulated for in this Articles of Association.
  • Programme: Any of the programmes launched and run by the Centre to achieve one of its bigger goals.
  • Branches: Branches opened by the Centre to execute its programmes, and legally registered in the hosting country.
  • Centre Office: An office opened by the Centre in whatever city to facilitate the execution of its business, and it may be a power of attorney to an existing office.
  • Centre Network: A group of individuals working with the Centre constantly or occasionally to execute its programs in any city or country.

Article 2: Foundation

Harmoon Centre headquarters will be in Damascus. It will be established in accordance with the civil societies and foundations law to be drafted in the new Syria. However, due to the current circumstances, Harmoon Centre for Contemporary Studies will establish several temporary branches outside Syria.

Pursuant to the present Articles of Association, and in accordance with the Qatari Commercial Companies Law and its subsequent or future amendments, Harmoon Centre is established as “a limited liability company” and shall be subject to the commercial norms, the present Articles of Association and the present and future provisions of the Qatari Law. Unless there is contradiction with the items of this Articles of Association, the “company” shall be also be subject to the elective provisions stipulated for in the above mentioned law. The Centre will have a main branch in Gaziantep, Turkey, to be established in accordance with the Turkish Law on Foundations and Civil Society Organizations, and another branch in Berlin, Germany, to be established in accordance with the effective law for licensing centres and civil organizations.

Article 3: Definition and Goals

Harmoon Centre for Contemporary Studies is an independent, non-profit, research, cultural and media institution. Its main focus is to conduct studies and researches about the Arab region, especially Syria. It also works towards cultural and media development, enhancing the civil society performance, and spreading democratic awareness and values of dialogue, as well as respect for human rights. The Centre also provides consultation and training services in political and media fields to all Syrians on the basis of Syrian national identity.

To achieve its objectives, the Centre shall conduct its activities through five specialized units, (1) Policy Studies Unit, (2) Social Researches Unit, (3) Books Review Unit, (4) Translation and Arabization Unit, (5) Legal Studies Unit.

A set of action programs are also adopted, such as the Political Consultations and Initiatives Program; Program for Services, Media Campaigns, and Public Opinion Making; Program for Dialogue Support and Civil and Cultural Development; Syria Future Programme; Programme for monitoring and documentation. The Centre may add new programs depending on the actual needs of Syria and the region. In implementing its programs, the Centre deploys multiple mechanisms, including lectures, workshops, seminars, conferences, training courses, as well as paper and electronic press.

Article 4: Specialised Units

The Centre shall have five specialised units. Members of the units shall work inside the various Centre branches, with some members working outside them. The Units will welcome the productions of non-centre staff but based on the rigorous criteria provided for in the Publishing Policy and Conditions. These units are:

  1. Policy Studies Unit: This unit shall carry out studies, analysis and political articles which match the status quo. It may accept contributions from outside the Centre to be published under the names of their authors in case they met the Centre’s set criteria, irrespective of their opinions.
  1. Social Researches Unit: This unit shall be responsible for producing research materials according to an original and discreet methodology which follows research fundamentals. It shall also be responsible for assigning non-centre researchers to produce a number of studies and researches according to the Centre’s action plan, and to also supervise the researches the Centre receives without assignment.
  1. Books Review Unit: This unit shall be responsible for choosing books and producing critical and analytical readings thereof. It may accept reviews from outside the Centre in case they correspond to the Centre’s selection and analysis criteria.
  2. Translation and Arabization Unit: This unit shall be responsible for translating the Centre’s productions into other languages as the Centre deems fit. Additionally, it shall arabicize any researches, studies, or important articles from other languages.
  1. Legal Studies Unit: This unit shall be responsible for providing legal interpretations of some current events. It shall also produce legal studies and proposals with a view to rebuilding the legal system in the future Syria.

Article 5: Programs

In order to achieve its goals, the Centre launches a number of specialised quality programs, each of which shall have a manager, staff, network, agenda and sub-budget.

The Centre may execute the programs according to its priorities and available funding, and may also modify each program’s agenda and field, add to it or restructure it in light of developments and practice at the time.

  1. Political Consultations and Initiatives Programme
  • Based on its analysis of the national, regional and international politics, as well as the Syrian national interests, the Centre shall present political proposals and recommendations for Syrian political circles and in their various fields, such as drafting documents, programs, plans, statements, and political and media discourse.
  • The program shall launch and promote basic political projects and initiatives related to the Syrian situation.
  • The program shall propose diverse projects and initiatives to Syrian political forces with a view to promote their political activity and structural efficiency and making them more capable of contributing to building the future of Syria.
  1. Program for Services, Media Campaigns, and Public Opinion Making
  • The program shall set an information-based political media in accordance with scientific media rules, in order to deliver the right messages and achieve the aspired effect on the target audience. It shall also provide mass media and social media with professional analyses and media reports about the Syrian situation and its regional, Arab, and international connections.
  • A Media program shall be coined targeting the international community, including the European, American and Russian communities. It shall provide data and objective analysis of the Syrian situation, send clear definite messages on fundamental issues, and establish collaborative relations with journalists, research and studies centres, intellectuals, politicians and artists around the world.
  • The program shall launch media campaigns on particular issues with a view to form a Syrian public opinion about them, by using the various communication networks and in collaboration with other centres and media groups.
  1. Programme for Dialogue Support and Civil and Cultural Development

The Centre shall launch a continuous dialogue program on current and future Syrian issues. The program shall consist of sub-programs:

  • Al-Kawakibi Salon: A platform for dialogue between the Islamic current and other currents with a view to find commonality that can serve as a basis for collaboration to build the future of Syria.
  • Hanano Salon: A forum for intellectual and political dialogue on the Kurdish issue in Syria.
  • Dialogue Forums: They aim to conduct an intellectual-political dialogue on important Syrian issues, especially among the Syrian youth; nationality, democracy, the Syrian State, foreign affairs in future Syria, dialogue between politicians and the military institution, etc., including:

Barada Forum in Doha

Euphrates/ Al Furat Forum in Turkey

Orontes/ Al Asi Forum in Europe/Germany

Some of the forums’ sessions may be conducted online, and their officers shall set their programs and agendas.

  • Seminars: Sessions which will invite Arab and international intellectual and political figures, who are capable of leading the public opinion in their respective countries.
  1. Future of Syria Programme
  • The program shall build a special database for patriotic Syrian experts in every field as a projection of their work in public agencies and institutions in the future, such as ministries, local administration, judiciary, army, and civil society institutions.
  • It shall also provide applicable studies and action plans on the social and political problems Syria might encounter during or after the transitional period, identify remedial steps that would help rebuild Syria (violence effects, prevalence of arms, rehabilitate fighters and integrate them into the civil life, child education, youth employment, among others).
  • It shall further conduct studies concerning the relaunching of Syrian economy and rebuilding the country, including studies on the micro economic sectors so as to meet the various Syrian needs in commodities and services production, as well as job opportunities creation, and help rebuild the national economy.

Article 6: Branches, Offices and Networks

The Centre shall open external branches as per its management estimates, the need for executing its goals and programs, and the existence of a considerable Syrian community in the hosting country. Such a branch shall be registered as per the local effective laws and regulations. Each branch shall have its own staff, agenda and budget.

  • The Centre shall have its headquarters in Doha, Qatar, and shall have one branch in Gaziantep, Turkey, and another office in Berlin, Germany.
  • The Centre shall build a network of specialists in research and media inside Syria, refugee camps, hosting countries with large numbers of Syrians, as well as in influential capitals around the world.

Article 7: Finance

  • The Centre is a non-profit organisation working for the public good.
  • The Centre shall have an annual budget funded by Syrian, Arab, and international donors, who shall have no effect whatsoever on its decision making and goals. All available funds shall be spent to perform the Centre’s purposes and goals, and according to financial and accounting system to be drafted for this end.
  • The board of trustees shall prepare an annual financial plan in the form of percentages distributed to the Centre’s programs and activities. The Director General shall be responsible for preparing a draft detailed budget.
  • The Centre’s fiscal year shall start on 01 January and end on 31 December of every year. As an exception, the first fiscal year shall start as of the Centre’s start date and end on 31 December of the same year.
  • The Centre shall keep a double entry accounting.
  • The Centre shall duly assign a legal auditing firm to revise its annual budget. The firm shall issue its report in accordance with established procedures as well as the effective local legislations of the centre branches’ hosting countries.
  • The Director General shall, during the first three months of every fiscal year, prepare a report on the previous fiscal year, together with a copy of the relevant budget duly prepared in accordance with established accounting procedures, a copy of the auditing report, and an assets inventory.
  • The Director General shall send the budget and accounts, together with the supporting documents, to the auditors at least thirty days before the next meeting of the Board of Trustees.
  • All books, records and documents shall be kept for the period of five years.

Article 8: Management and Employees

The Centre’s administrative structure shall be composed as follows:

  • Board of Trustees

It shall consist of a number of Syrian figures, and shall at least meet once a year by invitation from the Director General. It shall discuss the Centre’s general action plan and annual budget, and shall approve the budget of the previous financial year, and propose any suggestions or recommendations it deems fit for the management of the Centre.

  • Director General

He shall run the Centre, represent it before the public authorities and others, and sign on its behalf. He shall enjoy wide powers to implement the Centre’s policy as well as the proposals and recommendations of the Board of Trustees, and run all activities except those explicitly entrusted to the Board of Trustees. He shall also conclude all the Centre’s obligations; set up all operational procedures and permit their implementation; open the Centre’s bank accounts and empower others to manage them; invite the managers (the executive manager, branch managers, office managers, and program managers) to meet and run the meetings; invite the Board of Trustees to meet at the Centre’s headquarter at least once a year, and prepare the meeting’s agenda as well as the topics proposed for discussion and approval. He shall further organize the business of the branches and offices; hire and release employees and determine their powers, salaries, benefits and gratuities, as well as the terms of hiring and termination. The above are but a few powers granted to the Director General; his authority shall be limitless but shall be subject to the provisions of public laws and this Articles of Association.

The Director General shall have the right to temporarily or permanently delegate part of his duties and powers to whomever he deems fit in accordance with the ‎exigencies of work, and shall make sure the Centre is only conducting the activities stipulated for in this Articles of Association and in accordance with its internal policies.

  • Executive Director

The Director General shall name an executive director to run the daily activities of the Centre. The Executive Director shall be the line manager of all employees, and shall report to the Director General.

  • Executive Committee

The Director General shall form a committee which shall consist of the Executive Manager, branch managers, specialised units’ managers, and program managers. This committee shall manage the Centre’s executive matters, and shall meet once per month at least, and the Director General shall preside its meetings. It shall also discuss the Centre’s course of action, prepare the Centre’s budget and sub-budgets, as well as the annual reports which will be discussed by the Board of Trustees.

  • Branch Managers

Branch Managers shall be appointed by decision of the Director General. He shall run his branch in accordance with the Centre’s effective regulations, the provisions of his appointment decision, and the management directions. He shall have financial and administrative powers as per the authorities entrusted to him by the Director General.

  • Managers of Specialised Units and Programs

Each specialised unit and program shall have its own manager who shall have good experience with relevance to the Centre’s activities, and shall report to the Director General.

  • Office Manager

The office manager shall be appointed by decision of the Director General who shall determine his roles and powers. The office manager shall run the office in accordance with the Centre’s effective regulations and the management directions.

  • Public Relations and Secretary

Activities in both fields are meant to help facilitate the implementation of the management directions as well as the Centre’s various activities.

  • Collaborative Networks

They are working groups consisting of researchers, journalists, experts and intellectuals who collaborate with the Centre in the implementation of its programs and activities in various countries and cities around the world.

Article 9: Centre Regulations

The Centre’s management shall, in accordance with the Centre’s needs, set internal regulations which shall be flexible enough to help the successful implementation of activities, and shall be developed in line with the Centre’s growth:

  • Financial System: It shall identify the rules of receivables and payments, as well as the keeping of the Centre’s funds, among other issues.
  • Accounting System: It shall control the Centre revenues and expenditures record in a clear, accurate and transparent manner.
  • Labour Discipline: It shall organize the foundations of the employees’ activities, salaries, wages, compensations, etc.
  • Administrative Affairs System: It shall organize the management of the Centre, branches and offices activities, including license registration and renewals. It shall also take care of the branches and offices’ affairs, assets, employees’ residence permits, and any other assignments.
  • Legal Affairs: The Centre shall conclude a contract with a law firm to seek advice on the bylaws regulating the activities of the Centre’s headquarters, branches and offices.