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Membership Structure

Official logo of the ESAThe Ecological Society of America’s 9,000 members are organized into geographic chapters and sections based on areas of mutual interest or personal affinity. Every member who joins the Society can select one chapter or section for free, and join additional ones for $5 each. The elected chair of each of these bodies is part of the ESA Council, a governing body that meets every year at the Annual Meeting to discuss ESA business.


ESA’s chapters are the geographical framework of the membership. Chapters receive an annual budget based on their number of members, and use those budgets for business meetings and participation in regional scientific meetings. If your region isn’t represented here, you can work with ESA’s Membership Office to found a new one. Contact gro.asenull@pihsrebmem for more information about getting started.


ESA’s sections are sometimes based around mutual areas of scientific specialty, but they also include affinity groups among scientists and areas of important work for the Society. Sections also receive a budget based on their membership, and often spend those funds on special projects and to reach beyond the Society’s membership for collaborative opportunities. Like with chapters, there is a process to create a new section, so get in touch with gro.asenull@pihsrebmem to learn how.

Standing Committees

The ESA Council also includes the chairs of the standing committees. These groups are often chaired by members of the Governing Board to see to various areas of crucial work that require Society members’ involvement. Committee members may be appointed by the chairs; we periodically seek nominations for these roles: