Is There a Difference between The Standard Code of Parliamentary Procedure (“Sturgis”) and AIP’s Standard Code of Parliamentary Procedure?

I recently posted that as a result of the new 12th Edition of Robert’s Rules, there are updated “cheat sheets” to the motions most often seen in meetings. On the Charts & Handouts Page of our firm’s parliamentary website are parliamentary motions guides to the most common parliamentary authorities, including Robert’s Rules of Order Newly Revised (12th Edition), The Standard Code of Parliamentary Procedure, Fourth Edition (“Sturgis”), and the American Institute of Parliamentarian’s Standard Code of Parliamentary Procedure. (Different types of organizations tend to use different parliamentary authorities.)

That led someone to ask, “Is there a difference between The Standard Code of Parliamentary Procedure, Fourth Edition and AIP’s Standard Code of Parliamentary Procedure?”

Legally, the two are different books, with different content, ISBN numbers, and authors (though some overlap). Here’s a bit more explanation from my latest book, Notes and Comments on Robert’s Rules of Order, Fifth Edition:

Alice Sturgis, The Standard Code of Parliamentary Procedure (Fourth Edition). Sturgis’s first edition [in 1950] was a major contribution to those seeking a more readable text on parliamentary law and practice. Revised by the American Institute of Parliamentarians, the Fourth Edition published in 2001 provides a well-written alternative or companion to Robert’s.

American Institute of Parliamentarians, American Institute of Parliamentarians Standard Code of Parliamentary Procedure. The AIP Standard Code (published 2012) is based on the principles of simplification, modernization, and ease of comprehension enunciated by Alice Sturgis.

A couple thoughts–

  1. The AIP Standard Code is not “Sturgis,” which refers specifically to The Standard Code of Parliamentary Procedure.
  2. While not a direct successor to The Standard Code, the AIP Standard Code is VERY similar, even though there are some different practices, terms, etc.
  3. The Standard Code of Parliamentary Procedure (“Sturgis”) is an excellent book, but will probably not be updated. I suspect the 2012 Fourth Edition will be the last. 
  4. The AIP Standard Code will be updated, and a second edition is anticipated in 2023.

I have many clients, particularly physician and dental organizations, that use one or the other Standard Code. Not huge differences in practice–really more a function of preference and tradition.

Corporate LawParliamentary Law