Membership Process 2018

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Approved by board vote in August 2016 and amended in 2018 to extend the use of electronic voting to charter members to reduce the email traffic on discuss lists.

General Process

Each year new charter members are nominated and elected by existing OSGeo charter members, in a process operated by the Chief Returning Officer (CRO).



  1. The nominations period should be roughly 2 weeks, and should be announced by the CRO on the OSGeo announce and discuss lists.
  2. An existing charter member can nominate potential new Charter Member(s).
    • Nominees should meet the positive attributes for Charter Members.
    • Please confirm with the nominated person first!
    • Please email (not to with their name, contact email (if possible, use a personal email address not the work one that can change in the future) and paragraph describing why you are recommending this person as a Charter Member (please include details about the positive attributes of the nominee)
  3. CRO will verify with the nominee that they are willing to stand for nomination
  4. Candidate review
    • All OSGeo charter members will receive an invitation to use our electronic voting system to second any number of proposals from the nominee list.
    • All OSGeo members (members as well as charter members) are encouraged to discuss candidates on the discuss list.
    • A veto may be raised by any OSGeo charter member by sending a private email to the CRO (at
  5. Once all the review period close
    • CRO will gather all vetos (if any) for the OSGeo board for an anonymous review
    • If the veto is accepted by the board, then the CRO shall reply to the public and the nomination is removed from the CROs candidates list
    • A summary of charter candidates will be prepared and presented by the CRO to the OSGeo board
    • A eligible nomination must be seconded by at least one other charter member
    • When approved by the OSGeo board the candidates will be added as charter members and posted to the OSGeo discuss list.

Positive Attributes

Recommended membership selection criteria include:

  • Members should believe in the general goals of the Foundation. To support and promote the use of free and open source geospatial software, education and data in a collaborative manner.
  • Previous participation in or support of OSGeo activities
  • The person should already have made a contribution to free and open source geospatial software, education or open data.
  • The person should be willing to put in time and effort on the Foundation, perhaps joining committee(s), or volunteering in some other way that gets the Foundation going.
  • Members should be prepared to work constructively and positively towards the goals of the Foundation. Good teamwork skills are an asset.

Membership nominations should strive to promote diversity:

  • Nominate members representing a diversity of geographic regions, diversity of projects, diversity of programming languages.
  • Nominate members representing and diversity of interests (e.g., corporate, hobbyist, educational, scientific).
  • Nominate members representing a diversity of humanity including gender and race


Official responsibilities for charter members are important, but relatively light. They include:

  1. Annually vote for OSGeo Board members.
  2. Annually vote for new OSGeo Charter members.