ALPSP Code of Conduct

Executive Summary

ALPSP is the international trade association which supports and represents organizations that publish scholarly and professional content. We have nearly 300 member organizations across 30 countries. Our vision is to foster a culture that will strengthen and advance academic and scholarly communications in all its forms. We do this by:

  • Leading and enabling knowledge-sharing across our membership and the wider community;
  • Fostering the creation of international connections through networking and collaboration;
  • Informing and influencing policy and decision-making, advocating for society, not-for-profit and community-led publishing; and
  • Promoting  inclusivity and diversity, removing barriers to participation and increasing transparency.

The Code of Conduct is published by ALPSP Council in accordance with its Bylaws and regulates interactions and activities relating to our vision and values. The Code of Conduct sets out expectations of behaviour that ALPSP requires to be upheld and adhered to, in addition to the process for reporting concerns and investigating complaints.

Our Commitment

All applications for membership to ALPSP are reviewed by ALPSP Council to ensure that they meet the relevant criteria. It is the role of ALPSP Council to determine the terms and conditions of membership of ALPSP, in accordance with ALPSP’s Articles of Association. The Code of Conduct forms part of those terms and conditions from the date above. Many of the principles set out in the Code of Conduct are designed to ensure that individuals are safe and comfortable when interacting with ALPSP and, for that reason, are relevant to those who are not ALPSP members but have contact with ALPSP. As appropriate, the Code of Conduct will therefore apply to such individuals when interacting with ALPSP, including, but not limited to, as volunteers or attendees at meetings, conferences and other similar events, as mentors and mentees participating in the mentorship scheme, and as authors, editors, and editorial board members of ALPSP publications. The Code of Conduct will also apply to all ALPSP employees (including Directors), members of ALPSP Council and third party contractors (including, but not limited to, service providers).

ALPSP is committed to supporting diversity, equality, and inclusivity in all its activities. ALPSP provides a friendly and collegial forum in which to share information and knowledge, discuss the challenges and opportunities facing our industry, and undertake professional development, both virtually and in person. This is achieved via (but is not limited to) conferences, webinars, seminars, podcasts, training courses, networking events, participation in ALPSP Committees, Working Groups, and Judging Panels, participation in the mentorship scheme, ALPSP publications, and community discussion via social media channels (defined within the Code of Conduct as “ALPSP Activities”). We encourage open discussion and debate balanced with respect and consideration. We expect everyone participating in ALPSP Activities to use appropriate language, to respect differences of opinion, and to be inclusive of a diverse range of experiences and perspectives. We follow the Code of Conduct in order to help create a positive, professional, and safe environment for all.

Everyone taking part in ALPSP Activities, whether in person or virtually, is expected to show respect and courtesy to others throughout their participation. In addition, we ask all participants to adhere to the following standards of conduct at all times:

  • All communication should be appropriate for a professional audience which includes people of many different backgrounds. Sexual behaviour, language or imagery is not appropriate nor is language referring to personal qualities, characteristics, or group membership
  • Be kind to others and treat them with dignity. Respect the knowledge, insight, experience, and expertise of fellow participants and be rewarding, open and engaging to work with. Act with integrity and do not bring ALPSP or its staff/members into disrepute. Do not insult or put down other speakers, participants, or ALPSP staff
  • Try and avoid using jargon or slang which may exclude others from engaging in the discussion
  • Make it clear when a statement of opinion (versus fact) is being expressed and strive to be unbiased and truthful, exercising appropriate due diligence
  • Behave objectively and professionally. Exclusionary, intimidatory or disruptive behaviour is not acceptable
  • Harassment (defined in the Equality Act 2010 as unwanted conduct related to a relevant protected characteristic which has the purpose or effect of violating someone’s dignity or creating an intimidating, hostile, degrading, humiliating or offensive environment for them), whether physical, verbal or non-verbal, and bullying will not be tolerated in any form, including but not limited to discrimination based on gender, gender identity, gender reassignment, marital or civil partner status, pregnancy or maternity, sexual orientation, disability, race, colour, age, religion or belief, socio-economic status, education, ethnicity, nationality, neurodiversity, career stage, or any other status protected in law
  • Participants should be willing to confront barriers to diversity and inclusivity and raise poor behaviour when it occurs and should be aware of the concerns of others
  • Feel free to join new groups of people in conversation. When you are in a group, try leaving space for one more person to join you (the PAC-Man rule) as a way of encouraging others and creating a more inclusive environment.

Examples of non-compliance with the Code of Conduct include, but are not limited to:

  • Use of inappropriate language or imagery within a presentation, social media, social, or sponsorship context
  • Inappropriate or unwelcome physical contact
  • Sustained disruption of presentations or discussions
  • Unprofessional communications when participating in ALPSP Activities
  • Advocating for, or encouraging any of the above behaviour

We expect everyone who participates in ALPSP Activities to follow the Code of Conduct, both its letter and spirit before, during, and following participation in ALPSP Activities. This includes, but is not limited to, statements made via social media channels, online forums or publications, and all other forms of electronic communication. In accordance with its Bye-Laws, ALPSP reserves the right not to accept an application for membership and/or to exclude anyone who it considers has failed to comply with any of these principles and guidelines.

ALPSP Council may invoke a disciplinary procedure to suspend or remove membership where minded to do so (which procedure includes, but is not limited to, rights of appeal and a hearing in accordance with the principles of natural justice). Circumstances where this may be invoked include, but are not limited to, where an ALPSP member’s conduct falls short of ALPSP Council’s expectations including, but not limited to, the Code of Conduct.

ALPSP members who continue to be members (including, without limitation, to have paid membership fees) and to meet the membership criteria and terms and conditions may use the ALPSP logo to communicate their ALPSP membership in connection with their member business activities, so long as such use (and any other related content) is not offensive, obscene or derogatory in nature or defamatory of any party. ALPSP reserves the right to require a member to stop using the ALPSP logo following an ALPSP Council decision to that effect.

Reporting Concerns

If any person believes they have been subject to bullying, harassment and/or discrimination as part of any ALPSP Activities, or considers that someone else is being harassed or discriminated against during such activities, they should contact the ALPSP Chief Executive, Wayne Sime (, ALPSP Staff or a member of ALPSP Council, as soon as possible. Any complaint will be investigated promptly and respectfully. Conference, event, meeting, or committee participants asked to stop any harassment or discriminatory behaviour must comply immediately. ALPSP and/or the event organisers retain the right to take any action that they consider necessary, including, but not limited to, expulsion from that conference, event, meeting, or committee with no refund and/or refusal to allow registrations to future events.

The process for the investigation of complaints is as follows. The process has been created to ensure that everyone is treated in a consistent, fair and reasonable way and in accordance with the Articles of Association and Bye-Laws of ALPSP:

  • A formal complaint should be provided in writing.
  • ALPSP staff will first discuss the details with the individual reporting the concern, followed by a discussion with the individual(s) referenced in the complaint. The outcomes of these discussions will be reported to the Directors. ALPSP will endeavour to keep the complainant’s identity confidential throughout the process but this may not always be practicable.
  • If an individual is in breach of the Code of Conduct, ALPSP reserves the right to take any action it deems appropriate. This may include:
    • The issuance of a warning to the offending individual
    • Expulsion from ALPSP Activities and/or ALPSP Membership with no refund
    • Imposing a temporary or permanent ban on an individual’s participation in future ALPSP Activities and/or ALPSP Membership
    • Reporting the complaint to the individual’s employer
  • ALPSP will notify the individual reporting the concern of the outcome of the investigation and any action taken
  • In the event an individual is dissatisfied with the process, they should contact the ALPSP Chief Executive.

The Code of Conduct may be revised at any time by ALPSP and the terms are non-negotiable. Your membership of ALPSP, registration for and attendance at, or participation in any ALPSP Activities indicates your agreement to abide by the Code of Conduct and all its terms.

If you have any questions or concerns regarding the Code of Conduct, please contact the ALPSP Chief Executive, Wayne Sime (


Version dated 2 February 2021

Sources include: UKSG Code of Conduct (;
FORCE 11 CofC (CC0)