[Owasp-board] OWASP Foundation / transparency

Andrew van der Stock vanderaj at owasp.org
Tue Jan 16 16:12:24 UTC 2007

Hi there,

Dinis and I had a discussion on early Monday, discussing the need to
re-start the transparency process for the OWASP Foundation.

Goals as I see them:

* Transparency 
* Separation of powers, governance and technical direction
* Direct election democracy for board and core by members

However, I still would prefer to see ­leaders as a meritocracy based upon
efforts contributed to OWASP.

There are effectively two models we can look at. Dinis asked me to look at
Wikipedia, and I suggested the *BSD model. What I'd like is for each of us
to read through the various foundation models, and meet virtually later this
week so we can discuss which model best suits us.



Wikipedia has an interesting history, where the founder started with a
select number of trusted friends / lieutenants. This might have been us back
in 2001 / 2002 when Mark was still around, but no longer. There have been
recent changes with more elected folks coming on board, so it will be
interesting to see how the change in leadership affects the Wikipedia
Foundation long term.

Foundation 501(c)(3) entity with bylaws
* Board of Trustees, akin to ­board. Elected
* Officers, nominated by board from its own numbers
* Members edit materials

As Wikipedia only has two functions (system administration and keeping
Wikipedia alive) and is not project based, I¹m not sure how well this model
will work for us. 

*BSD / Apache


As Apache adopted the *BSD governance model, they are very similar. Apache
is a very similar project to us in many ways, but with far greater scaling ­
it has > 800 committers and > 50 active projects, > 100 incubated projects.
Therefore, I think the Apache / *BSD model will work for us with minimal

Foundation, a 501(c)(3) entity with bylaws
   - board (exactly like -board), elected
   - core (technical direction, no equivalent today), elected
   - Program Management Committees (akin to -leaders), a meritocracy
   - Apache - appointed Office bearers (finance, etc), nominated by board.
   - NetBSD runs office bearers as Program Management Committees (finance
committee, communications committee,etc). 
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