Governance

The Zephyr Project is governed by its member organizations as a Collaborative Project underneath the Linux Foundation, a 501(c)6 non-profit organization which provides a legal and administrative framework for the project as well as many services. Members pay annual dues that are used for the administration of the project, and also contribute personnel, time, and equipment to help satisfy the project's needs, including those for infrastructure management, community management, public relations, and project advocacy. Specific roles and responsibilities are outlined below.

Governing Bodies

The project is composed of two governing groups: administrative, and technical. The administrative leaders meet in a Governing Board to discuss and choose policies, articulate strategy, and provide guidance to the technical leaders. The technical leadership includes a hierarchy of subsystem Maintainers. The Technical Steering Committee (TSC) functions as a bridge between these groups. The TSC appoints a chair who sits on the Governing Board and represents interests of the TSC, and also works with the TSC to find solutions per the direction of Governing Board. 

Each member organization provides an administrative representative to the project's Governing Board, and a technical representative to the Technical Steering Committee. In choosing Maintainers from the community of project developers, the TSC evaluates the needs of the project as a whole and the subsystem or component, taking into account the active participation of the individual. This results in a system of governance that relies on merit and trust as well as participation and transparency.

Roles and Responsibilities

Administrative governance includes oversight as well as the provision of services to the project, usually in the form of sub-groups underneath the Governing Board. These can be created at any time and consist of member representatives designated for specific administrative tasks.

Administrative Leaders

Current administrative sub-groups and roles include:

  • Technical Steering Committee, described above, organized intentionally with no single leader, with communications administered by the Community Manager
  • Finance: administration of project finances, headed by a Finance Administrator or Treasurer
  • Infrastructure: servers and systems administration, headed by a Systems Administrator
  • Advocacy: public relations, website and materials management, training management, and other outreach activities headed by a Lead Advocate
  • Community: management and coordination of community activities and forums, including the organization of conferences, direct communication with project participants, outreach to prospective members, maintaining a singe contact representing the project, and a liaison among all other groups, headed by a Community Manager, who also chairs administrative meetings and manages meeting schedules

Members of these sub-groups direct activities within those categories, often with service providers. For example, the Linux Foundation currently provides some advocacy and infrastructure (servers and systems administration) to the Zephyr Project. Other roles are filled by members.

Technical Leaders

Technical leadership also includes administrative roles defined by the needs of the project. Current technical roles include:

  • Chief Architect: responsible for directing technical tasks within the project and managing the other roles
  • Maintainers: responsible for bug triage and managing technical tasks related to specific components
  • Program/Project Manager: responsible for schedules, chairing technical meetings, and resolving conflicts within the technical development of the project
  • Release Manager: responsible for handling the release process