GOVERN for IMPACT “Professional Designation”
- Building the Governance Professional -
GOVERN for IMPACT is introducing a professional designation in June 2019. The professional designation, Governance Systems Professional (“GSP” or “the designation”), has been created by GOVERN for IMPACT to recognize individuals who have completed the Policy Governance® Proficiency Program (PGP) or who have participated in the Policy Governance Academy and passed the PGP final exam.
- Individuals who wish to use the designation must meet the following obligations:
- Maintain an affiliation with GOVERN for IMPACT in the Fellow/GSP category,
- Commit to the standards of professional conduct identified in the Code of Ethics, and
- Achieve the required number of professional development credits on an ongoing basis.
Implementing the Use of the Professional Designation
As of June 2019, the following are in place:
1. Anyone who has successfully completed the PGP program, has a current affiliation with GOVERN, and has declared their intention to use the professional designation and signed the Code of Professional Conduct can use the designation after their name, e.g. Mary Ferguson GSP.
2. An Academy participant who has also passed the PGP exam, has a current affiliation with GOVERN, and has declared their intention to use the professional designation and signed the Code of Professional Conduct can use the designation after their name, e.g. Mary Ferguson GSP.
3. An Academy participant who has not yet passed the PGP exam, who has a current affiliation with GOVERN and has declared their intention to use the professional designation and signed the Code of Professional Conduct can use the designation after their name, e.g. Mary Ferguson GSP until June 2020, after which time the person is required to have passed the PGP exam.
4. Between June 2019 and June 2020, the PGP exam schedule for Academy participants will be communicated to all those who have signed up for the grandparent program but who yet to take the exam and also to the full list of Academy participants.
5. After June 2020, any Academy participants may take the PGP exam at the same time as the final PGP exam. If an Academy participant wishes to schedule a specific time, they can do so by submitting a request for a specific date along with the required fee. This fee is in addition to the fee for the application for the grandparent program.
6. Anyone choosing to use the designation must declare their intent to do so. Individuals using the designation will maintained on a list of professional designates with their anniversary date. There is no fee to declare the intention to use the designation.
7. Use of the designation is valid for a three year period. At the end of three years, individuals must renew their declared intent to use the designation. There is a renewal fee of $175.
Using the Fellow Designation
Fellow affiliation is only open to those who are using the professional designation. Individuals who use the professional designation (GSP) after their name may also wish to use the “Fellow” designation because it has a recognized professional gravitas in their community or domain. Others may want to use the Fellow designation to signify an elevated level of commitment to the advancement of excellence in governance. The Fellow designation is used in the following manner: GOVERN Fellow, Mary Ferguson GSP.
As GOVERN affiliates renew at their regular renewal period, in order to continue to use the GOVERN Fellow, GSP designation affiliates will need to register in the Fellow Affiliate category.
1. By June 2020 at the latest, the Professional Development requirement will be introduced. The required number of credits to be accumulated over a three year period will be published along with the list of activities for which credit can be claimed. Professional Development will be an honour based system and credits will be self-reported. GOVERN will reserve the right to audit any person.
2. Anyone who declares their intention to use the professional designation in June 2019 will have until June 2022 to complete the required number of credits. Once the system for tracking Professional Development credits is in place any credits achieved from June 2019 can be claimed.
3. Those who begin using the designation after June 2019 will have three years from the date they declare their intention to complete the required Professional Development.
4. A person must renew their intention to use designation every three years. Renewal is granted if the person maintains a Fellow Affiliation with GOVERN for IMPACT, has accumulated the required Professional Development credits, and submits a commitment to abide by the Code of Professional Conduct. The declaration to renew must be accompanied by the required renewal fee.
Relationship between the PGP program and the Designation
The PGP program is an assessment based certificate program. Participants who successfully complete the program can cite this achievement without meeting any other conditions. For example, this could appear in a resume in the same way that individuals identify they have attended the Policy Governance AcademySM. An individual can cite successful completion of the PGP for as long as they choose.
When the establishment of a professional designation was first conceived, it was thought that “PGP” might be that designation. With the transition in name to GOVERN for IMPACT, the designation, “Governance Systems Professional (GSP)” was seen as a more logical extension of the organization’s broadened vision and the hoped-for leadership role of individuals.
Affiliation with GOVERN
GOVERN is no longer a membership organization. It encourages those who share the organization’s vision of worldwide excellence in board governance across sectors to annually affiliate with the organization. Fees to affiliate vary depending on the category of affiliation that a person chooses.
The decision to require ongoing affiliation as an obligation of using the professional designation has been subject to extensive deliberation. There appear to be two common models for professional organizations. In one, individuals who hold their profession’s designation are required to register annually and pay an annual fee as well as complete a specified level of continuing education. In the second model, individuals who have achieved a professional designation are also required to complete a specified level of continuing education but are not required to be members or registrants with the professional association. Both are legitimate models. We chose the path of requiring those using the designation to also maintain an affiliation with GOVERN, as the organization granting the designation. We reasoned that it is both logical and preferable that those using the designation have a formal connection with the organization that grants the designation and is advancing the need for competent governance practitioners as represented by the designation. Without affiliation, GOVERN as the organization responsible to administer the designation and enforce as necessary compliance with the code of ethics has minimal leverage in its oversight.
This is an exciting opportunity for all people interested in enhancing your role as a governance practitioner/professional. Please let us know if you have any questions by contacting: