Topic: OGC Architecture Board

The OGC Architecture Board (OAB) is a formal group of members acting within the Technical Comittee. The group started with the mission to provide guidance on "Consortium wide architectural issues". In recent times, the work of the OAB has expanded, taking over the work of the old 'Review Board' to review and assess candiate standards, and acting as a forum for the discussion of general TC issues.

The OAB has provided much valuable work within the Technical Committee in all these roles. However, the increasing number of different responsiblities and the incresing importance and centrality of the OAB mean that the effectiveness and the actions of the OAB are increasingly critical to the work of others. This has led to a number of criticisms of the work of the OAB:
  • the actual roles and responsibilities of the OAB are not clear since the TC P&P have not been updated to reflect the incrresed scope of OAB work,
  • the architectural harmonization work of the OAB has faltered in recent times,
  • the editorial review work of the OAB is insufficient to ensure that specification documents are well written, coherent, effective, and in a common form,
  • the OAB does not provide clear, two way communication channels with the wider membership,
  • the OAB elections lack clarity,
  • there is no regular assessment review of OAB activity.
These issues are fleshed out below.



Another topic related to OAB: record keeping. The current situation is: - agenda distributed by email - minutes captured in document (usually MSWord) - draft minutes posted as a file to portal - OAB advised by email - vote to accept minutes in next OAB meeting - adopted/modified minutes announced to TC membership - additional material is in mails to OAB email list

This is not very searchable, issues sometimes get dropped, record keeping is fragmented and incomplete.

There are plenty of modern tools that could be used to improve this - basic issue trackers at the very least. OAB should move some of its process and all of the recording keeping to something along these lines.

Simon Cox

-- SimonCox - 08 Aug 2013

On behalf of Paula McLeod

What is the role of OAB in ensuring quality control of standards resulting from SWG process? The ability to identify issues related to the technical implementation. In the development of specs, OAB should be more present in their development.

-- TrevorTaylor - 15 Aug 2013

On behalf of Paula McLeod

Perform a review of the governance structure roles and responsibilities, in particular the Architecture Board. Define priorities and direction for standards development and focus on depth and quality, rather than breadth and quantity. Ensure the application of policies, procedures and decisions align with agreed upon and well communicated principles. Ensure clear values, ethics and principles that are understood and practiced.

-- TrevorTaylor - 15 Aug 2013
Topic revision: r1 - 17 Oct 2013, GregBuehler
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