Aligning wishes of multiple orgs into an open source project
03-05, 16:40–17:10 (Europe/Berlin), Stage Auditorium

Having a roadmap as an open source project can encourage adaption and align contributors. However roadmaps require commitment from its participants - how do you do this as open source project with contributions coming from multiple organizations? Join this session to learn how one could solve this.

Having a public and up-to-date roadmap for an open source project can encourage new contributors to join a project, guide the efforts of existing contributors, and give confidence to adopters about the direction and sustainability of the project.

However for a roadmap to work you need commitment from its participants. In a company, management can commit to a product roadmaps top-down but you can't do that in an open source project with various organizations contributing. Nick and Thomas are working on a solution in two of their open source projects (ClearlyDefined & OSS Review Toolkit) to try to solve this commitment challenge.

Multiple organizations and individuals are working together in the ClearlyDefined and ORT, the call for a public roadmap became stronger. For example, people want to know when improvement requests relevant to their organization will be implemented. Whether something gets implemented and when, depends on the priorities of the people making and reviewing the contributions. In most open source projects small requests can often be quickly addressed but bigger changes usually require a commitment from people’s employers. This was where ClearlyDefined and ORT - like other open source projects - ran into a demand and supply mismatch: each organization has their own wishes, priorities and resources towards the projects, but every big change requires the involvement of the project maintainers who are either volunteering their time or need to get time from their organization to be involved.

In this session Nick and Thomas will present an innovative governance and funding model created by the ORT community to align demand and supply between organizations so they can agree to implement items together resulting in a roadmap with committed delivery items.

See also: Slides (3.9 MB)

Thomas Steenbergen helps organizations manage open source in a strategic and efficient manner that meets their business needs. Previously he was the Head of Open Source Program Office at EPAM Systems and HERE Technologies. He is maintainer of OSS Review Toolkit, SPDX, TODO group and a regular contributor to FINOS's Open Source Readiness and OpenChain. He is a frequent speaker and panelist at various global open source conferences and is always happy to start a conversation around anything open source. See also for contact and project details.

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Nick Vidal is Community Manager of ClearlyDefined (hosted by the Open Source Initiative) and Outreach Chair at the Confidential Computing Consortium (hosted by the Linux Foundation). Previously, he was the Director of Community and Business Development at the Open Source Initiative and Director of Americas at the Open Invention Network.