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Governance/Foundation/TechnicalCommittee

OpenStack Technical Committee charter

Mission

The Technical Committee ("TC") is tasked with providing the technical leadership for OpenStack as a whole (all official projects, as defined below). It enforces OpenStack ideals (Openness, Transparency, Commonality, Integration, Quality...), decides on issues affecting multiple projects, forms an ultimate appeals board for technical decisions, and generally has oversight over all OpenStack projects.

OpenStack projects

Official OpenStack projects come in different flavors:

  • OpenStack Integrated projects are the main product of the OpenStack developer community. All Integrated projects are released in a coordinated fashion periodically. Projects candidate to Integrated status should go enter Incubated status first. Projects need to be elevated to Integrated status before the start of a release cycle so that they can undergo a full cycle before final release.
  • OpenStack Incubated projects are projects which want to become Integrated projects one day, or want to be merged with an existing Integrated project. They remain in Incubated status until they are mature enough to apply for Integrated status. The TC decides which projects are in Incubated status.
  • OpenStack Library projects are libraries directly or indirectly used by Integrated projects, including Python client libraries for each integrated project, and the openstack-common library. The TC decides which projects are official Library projects.
  • OpenStack Gating projects are components used in the continuous integration gating that protects our Integrated project branches from regressive changes. This includes deployment tools and integration test suites used in the validation. The TC decides which projects are official Gating projects.
  • OpenStack Supporting projects are extra projects that are necessary in the production of OpenStack Integrated projects. This includes documentation and infrastructure-related projects. The TC decides which projects are official Supporting projects.


The list of official projects can be found here.

Project Technical Leads (PTLs)

Project Technical Leads ("PTL") manage day-to-day operations, drive the project goals and resolve technical disputes within their project. Each project community should be self-managing by the contributors, and all disputes should be resolved through active debate and discussion by the community itself. However if a given debate cannot be clearly resolved, the PTL can decide the outcome. Although the TC is generally not involved in project-internal decisions, it still has oversight over project-specific decisions, especially when they affect other projects or go contrary to general OpenStack project goals.

Each OpenStack Integrated project elects one PTL. Exceptionally, some Library projects may be granted the right to elect a PTL as well (this is decided by the TC when the project is first accepted). Other project types can select or elect a project lead, but those won't be considered a "PTL" under this charter.

TC Members

The TC is composed of 13 directly-elected members. It is partially renewed using elections every 6 months. All TC members must be OpenStack Foundation individual members. You can cumulate any other role, including Foundation Director, with a TC seat.

TC Chair

After each election, the TC proposes one of its members to act as the TC chair. In case of multiple candidates, it may use a single-winner election method to decide the result (see below). The Board of Directors has the authority to approve the TC chair and shall approve the proposition, unless otherwise justified by its bylaws. The TC chair is responsible for making sure meetings are held according to the rules described below, and for communicating the decisions taken during those meetings to the Board of Directors and the OpenStack community at large. It may be revoked under the conditions described in the Foundation bylaws.

Meeting

TC meetings happen publicly, weekly on IRC. The meeting time should be decided among TC members after each election. If there isn't consensus on a meeting time, the option of rotating the time weekly should be explored. The TC maintains an open agenda on the wiki. A TC meeting is automatically called if anything is posted to that wiki by one of its members at least one day before the meeting time. For a meeting to be actually held, at least half of the members need to be present (rounded up: in a 13-member committee that means a minimum of 7 people present). Non-members affected by a given discussion are strongly encouraged to participate to the meeting and voice their opinion, though only TC members can ultimately cast a vote.

Motions

Before being put to a vote, motions presented before the TC should be discussed publicly on the development mailing-list for a minimum of 4 business days to give a chance to the wider community to express their opinion. TC members can vote positively, negatively, or abstain. Decisions need more positive votes than negative votes (ties mean the motion is rejected), and a minimum of positive votes of at least one third of the total number of TC members (rounded up: in a 13-member committee that means a minimum of 5 approvers).

Proxying

When a TC member is unable to make a meeting, he is encouraged to name a proxy that will represent his opinion and vote on his behalf during the meeting. Only members really present at the meeting (directly or proxied) can vote. A TC member may proxy another member, but nobody should ever represent more than two votes.

Election for PTL seats

PTL seats are completely renewed every 6 months. A separate election is run for each integrated project and each library project that has its own PTL. These elections are collectively held 5 weeks prior to each design summit, with nominations due 6 weeks prior to the summit and elections held open for no less than five business days.

Voters for PTL seats ("APC")

Voters for a given project PTL election are the active project contributor for the project ("APC"), which are a subset of the Foundation Individual Members. Individual Members who committed a change to a project over the last two 6-month release cycles are considered APC for that project.

Candidates for PTL seats

Any APC can propose his candidacy for the corresponding project PTL election. Sitting PTLs are eligible to run for re-election each cycle, provided they continue to meet the criteria.

Election for TC seats

The 13 TC seats are partially renewed every 6 months using staggered elections: 6 seats are renewed every Fall, and 7 seats are renewed every Spring. Seats are valid for one-year terms. For this election we'll use a multiple-winner election system (see below). The election is held 3 weeks prior to each design summit, with nominations due 4 weeks prior to the summit and elections held open for no less than five business days.

Voters for TC seats ("ATC")

The TC seats are elected by the Active Technical Contributors ("ATC"), which are a subset of the Foundation Individual Members. Individual Members who committed a change to any of the official OpenStack projects (as defined above) over the last two 6-month release cycles are automatically considered ATC. Specific contributors who did not have a change recently accepted in one of the OpenStack projects but nevertheless feel their contribution to the OpenStack project is technical in nature (bug triagers, technical documentation writers...) can exceptionally apply for ATC either by sending an email to the TC chair or by being nominated by an existing ATC via email to the TC chair. Final approval on the exception is decided by the TC itself, and is valid one year (two elections).

Candidates for TC seats

Any Foundation individual member can propose his candidacy for an available, directly-elected TC seat.

Initial committee

The current TC will serve as TC until the elections in Fall 2013. At that point, the two TC members who still had 6 months to serve get a 6-month seat, and an election is run to determine the 11 other members. Candidates ranking 1st to 6th would get one-year seats, and candidates ranking 7th to 11th would get 6-month seats. Spring 2014 elections should see the normal renewal of 7 seats.

Election systems

For single-winner elections, a Condorcet system shall be used.

For multiple-winner elections, a Condorcet or a STV system should be used.

Amendment

Amendments to this Technical Committee charter shall be proposed in a special motion, which needs to be approved by the affirmative vote of at least two-thirds of the total number of TC members (rounded up: in a 13-member committee that means a minimum of 9 approvers).