The IHBC has three categories of membership.
All categories of membership require that applicants agree to abide by the Institute's Code of Conduct and pay the annual subscription in full within 30 days after the beginning of each membership year.
There is no fee to change membership categories, but there are strict criteria regulating applications to become a Full Member of the IHBC, as discussed below.
The three categories of specialist membership are:
- Affiliate: The IHBC’s introductory membership category, recommended for all practitioners who want to work towards IHBC accreditation, regardless of their skills, qualifications or credentials. See more below.
- Associate: Practitioners who have secured conservation accreditation from the IHBC in their generic area of practice in line with the Institute’s membership standards and criteria and the international models on which they are based.
- Full Member: Those practitioners who have secured multidisciplinary and interdisciplinary professional accreditation from the IHBC in line with the institute’s membership criteria, outlined below.
is the default starting point for anyone seeking accreditation by the IHBC, and which commences with the registration process above.
Affiliate membership offers essential context and support for anyone looking to the IHBC for accreditation. Publications, training events, volunteering opportunities and networking all offer critical context and guidance to help align the personal skills, knowledge and experience of a prospective applicant with the IHBC’s accreditation requirements.
Affiliates also have a clear standing in the IHBC’s community, and are encouraged to participate in all our operations, especially those areas that will assist in their future accreditation.
All Affiliates are encouraged to seek formal IHBC accreditation first as an Associate of the IHBC. In addition, it is recommended that all practitioners undertake a minimum of 6 months as an Affiliate before any application for formal accreditation is commenced, though there are further restrictions for applications for full membership, discussed below.
To make an application for accreditation, whether as an Associate or as a Full Member, Affiliates currently should use the Full Member Application Form as discussed below. To be accepted as Full Members, in addition to a successful application form Affiliates MUST have EITHER five years of relevant experience OR two years of relevant experience alongside successful completion of a conservation course recognised by the IHBC.