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This version of governance is no longer in use. See the new governance version 2.0.


Governance Model

 version 1.0 ratified at 2/9/15 board meeting 

version 1.1 (below) has been edited for the following:

Remove listing of initial team members. Instead point to the steering team pages.

Clarify voting processes. For example, there is no need to vote for use case steering team members. By definition they are the board members from the service providers.

Clarify definition of roles to be consistent with the roles defined by the technical steering team.

Governance of the ONOS™ project is a hybrid. It attempts to take what has worked well for open source projects and leave out what didn’t work so well. Mostly, it is governed as a technical meritocracy – those who contribute the most have the most influence on the technical direction and decisions. There is also an element of benevolent stewardship. This is what gives the project its strong vision, goals, and technical shepherding. More specifically, ONOS governance is

  • technical meritocracy because technical teams manage themselves to do what is technically right for the community. People who make the most contributions to their teams have the most influence. In addition, technical project leaders and steering team members are elected by active contributors.

  • benevolent stewardship because ON.lab’s board of directors retains the right to select the chairman of the ONOS advisory board and the leaders of the technical steering team, release management team, and community team. ON.Lab anticipates that it will rarely exercise this right, and that the project will operate autonomously; however, it retains this right in order to ensure that the project is successful. The ONOS project is a collaborative project in the Linux Foundation. Funding for the core engineering team comes from the ONOS partnership set up by the Open Networking Laboratory ("ON.Lab"), a nonprofit public benefit corporation.

     

Goals

The goals of ONOS project governance are to:

  • Provide an environment that thrives on technical meritocracy. Merit is based on technical contribution, not on financial contribution.

  • Have strong technical vision and shepherding. This ensures architectural integrity of the codebase.
  • Provide a framework for ONOS teams and projects – how they are started, how they are managed, how members are elected, how conflicts are resolved, how they are disbanded when no longer needed.

  • Be clear on how ONOS software evolves – how code is added to (or removed from) the project.

  • Be clear on how decisions are made and conflicts resolved in the community.

  • Make it easy for community members to participate.

  • Avoid bureaucracy.

  • Create a great codebase.

Principles

The principles of ONOS governance are in line with these community values:

  • Serve our Customers.

  • Practice true Meritocracy.

  • Operate with Transparency.

  • Strive for Quality, consistently.

  • Value and enable Innovation.

  • Respect others in all Interactions.

In addition, the over-arching governance principle is To act in the best interest of the broader community.

Governance Structure

The ONOS project is governed by four teams and a board of directors. The four teams are the technical steering team, the use case team, the release management team, and the community team. ONOS subprojects are formed as part of one of the four teams.


ONOS Board

The board is a group of representatives from the partner organizations. It is governed by the Chairman of the Board. The board has the following roles and responsibilities:

  • Strategic direction

  • New member recruiting

  • Conflict resolution between teams

  • Ambassadors for ONOS

  • ONOS trademark management 

  • Elect the lead of the Use Case Steering Team

The board leaves all technical decisions to the technical steering team in the spirit of open source technical meritocracy practice.

The governance document for the board can be found here.

Steering Teams

Four steering teams govern the ONOS project.

Technical Steering Team

The technical steering team is responsible for all technical decisions in the project. They are responsible for the content and structure of the code base and for all technical priorities with respect to the code base. The ONOS chief architect is the team lead of the technical steering team. The ON.Lab board of directors reserves the right to remove and replace the lead of the technical steering team at any time.

Technical Steering Team Page

Email: onos-tech-steering-team@onosproject.org - Archive

Use Case Steering Team

The use case steering team is responsible for prioritizing the use cases that will be developed. They are responsible for the prioritization of all use cases and for all capabilities within those use cases. The use case steering team provides the customer requirements to the ONOS technical team. The use case steering team is lead by an elected representative nominated from the group of members who are customers (in this case, service providers).

Use Case Steering Team Page

Email: onos-use-case-team@onosproject.org - Archive

Release Management Team

The release management team owns the release management process and is responsible to make sure that releases happen on time with the highest quality. The release management team owns the responsibility for determining the priority of features targeted for a particular release. The release management team lead is elected by the technical committers. The ON.Lab board of directors reserves the right to approve or veto this selection, and to appoint the team lead.

Release Management Team Page

Email: onos-release-team@onosproject.org - Archive

Community Steering Team

The community steering team is responsible for the care and feeding of the community. It is responsible to address community issues, to grow the community and to make sure that the community thrives. The community steering team lead is elected by the technical committers. The ON.Lab board of directors reserves the right to approve or veto this selection, and to appoint the team lead.

Community Steering Team Page

Email: onos-community-team@onosproject.org - Archive

Subprojects

Subprojects are formed when needed as part of a steering team. Subprojects are self-forming, self-managing groups of people with a common goal. The people in the subproject decide how to choose the subproject leader.

Governance Details

Classes of Participation

There are four classes of participation in the governance process. Each plays a different role in governance.

  • Open Networking Lab - the board of directors and employees of Open Networking Laboratory
  • Service Providers - the primary end users of ONOS derived products
  • Vendors - the companies who build products based on ONOS for consumption by the service providers
  • Community - independent members of the community

ONOS Board

Composition of the Board

The Board is composed of a chairman and one member from ON.Lab and each partner organization. In addition, each partner may name one alternative member to attend meetings in case the primary member is unable to attend. The maximum number of partner board members is 15. Each organization may only have one member on the board. The current board is found here.

Elections

The Chairman of the Board is chosen by the Open Networking Laboratory Board of Directors. Each organization is responsible for nominating their board member. The chairman of the board must approve the nomination. Board members are (re) nominated/approved every year. Nominations/approvals are held in the first quarter of each calendar year. If any board member must leave before the end of their term, their organization will nominate a new member and that member must be approved by the Chairman of the Board. If the Chairman of the Board must step down, then the ON.Lab Board of Directors will select a new Chairman.

2016 Elections Process and Information can be found here.

Voting

There are three classes of voting: ON.Lab, Vendors and Service Providers. Each receives votes according to the following allocation of 100 votes. Votes may be fractional.

  • Chairman - 10 votes

  • Vendor - 40/(number of vendors)

  • Service Provider - 50/(number of service providers)

Should a tie occur on a vote, the Chairman of the Board will break the tie.

Technical Steering Team

The technical steering team is responsible for all technical decisions having to do with the ONOS core codebase. The ONOS core codebase is the software distribution represented by the ONOS trademark. Use case applications, southbound plug-ins for non-OpenFlow devices, sample applications, vendor proprietary extensions may or may not be part of the ONOS core. It is entirely up to the technical steering team to decide what constitutes the ONOS core codebase.

The membership is found on the home page.

Roles

The definitive section describing technical roles can be found here.

  • "Contributor": Anyone who signs a CLA and contributes a patchset and has had their code accepted in review. 
  • "Reviewer": Everyone can review any patchset. 
  • "Module owner": Someone who can give a +2 review for a part of the codebase and submit code in that area
  • "Project owner": Someone who can give a +2 review and submit anywhere in the codebase
  • Voting member: A contributor, a module owner, or a project owner.

Membership Elections

New technical steering team members will be elected on a yearly basis. Elections are held in the first quarter of each calendar year. At the time of election the following occurs:

  • The lead is (re) appointed by the board of Open Networking Laboratory.
  • The lead decides the appropriate size of the technical steering team. The ON.Lab board of directors has veto power on the choice of size.
  • Technical members are nominated by anyone, including themselves. They must already be active voting members.
  • The technical community of voting members votes to elect steering team members. Each voter has one vote for each position (if there are 3 positions up to vote, then each voter has 3 votes). A voter may only cast 1 vote per candidate.
  • Ties are broken by the technical steering team leader.

If a team member leaves the team during the year, it is up to the team leader whether or not to hold an election to put someone else into the position before the next scheduled election.

Other Changes

  • If the ONOS Chief Architect leaves ON.Lab for any reason the ON.Lab board of directors reserves the right to appoint a new ONOS Chief Architect.

  • If any member of the technical steering team changes their corporate affiliation during their tenure the ON.Lab board of directors reserves the right to remove them from their role on the technical steering team.

  • The ON.Lab board of directors reserves the right to select a new Chief Architect at any time.

Technical Advisory Group (currently not used)

The Technical Steering Team may organize a technical  advisory group of 3-5 architects that are leading SDN. They do not have to have any affiliation with the ONOS project. The goal of this group is twofold: solicit input from other experts in the field to guide the ONOS architecture and generate advocacy in the larger ecosystem for the work being done with ONOS. The people on the technical advisory group are all chosen by the technical steering team. 

The technical steering team will meet with the technical advisory group 2-4 times a year.

Use Case Steering Team

The use case steering team is responsible for choosing and prioritizing the use cases worked on by the community.

Each service provider has one representative on the use case steering team.The current team members are found on their home page.

Membership

The team representatives are by definition the group of board members from the service providers. The lead is elected on a yearly basis by the board. How each service provider chooses their representative is outside the scope of this document. Elections are held in the first quarter of each calendar year. At the time of the election, the following will take place:

  • The team lead is nominated by any service provider partner, including themselves, to be the team lead.
  • The entire board votes on the candidates to select the team lead.

A service provider may change its representative for any reason at any time at the sole discretion of the service provider.

If the team lead must step down before an election then a special election will be called to elect a new team leader.

Release Management Team

The Release Management team is responsible for all decisions having to do with requirements and release (note, one can substitute the Agile term “stories” for “requirements” - in this context it is the same thing). More specifically, they own the

  • Requirements database maintenance (Jira)

  • Requirements acceptance process

  • Requirements prioritization process

  • Release content prioritization

  • Release process (how subprojects get project code integrated)

Team Lead Election

Elections are held in the first quarter of each calendar year. The team lead of the release management team will be (re) elected by the technical committers. during an election, the following will occur: 

  • Lead candidates are nominated by anyone, including themselves.
  • The technical community of committers and maintainers votes to elect the lead. Each voter has one vote.

Members

Anyone may volunteer to be a member of the team. It is up to the team lead to decide how large the team is and who is accepted onto the team. If you would like to volunteer for one or more of the above teams, please send an email to the email address of the team (see above).

Community Steering Team

The community steering team is responsible for the care and feeding of the community. This team will be responsible to make sure the community has what it needs to function effectively. That may include

  • proactively checking in with members to see what can be improved

  • starting projects to improve the community

  • providing a structured way to handle conflict in the community

  • making sure communication tools work well for the community

  • owning the on-ramp process for the community

Team Lead Election

Elections are held in the first quarter of each calendar year. The team lead of the community steering team will be (re) elected by the technical committers. In an election, the following will occur:

  • Lead candidates are nominated by anyone, including themselves.
  • The technical community of committers and maintainers votes to elect the lead. Each voter has one vote.

Membership

Anyone may volunteer to be a member of the team. It is up to the team lead to decide how large the team is and who is accepted onto the team.

Subprojects

It is up to the subproject team to govern themselves as they feel appropriate. Since subprojects are attached to steering teams, the steering team may get involved to help with decision making and/or conflict resolution.

Decision Making

Subprojects govern themselves and are driven by those who volunteer to be on them. When a more formal decision must be made (outside impact or coordination with other teams/subprojects is needed) lazy consensus is used: a few positive votes with no negative votes is sufficient to get things moving. Negative votes must provide an alternative proposal and a detailed explanation of the reason for the negative vote. The subproject team will then work to resolve the negative vote.

Conflict Resolution and Escalation

When conflicts cannot be resolved in a subproject, the appropriate steering team will take responsibility to make the decision for the subproject. If the steering team cannot reach agreement then the Board  will make the decision.


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