Call for TAB Nominations 2018

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10 July 2018 1265 reads

Call for Nominations for the RDA Technical Advisory Board (TAB) 2018

Do you want to play a significant role in the technical direction of RDA?  Get involved in the Technical Advisory Board!  

Do you know someone who would be a wonderful asset to TAB? Encourage them to run for TAB!

RDA is now seeking candidates for its annual TAB election, to be held in November 2018.  Terms are for three (3) years. We encourage participation from RDA members at all stages of their careers, but please note that current members of RDA’s Council, Secretariat, and Organizational Advisory Board are not eligible for TAB membership. 

Nominations will be accepted until midnight UTC on 30 September 2018. See below for more detail.

Why are we looking for new TAB Members?

RDA conducts TAB elections on a yearly basis, coinciding with the year's even-numbered Plenary. At these times, a set of TAB members rotates off after their 3-year-terms come to an end.

Four of the RDA TAB members’ terms are ending in November 2018. The four TAB Members stepping down may run again.

What does TAB do?

TAB is responsible for the technical direction of the RDA and provides technical expertise and advice to the Council, as well as helping to develop and review RDA Working and Interest Groups to promote their impact and effectiveness.  Among other tasks, TAB Members:

  • engage with the RDA membership and feed their ideas and TAB perspectives into RDA processes and strategies;
  • evaluate proposed Working Groups and Interest Groups;
  • act as liaisons to endorsed Working and Interest Groups;
  • facilitate relevant communication and coordination across the various WGs and IGs; and
  • work with RDA Working Groups to promote adoption and effectiveness of their Outputs.

But that’s not all!

The Technical Advisory Board also provides strategic insight into the current and future direction of RDA, and each member’s own strengths are drawn upon regularly.  Expertise and advice could take the form of reviewing new Working Groups or Interest Groups, responding to RDA membership input, working with Council, or any number of other ways.

Much more information is available in the document TAB: What we do and how we do it on the RDA Web site.

Who does TAB need?

There are 13 TAB members, and 4 are stepping down in this cycle. As a result of a decision made at the Council meeting in July 2017, the 2018 election to TAB will again elect 5 members to replace the 4 who are rotating off after their 3 year terms are complete. The total number of TAB members will therefore increase to 14 after this year’s TAB Election. This process will also be followed in 2019 to expand the total TAB size to 15.  

There are balance criteria to ensure that disciplines and regions are adequately represented.

The Regional criterion is no more than 6, but no fewer than 2 TAB members from each of

  • North America and South America
  • Europe and Africa
  • Asia and Oceania

The additional criterion of Discipline is applied to achieve sufficient breadth of expertise. The Discipline criterion is based on the Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development (OECD) classification (see for the sub-classifications under each category).

The major categories are:

  • Natural sciences
  • Engineering and technology
  • Medical and health sciences
  • Agricultural sciences
  • Social sciences
  • Humanities

No more than 5 TAB members can be from any of the listed disciplines. There is no minimum number of TAB members required per discipline.

Following a decision made by Council in November 2017, the Role criterion has been removed.

A more complete description of the entire TAB Election Process and application of the balancing criteria is available via the TAB RDA page,

Interested?  Here’s how to apply!

Any current RDA member may self-nominate or be nominated by others. 

Not sure if you are an RDA member?  Do you have an account on our website (  Yes? Then you’re a member!  No?  Sign up now!

Know someone who would be perfect for the role?  Encourage them to apply!

To apply, please fill in the candidacy form at

Each candidate must have a minimum of three (3) RDA members willing to second their nomination. Seconders must send a simple statement to the RDA Secretariat ( stating that they support the nomination of the candidate.

Each candidate’s statement (but not the nomination seconds) will be posted on the RDA website, along with a photo.

Applications and seconds are due by midnight UTC on 30 September 2018.

Elections will open on 5 November 2018, at Plenary 12 in Gaborone, Botswana, and close on 19 November 2018 (two weeks later). All RDA members will be asked to vote.

Still have unanswered questions?

Current TAB members will be happy to discuss the time commitments, working procedures, and other elements of TAB membership. Find a list of current and past TAB members here:

Additional information is available from any of the RDA Secretariat members, at