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3.2.1 Charter

return to Legal Documents

A charter is a legal document providing basic information about a community of interest (CoI): its location, purpose1), profit status (usually Non-Profit Organization (NPO)), governing board (e.g., board of directors) composition, and stakeholder (or ownership) structure. Sometimes the charter is referred to as the articles of incorporation or a certificate of incorporation. In the case of a for-profit corporation, the articles of incorporation must include the number, classes, and par values of authorized shares. In the United States, most states require the name and address of the company’s registered agent as well. Source: Charters: Creating the Organization

The CoI charter is important because when it is filed and approved by a legal entity, such as a secretary of state, it “gives birth” to a new CoI as a formal corporation. A CoI charter is not the same as the CoI bylaws, which build off the charter and add things like fundamental governing rules, board meeting schedules, conditions of membership, etc.


  1. Charter, as described in this section, only applies to ecosphere CoIs that file for incorporation.
  2. Ecosystem CoIs and domain CoIs are also created using a charter, but these charters are not legal or legally binding documents. Instead they are “subcharters” of, and must be approved by, their parent ecosphere using a process defined in the parent ecosphere's P&P.
  3. The Charter serves as part of the Regulatory Aspect within the Governing Model. See Governing Roles and the Governing Model for more information.

Essential Elements of a Charter

  • Name
  • Address
  • Statement of Purpose
  • Profit Status (Usually Non-Profit Organization (NPO))
  • Agent's Address
  • Number of Shares Authorized
  • The Classes and par value of the shares
  • Roles and Responsibilities
  • Directors


  • The charter ID made specifically for the CoI (i.e., ecosphere).



in the context of a DIDO CoI, think of this as another word for “Goal”, “Mission”, or “Vision”
dido/public/ra/1.3_gov/1_legaldocs/1_charter.txt · Last modified: 2021/10/02 20:12 by
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