Organisational Assembly - Paris (Closed meeting)

RDA Organisational Assembly - Closed meeting

For RDA Organisational and affiliate members

Plenary 6, Paris

Thursday 24 September 2015, 13:30-15:00


Draft minutes

Closed meeting (13:30-15:00) - Amphi Paul Painlevé

All slides

  1. Call to Order
    • Present: Short introductions by Larry, Stefan, John T., Wilco, Sara, Francesca, Fabrizio, Aurelia, Mustapha, Jason, Kevin, Rob,Thomas, Washington, Jamie, Patrice, Amy, Leif, Malcolm, Cynthia, Tiziana, Damien, Adam, Andrew, Patrick, Fran, Mark, Juan-Walter (co-chairs), Fotis (secretariat) - to be udpated with scanned information.
    • Future Directions planning – Walter Stewart, Research Data Canada, OA(B) Co-Chair- 15’ - (SLIDES)
      • Group by Fran, Ross, Sandra and Walter: It is about organisational effectiveness and efficiency. Identified after P4. Appointed by Council in Dec'14. Consultation session before San Diego. A survey went out to the RDA community. 10% sample for the survey which is good. Further distillation occured after that, with webinars in the 3 regions. Creation of a draft report. Now we are in the phase of who will do what, when it will be done, and how to assess/track the progress. 
      • 3 main topics: Engagement, Coordination, Communiation. Emphasis given on the volunteering basis of the organisations. Honors the volunteers and have them engaged efficiently. A set of actions prepared.
        • Bringing clarity and ease of how one can help RDA. International plenaries are a critical piece of RDA. A set of ambassadors both on engagement and communication. It was raised the open session that RDA focus is not clear and one of the actions work to address this. Coordination: Track and expedite RDA processes so that they are not onerous and are easy and focused.
        • Next steps: This week: Get feedback from Council and members. In the next month: Directions Document Organisation Committee and the Secretary General (SG) will develop a 3 year blue print for implementitation including milestontes and metrics for success. This fall: Council approves 3 year blue print. Council appoints an Implementation Steering Committee to support the Secretary Generail in his responsibility for implmenting the blueprint. Over the next 3 years: The Steering Committee meets with SG to conduct semi-annual review of milestones. The committee chair and SG report to Council and then at the plenary.
        • Questions: Andrew: Process for deciding the sequence for the actions/priorities? When the ambassadors will become active? Fran: The Org. Committee will get together next month. For each of these actions we will figure out who will do it. Try to clarify the roles of all governance groups: who is gonna do what and set milestones per year. Get a sense of what success looks like. Fit all that into something sustainable with the 3200+ volunteers. If anyone has some input on the prioritasion, please send it around and we will take this into account. Walter: Most of these actions are named in the survey. Fran: Would like to thank the co-chairs and the OAB for their contributions.
  2. The role of OA in reviewing outputs, driving adoption and forming consensus, esp. review process – Attached council document – Juan Bicarregui, STFC, OA(B) Co-Chair 15’
  3. TAB report – Andrew Treloar, ANDS, Australia, TAB Co-chair - 15’ - SLIDES
    1. Items 2 and 3 were handled together.  OAB-TAB collaboration in steering future work of RDA work. Andrew:
      • I was asked to reflect on the outputs process and the role of OAB. The attached document was sent to Council and was discussed in the June Council meeting on the role of OAB in the RDA outputs adoption. This was also brought to the TAB and TAB discussed this last week. Not full consensus in TAB. You can consider my presentation as my view, informed by the other TAB member views.
      • Discussion on the governance diagram and basic principles: WG/IGs should come on top and all the rest supports them being in the bottom. TAB and OAB are central to RDA's role. But complementary, not competing. TAB: Technical oversight/input into RDA processes and outputs. OAB: Organisation viewpoint on the processes. In addition, OA members pay members to travel and attend the plenaries working on RDA activities. One of the tensions, is between top-down guidance and bottom-up activity. But creative tension/dynamic.
      • Outputs: TAB wants to make sure that outputs sovle a problem that needs to be solved in a way that makes sense and that is adoptable. OAB wants to make sure that ouptus solve a problem that they (the OA members) have (or may have) in a way that they want to/can adopt.  
      • A possible approach: Early: OAB and/or OA members are encouraged to comment on/help shape case statements/charters. Mid way: OA members act as early pilots and help shape outputs, Late: OA members adopt or plan for adoption: OAB produces adoption report for Council to guide their assessment. So two streams of inputs to the Council: Community process (with comments summarised by the secretariat) and OAB report.
      • Does this approach seem reasonable in outline? How can it be improved? How much process do we want to wrap around it?
      • Discussion:
        • Tiziana's question: Is there a formal process? Andrew: If the question is whether there is a formal way for this to happen: Not yet. If the question is whether there is a way to happen: Yes. But there is enough opportunity to comment and we should encourage everybody to do so.
        • Juan: Goes through the document: Clarification on the word "review". It is meant as commenting in the public space. Not a go, not go. Agreed. Andrew: TAB and OA members can also comment as individuals. Kevin: Make sure that two people from different viewpoints (TAB, OAB) will provide comments.
        • Larry: Question on the last sentence about the life after endorsement of outputs. Not clear what happens afterwards. Yes, this needs to be discussed.
        • Wilco: Where are the users in the adoption process? Andrew: Council is the one who makes sure that there is consensus on the outputs. One channel is the the community (includes invdividual users) and the other is the OAB (organisational users). 
        • John Towns: Not fully clear: What does endorsed mean for me? At what stage is it? There may be different levels of outputs. But adoption report is great and I can make assessment whether this is useful for my organisation. Fran: It should be in a state that can be used by others. So the process of endorsement is to check that this happens. The ones who said that would adopt it, do adopt it or others adopt it. We don't want something that won' t be used. We can't expect that it is a global standard for everyone. So if processes need to be tweaked, then we should tweak them. Mark: In the secretariat we can provide some more info on the different types of outputs. Need to discuss it further. 
        • New Zealand: OAB takes responsibility for adoption: What accountability will the OA/OAB take? Shouldn't the accountability be with the adopters? Mismatch with who is accountable. Fran: We need to work on tihs.
  4. Council Report - 10’, Fran Berman, RDA Council Co-chair
    • Fran: Glad to see more and more substance in each next plenary!
    • Council: Responsible for strategy things: Looking for consenus. Regular meetings like all bodies. Rough agenda-standing items: TAB, OAB, SG news and reports, Plenaries, Finances, Funder engagements.
    • Operational:
      • Finances: We have the RDA Foundation: UK Charity with a bank account to collect the Org members' dues. Finance committee with Doris from Germany. Guidelines on how to spend the money.
      • Plenaries: Huger deal as numbers grow. Plan the plenaries far out. A lot of members in EU and in US. So the sequence of plenaries is EU, US and somewhere else. P8 with WDS and SciDataCon. P9 Barcelona. And after that in Brazil or Canada. Plan until plenary 11.
      • Two other things: a lot of discussions about sustainability and regional RDAs.
        • Sustainability is major issue. Try to work with R&D funding agencies to generate a sustainable model for RDA. Some other organisaitons charge the individiual membership. Or the organisation need to pay. We at RDA wanted to keep the dues low. Engage with the public sector to secure funding. Plans in a funders forum for new funders. John a lot of this work and Ross also. China, Japan, South Africa, UK, Germany, France, and Welcome Trust in discussions.
        • Regional involvement-test-beds: There are a lot of activities in regions but also at global level. How do we distribute these? Need more explicit discussions with regions on branding, activities etc. There has been a lot of discussion on regional test-beds. Also as a way to amplify impact and answer what do you do with these outputs after their endorsement. Council discussed about this.
    • DIscussion:
      • Tiziana: How is the budget discussed and presented in the public? Mark: Two budgets: Budget for the overall organisation (RDA Global), which is difficult to estimate as a lot of in kind contribtions. And there is the budget of the RDA Foundation itsself. The income comes from Org Members dues and occasional subcontracts (initially from RDA Europe.) Hired accountant to prepare the annual statements and just now hired accountant company to provide a Virtual Finance Office. Quarterly budget reports. The first quarter will be early next year. Currently 75K USD per year from dues, paying accountants, lawyers and some travel etc. So the answer is that there will be a quarterly report. To be submited also to the charity.
      • Cynthia: What happens next? Fran: Take the outputs and replicate them in test-beds so that they can be taken up? But this is not the only idea. This is a next wave for us.
  5. OAB clustering/mapping exercise (more detailed version) – Leif Laaksonen, CSC, Finland - 15’ - SLIDES
    • This item was cancelled as there was not enough time and there was already a presentation at the Open meeting.
  6. OAB election plan – Call for candidates – Walter 15’ - SLIDES
    • Introduction: Walter explains briefly the role of OA vs OAB. OA consists of reps from all Org members and meets at each plenary. OAB is elected by the OA to function between plenaries and move the agenda forward with more dedicated people. In P3-Dublin, it is agreed that we will not elect an OAB until the OA is 3 times the size of OAB (which is 12), i.e.36. So OA=OAB until 36 members. Last month we passed this threshold and now we are 39 members (37 + 2 new ones from the SMEs present in the experimentation day). The monthlly calls will be open to all OA members, but we need to make sure that we have the core members that have time. So we will proceed with the elections.
    • Election overall plan: 11 members + one of OAB co-chairs will stay for a year. And then the OAB will elect a chair among its members. And in a year we will replace the veteran chair who will step down. Once we have the 11 elected, there will be 5 for one year and 6 for two years. OAB memebrs can run again. What we haven't done yet is the issue of balance. Think about this and address it in the October call. ACTION to include in the agenda of the next meetnig. TAB balance criteria: regional, discipline, org. type. For OAB discipline may not be useful. Org type may be useful though. But again, we need to have this discussion and all members to reflect on this.
    • Timeline: Formal call for nominations (similar to TAB processs) will be issued somewhere in December, with a deadline at the end of January'16. There will be a meet the candidates session at P7 and an e-election (as with TAB) after that. As the role of OA grows, the OAB will become more important. Encourage you all to run for OAB. As a reminder: 1 call per month, rotating in 3 regions.
  7. AoB, 5’
  8. Photo (at the end)


Closed meeting (13:30-15:00) - Amphi Paul Painlevé

Objectives of the closed part of the meeting:

Our members exclusive session at Plenary 6 is scheduled on Thursday, September 24th from 13:30 to 15:00.  We hope you plan to attend.  Our agenda will focus on some major internal issues for RDA, the OA, and the OAB.  At this meeting we will be launching the move towards electing an OAB and calling for the nomination of candidates.

  1. Call to Order
  2. Future Directions planning – Walter Stewart, Research Data Canada, OA(B) Co-Chair- 15’
  3. The role of OA in reviewing outputs, driving adoption and forming consensus, esp. review process – Attached council document – Juan Bicarregui, STFC, OA(B) Co-Chair 15’
  4. TAB report – Andrew Treloar, ANDS, Australia, TAB Co-chair - 15’
    1. Response to item 3
    2. OA-TAB collaboration in steering future work of RDA work
  5. Council Report - 10’
  6. OAB clustering/mapping exercise (more detailed version) – Leif Laaksonen, CSC, Finland - 15’
  7. OAB election plan – Call for candidates – Walter 15’
    • Candidates by January 31st, staging in Tokyo, Balancing discussion
  8. AoB, 5’
  9. Photo (at the end)