How have the Steering Committees made things better ?

Paul W. Frields stickster at
Fri Sep 3 16:00:30 UTC 2010

On Fri, Sep 03, 2010 at 09:51:05AM +0530, "sankarshan (সঙ্কর্ষণ)" wrote:
> Hi,
> I guess the advisory-board list is as good as it gets if I wanted to 
> have a wider group discussing the point. So, here goes.
> My view, which I admit could be way off target, has been that the 
> various Steering Committees within Fedora are 'enablers'. Or, in other 
> words, they discuss, indulge in discourse and decide but with a simple 
> objective - to make Fedora better. This could be extrapolated in terms 
> of processes, technology, choices, goals and so forth.
> The point that I was pondering over for a couple of weeks is whether we 
> actually do go back and ask the *SCo(s) to look inwards and ask as to 
> what positive change they have brought forth. And, is that well 
> articulated amongst the constituents of the project. As much as such 
> change is a factor of the *SCo leadership team it is also a factor of 
> how much the cross *SCo vision/goal sharing happens. Do the *SCo(s) have 
> a formal process of discussing amongst themselves, the Board and the 
> Fedora Project Leader at reasonably frequent intervals taking stock of 
> the direction of the project ?
> So, have we really sat down and tried to assess how the Steering 
> Committees have made things better ?

In some cases the steering committees -- and there are only a few
-- have made a point of assessing and reporting their own achievements
for their constituencies.  For example, FAmSCo does a monthly report
now in which they discuss the work done over the previous period.
The last completed month's report is here:

(Understandably, a few areas are still being completed on the report
for August.)

The former Docs Steering Committee (FDSCo), back around 2007(?),
realized that the formal nature of the steering committee wasn't
really providing any tangible benefit to the Docs team.  The people
who showed up to work on the FDSCo were, by and large, the same people
who were involved in doing a lot of the rest of the work.  Imposing an
extra level of governance wasn't meaningful because the decisions were
all being taken by the people involved already.

In large part, at least from the Board perspective, this list is meant
to serve as the forum for taking stock of direction and achievements.
Perhaps it could be a goal that once a quarter the Board issues a
summary report of work done in the last quarter, where applicable
notes on the effect of previous work, and what the Board sees as
challenges for the next quarter and how that fits into the longer term
vision of the Fedora Project.

Sankarshan, did I understand the basic gist of your question properly?

Paul W. Frields                      
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