Title I - Constitution and Aims
The Pontifical Academy of Social Sciences was established by the Holy Father John Paul II on 1 January 1994 (AAS 86 , 213), with the aim of promoting the study and progress of the social sciences, primarily economics, sociology, law and political science. The Academy, through an appropriate dialogue, thus offers the Church the elements which she can use in the development of her social doctrine, and reflects on the application of that doctrine in contemporary society. The Academy, which is autonomous, maintains a close relationship with the Pontifical Council for Justice and Peace.1
To achieve its aims the Academy:
- organizes congresses and study days on specific themes;
- promotes scientific surveys and research;
- helps and assists institutions and private individuals to execute them; - publishes the results of its own consultations;
- issues publications of a scientific nature
Title II - Regulations
The Academy is made up of no less than twenty and no more than forty Ordinary Academicians and of Honorary Academicians. Upon reaching 80 years of age, Ordinary Academicians quit their task and, following a proposal by the Council of the Academy, can be appointed Honorary Pontifical Academicians by the Holy Father. Academicians are appointed by the Holy Father on the basis of their competencies in the social sciences and of their moral integrity (approved by the Holy Father on 26 June 2003).
To appoint new Academicians, candidates are proposed to the President by at least two members. Appropriate attention should be given to ensuring suitable representation of the various disciplines of the social sciences and the various geographical regions. The Council of the Academy presents to the Academy a list of candidates for each vacancy. The Assembly takes a secret vote to indicate the order of preference in which the candidates are to be proposed to the Supreme Pontiff.2
Academicians are appointed for a term of ten years and can be reappointed directly by the Supreme Pontiff after consulting the President and the Council of the Academy. Academicians may also resign.
Academicians take part in the sessions, at which they make communications or present papers and scientific memoranda; they hold debates and vote on motions; they have the right to propose candidates for nominations and subjects for work.
Well-known experts in the social sciences or in the economic, social and political world will sometimes be invited to participate in individual sessions of the Academy.
The direction and government of the Academy will be the task of the President, with the assistance of the Council of the Academy.
The President is nominated by the Supreme Pontiff, to whom he reports directly. The President remains in office for five years and his mandate may be renewed. He is directly assisted by the Chancellor, who is nominated by the Supreme Pontiff.
The President represents the Academy and directs its progress. He is responsible to the Supreme Pontiff and maintains contact with the Pontifical Council for Justice and Peace.3 He convokes and chairs the Council of the Academy as well as the sessions, and implements the Council's decisions.
The President can choose a substitute among the other Academicians who are members of the Council to preside at the sessions. The President may delegate one or more Academicians to represent the Academy, when and in the manner he deems fit.
The Council of the Academy consists of the President and five Academicians appointed by the Supreme Pontiff, on the proposal of the President, after consultation with the Academicians. Their term of office lasts five years. They may be reappointed.
In addition the following are members of the Council durante munere:
- the Chancellor appointed by the Supreme Pontiff;4
- the Delegate of the Pontifical Council for Justice and Peace;5
- the President of the Foundation for the Promotion of the Social Sciences.6
These three members attend the sessions of the Academy with the right to vote. The Council assists the President in everything concerning the direction of the Academy, especially in planning the work and preparing the meetings; it receives the reports on the financial resources.
The deliberations of the Academy and its Council are valid when a majority of the members are present and when they are approved by a majority of those present. In the case of parity the vote of the President prevails.
All the other norms concerning the activities of the Academy are determined by the Academy's internal Regulations.
Title III - Scientific Activities and Incentives for Research
The Academy undertakes directly or promotes work and research in the area of the various social sciences.
With the objective of encouraging scientific study with regard to topics of particular interest, the Academy may institute prizes, promote competitions, establish internal committees and commissions for the study of specific issues, regarding which the Internal Regulations establish the number, value, duration and method.
The Academy is responsible for the publication of the Acts and Annals.
The Acts are published in regular issues and their frequency is determined by the Internal Regulations. They contain the minutes of the sessions, communications and scientific notes, a list of publications received and a bulletin of the Academy's proceedings.
The Annals have no time limit for publication; they include scientific articles accepted by the Academy, and works for which prizes have been awarded.
Title IV - Financial Means
The Academy receives financial support from a special "Foundation for the Promotion of the Social Sciences",7 from contributions of the Holy See and from donations and gifts.
The Statutes of the Foundation and their possible modifications must be communicated to the Holy See.
The Holy See appoints its own representative to the Foundation's Council, whose task is to communicate its opinion and decisions in accordance with Art. 7 of the Statutes of the Foundation.8
The Pontifical Academy of Sciences and the Pontifical Academy of Social Sciences have both their legal headquarters and their secretariats in the Casina Pio IV and the same Chancellor is appointed to both.9
The legal status and the financial remuneration of the staff of each category as well as the norms for the functioning of the Chancery are established by the Internal Regulations.
The President in collaboration with the President of the special Foundation10 will draft an annual report of the financial resources available to the Academy for its activities.
Title V - Final and Transitional Provisions
The President, after consulting the Council, will present to the Secretary of State for approval the Internal Regulations which contain besides the norms to which the present Statutes refer supplementary directives concerning the organization and functioning of the Academy.
Possible modifications of these Statutes must be submitted to the Supreme Pontiff for approval.
The present Statutes were approved by the Holy Father St John Paul II on 25 May 1998.
Angelo Card. Sodano, Secretary of State
with subsequent additions by the Holy Father Francis,
communicated by Pietro Card. Parolin, Secretary of State, on 6 May 2021.
1 Currently, Dicastery for Integral Human Development.
2 On 6 May 2021 the Holy Father Francis added that he can appoint, if necessary, a Vice Chancellor with specific competencies.
3 Cfr. footnote 1.
4 On 6 May 2021 the Holy Father Francis added that the Vice Chancellor, if there is one, also becomes a member of the Council durante munere.
5 Cfr. footnote 1.
6 Cfr. footnote 7.
7 The Foundation for the Promotion of the Social Sciences was dissolved on 14 December 2017 following the death of its President.
8 Cfr. footnote 7.
9 The Holy Father Francis added “and the same Vice Chancellor are”.
10 Cfr. footnote 7.