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Robert's Rules outside of U.S.


Guest Crystal

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Hi~

I am compiling a chapter handbook with a component dedicated to providing guidance in leading their members. While the majority of our chapters are domestic, the association is expanding internationally and expect to have at least 3 international chapters within 3 months. With that I'm just wondering if Robert's Rules is something that is widely accepted outside of the US. If I make reference to these guidelines, will it resonate with the international chapters or will it be more non-applicable for them?

Thanks for any help you can provide.

Best,

Crystal

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I am compiling a chapter handbook with a component dedicated to providing guidance in leading their members. While the majority of our chapters are domestic, the association is expanding internationally and expect to have at least 3 international chapters within 3 months. With that I'm just wondering if Robert's Rules is something that is widely accepted outside of the US. If I make reference to these guidelines, will it resonate with the international chapters or will it be more non-applicable for them?

Thanks for any help you can provide.

I don't see why RONR wouldn't work just as well outside of the US as in it.

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Any English-speaking organization can profit by adopting RONR as its parliamentary authority.

Can they only be English-speaking? Couldn't they speak any language, as long as they understand the rules and guidelines set forth in RONR and follow them as if The Book had been translated into Le Livre, or El Libro, or even на книгата? Or is there a footnote on page LVXI that I missed along the way?

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Hi~

I am compiling a chapter handbook with a component dedicated to providing guidance in leading their members. While the majority of our chapters are domestic, the association is expanding internationally and expect to have at least 3 international chapters within 3 months. With that I'm just wondering if Robert's Rules is something that is widely accepted outside of the US. If I make reference to these guidelines, will it resonate with the international chapters or will it be more non-applicable for them?

Thanks for any help you can provide.

Best,

Crystal

General Robert used the English/American traditions and practices as his starting point. Whether that is an appropriate basis for other cultures and/or traditions cannot be said with certainty. Some might adopt it quite comfortably; others might consider it a form of "American cultural imperialism". Why not leave this matter up to each individual chapter?

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Can they only be English-speaking? Couldn't they speak any language, as long as they understand the rules and guidelines set forth in RONR and follow them as if The Book had been translated into Le Livre, or El Libro, or even на книгата?

Well, they can certainly speak languages in addition to English but if they don't understand English, they can't "understand the rules and guidelines set forth in RONR".

Consider how much discussion takes place here on, for example, a weak "should" vs. a strong "should". So much hangs on the particular meaning of a particular word that, while the book could certainly be translated, it would be a different book with, perhaps, different subtleties in the meanings of some words.

The whole point of adopting a parliamentary authority is that there will be a commonly-accepted set of rules. In a commonly-accepted language.

I recommend this recent article from the NY Times, "Does Your Language Shape How You Think?".

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Well, they can certainly speak languages in addition to English but if they don't understand English, they can't "understand the rules and guidelines set forth in RONR".

Consider how much discussion takes place here on, for example, a weak "should" vs. a strong "should". So much hangs on the particular meaning of a particular word that, while the book could certainly be translated, it would be a different book with, perhaps, different subtleties in the meanings of some words.

The whole point of adopting a parliamentary authority is that there will be a commonly-accepted set of rules. In a commonly-accepted language.

I recommend this recent article from the NY Times, "Does Your Language Shape How You Think?".

Couldn't help but think of Guugu Yimithirr speakers....

"You put your north foot in

You put your north foot out

You put your north foot in

and you shake it west and east

You do the Hokey Pokey and you

Rotate yourself 360 degrees counter clockwise

That's what it's all about."

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Can they only be English-speaking? Couldn't they speak any language, as long as they understand the rules and guidelines set forth in RONR and follow them as if The Book had been translated into Le Livre, or El Libro, or even на книгата? Or is there a footnote on page LVXI that I missed along the way?

Any assembly is free to adopt RONR as its parliamentary authority, but non-English speakers will encounter some practical difficulties, as I am not aware of any official translations of RONR into other languages. Based on Mr. Mountcastle's apt comments, it seems clear that such a translation would be an extremely difficult task. I also agree with Mr. Elsman that it's important to consider differences beyond just the language barrier.

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Being parliamentarian for a very diverse international organization in Tokyo, it works but be ready to bend and to explain. So far I have worked with an American president, a Bengali president, and a Swiss president with a wide variety of members. Yes, I have to make cultural adaptations in explaining. Most are happy with having a set of rules that are not arbitrary.

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Most are happy with having a set of rules that are not arbitrary.

Although one could argue that many of the rules are arbitrary (however much they seem to make sense). For example, two-thirds is a somewhat arbitrary fraction. It could just as well have been three-fourths (halfway between a majority and a unanimous vote). The value lies in having a set of rules that [a] everyone agrees on, have evolved slowly over a long period of time, and [c] are in wide-spread use.

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