Duhaime's Law Dictionary

Agenda Definition:

A term of parliamentary law and procedure referring to a program, written notice and order of business at an upcoming meeting.

Related Terms: Meeting

Craig describes an agenda as:

"... a list of those matters which are to come before the meeting for consideration and decision.

"The secretary may prepare the agenda on his own initiative or after consultation with the chairman. It is usual, however, for the secretary to consult the chairman to ascertain whether any other matters ought to be included on the agenda and, again, before the agenda is circulated in its final form, to submit the agenda to the chairman for his final approval.

"The secretary will also take steps to see that copies are available for circulation to the members... The usual practice is to attach a copy of the agenda to the notice which is sent to the members convening the meeting."

Comes from the Latin word "agree" which means "to do" or "things to be done".

The requirement of an agenda is usually not formal but, instead, a frequently used device as with an agenda, members have notice of the business to be transacted at the upcoming meeting as well giving the chair and the members an organized order of business at the meeting; a roadmap to follow, a program.

Preparation of the agenda is usually the responsibility of the chair with the assistance of the corporate secretary.


  • Craig, William Graham, The Law and Procedure of Meetings in Canada (Toronto: Ryerson Press, 1966), page 32.
  • Taggart, W. J., Horsley's Meetings – Procedure, Law and Practice, 2nd Edition (Sydney: Butterworth, 1983)

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