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26 March 2024 Standard for Public Code community call


  • Jan Ainali
  • Eric Herman
  • Claus Mullie
  • Nico Rikken
  • Johan Groenen
  • Silona Bonewald, Foundation for Public Code NA, OSPO Alliance, Os-Gov at Eclipse Foundation
  • Maria Dalhage, Swedish Public Employment Service and Community manager NOSAD
  • Ian Forrester
  • Boris Baldassari, Eclipse Foundation
  • Matti Schneider
  • Joakim Verona, Swedish Public Employment Service
  • Max Carlson
  • Nick Gates
  • Jonas Södergren, Swedish Public Employment Service

Updates from the Foundation



We have planned for a long time to evolve the governance of the Standard for Public Code towards a more community maintained codebase. In light of the European office winding down (see above) we are speeding up that effort.


The call opened with the question: What would be some important governance aspects for you to feel empowered to continue to use and feel inspired to contribute to and consider to help maintain the Standard for Public Code? Some values that were mentioned were transparency, openness, meritocracy and neutrality. It was also mentioned that it would be nice to not have to bootstrap the governance, rather, stepping in to some existing framework would be better. Another point that was made was that creating, and “staffing”, an executive body from the start, rather than just publishing a GOVERNANCE file, would make a tremendous difference. Some also expressed it to be essential that people with historical knowledge of maintaining the Standard for Public Code to be part of this executive body. It was also highlighted that the members of this executive body are funded for their time somehow, possibly by having their organizations making a commitment to help maintain the Standard for Public Code.

As a separate point to raise the importance of active maintainers, that it is utterly important that they exist, it was agreed that: “a dead document is not authoritative”.

Some participants of the meeting expressed interest in becoming co-maintainers of the Standard for Public Code, including the Swedish Public Employment Service. Obviously, of course, pending final details of the governance.

The OSPO alliance kindly offered to provide infrastructure for the continued work. Luckily, the existing infrastructure will continue to exist, so there is no urgent need of that to date.

Besides the governance question, it was expressed that continued knowledge sharing between users of the Standard is important. Partly, the Community built companion can solve this already, by being a place to share good ways of implementing the Standard for Public Code. Similarly, a wish for the community to help disseminating the Standard for Public Code and showing good examples was expressed. Also there the Community built companion could be a solution, not to mention the list of codebases that are compliant. For the rest, using the mailing list to share knowledge and examples might be a good start.

Quite a lot of the call was spent on ideas for finding funding for the Foundation for Public Code to maintain the Standard for Public Code. Some of the ideas that was discussed was:

  • Trainings
  • Certification
  • Grants
  • Consultancy
  • Donations (mostly state/towns/users of the standard)

There was also some self reflection made: that no public organization is yet using the Standard for Public Code as an internal measurement and thus is not a critical path. This was not exactly refuted, but one counter point was that as public organizations like standards (“If we don’t create them, they will legislate them.”), it still has value as an argument in discussions. Also, as there is no blueprint for open projects and the Standard for Public Code shows how it could be done, that is a value in itself. “The structure may be more important than full compliance.”

Next steps

We will finalize a new GOVERNANCE file based on the feedback from this call and from people giving input beforehand. Thank you all for your valuable viewpoints.

This will be done together with the organizations that during the meeting and separately have stated the intentions to commit person hours to do this work and be part of an executive body.

In order to empower this executive body to have full control over the repository and the path forward, it will be transferred to a new GitHub repository with these people as owners.