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[] Eclipse Foundation Working Group Process v2.1 proposed amendments

Dear Members,

We are writing to share with you proposed changes to the Eclipse Working Group Process.   

Since our last update to the Working Group Process in June 2019, a great deal has changed.  We have grown to now have a complement of 17 working groups, and these working groups are diverse both in their goals and their related activities.  We have also seen the Foundation update its Bylaws in support of its redomiciling to be a Belgian-based international not-for-profit association.  

The purpose of the proposed update is to have the Working Group Process match our current practices, to better align with our new Bylaws, to better clarify working group roles and responsibilities, and overall, to better articulate best practices in working group governance and operations. The proposed updates do not include any material modifications to the current operations of working groups, or the various roles and responsibilities of participants, but instead better clarifies both. 
The revised process can be viewed here.  We welcome any feedback you may have.

So exactly what’s been updated?

  • The document has undergone a major refactoring of sections to make it easier to understand and to reference
  • Alignment of Membership Types with current classes of Eclipse Foundation membership (i.e., Strategic, Contributing, Associate, Committer)
  • Replacement of references to EMO to clarify these tasks are done by Eclipse Foundation staff 
  • Inclusion of requirement of EFSP or derivative thereof to be formally adopted by Steering Committees of Working Groups engaged in creating specifications and formal choice of patent license for the specifications as per the Eclipse Foundation IP Policy prior to specifications projects being created
  • Clarification and elaboration of committee roles and responsibilities related to both governance and working group leadership
  • Clarification of the requirement and structure of Program Plans and the processes with respect to developing and approving Working Group financial budgets 
  • Clarification of the role of Committee Alternates 
  • Clarification of the specific requirements and activities related to initiating new working group opportunities, including clarification of the associated funding model for these

What has been added that is new in the revised version?
  • Guiding Principles, to align with the Guiding Principles in the Eclipse Foundation Development Process
  • A definition of the relationship of Working Groups and Projects
  • A statement to make clear that ongoing member recruitment is an ongoing goal/responsibility of working groups throughout their lifecycle
  • Explicit references to the Eclipse Community Code of Conduct and the Eclipse Foundation Communication Channel Guidelines 


What’s staying the same?
The primary aspects of Eclipse Working Group Process have all remained as previously defined.  The adoption of this revised version of the Working Group Process should not impact the operation or charters of any working group, and instead should allow for them to operate more efficiently, and with better certainty. 

When is this all happening?

All updates to the Working Group Process require approval of the Eclipse Foundation Board of Directors. The Board is currently considering these updates.  

How can I learn more?
We have scheduled an Information Session to be held Monday, July 19 beginning at 10:00 EDT / 16:00 CEST.  The Foundation team will walk interested parties through the revised Working Group Process, highlighting the proposed changes, and will be available to answer questions you may have.   The zoom link for this session is here.  We invite all committers, members, their employees and representatives to join the information session. 
Comments and feedback are welcome.  Please see the shared Google Document.  
Questions or comments can also be posted to the related GitLab Issue.
For Member Representatives receiving this email, we ask that you socialize this communication with your working group participants, especially those directly involved in working group governance such as participating on a working group steering committee.  If you are uncertain of who those participants are, please contact our membership coordination team for assistance.

Thank you for your continued support!


Paul White

VP, Member Services | Eclipse Foundation


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