Incubation Committee

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The project incubation committee is responsible for overseeing the incubation process for new projects entering the foundation. The incubation committee provides resources to assist new projects to reach full membership, and makes recommendations to the board when they feel projects have completed incubation.

About the Incubation Committee

The OSGeo Incubation Committee is an open source advocacy and outreach activity welcoming projects and development teams to our foundation.

The committee is responsible for:

  1. OSGeo project website review
    • Reviewing applications to list projects on the OSGeo website
    • Preparing and recommend criteria and review process for projects to be listed on the OSGeo website
  2. Community project program
    • Reviewing community project applications and recommending projects to the board to be accepted as community projects
    • Reporting on the status of projects in the community project program to the board periodically (via Chair)
    • Preparing and recommending community project process and criteria to the board.
    • See OSGeo_Community_Projects for more information
  3. OSGeo Incubation process
    • Reviewing applications for incubation and making recommendations to the board on projects that should be admitted into incubation.
    • Appointing mentors for incubation projects.
    • Reviewing progress of projects against incubation requirements, and recommending projects for full project status to the board, when deemed appropriate.
    • Reporting on the status of projects in incubation and the incubation process to the board periodically (via Chair).
    • Preparing and recommending incubation process and criteria to the board.

The OSGeo incubation committee is not responsible for graduated OSGeo Projects. Graduated OSGeo projects are recognized as a committee who report directly to the board via their project officer.

Supporting project teams

If you would like your software project to listed on the website, or apply to become an OSGeo Community project, please send a description of your project to the OSGeo Incubation Committee Mailing List.

We look forward to helping you!

Responsibility Website Listing OSGeo Community OSGeo Project

- README or project description


- User guide or quickstart

Free or Open Source License

- See

Free or Open Source License

- Check headers

Free or Open Source License

- Providence Review


- See


- History of pull requests or patches



Open Community

- communication channel
- decision making process

Active Healthy Community

- user and developer collaboration
- long term viability

Development Process

- version control
- issue tracker
- leadership open to new members
- transparent decision making


- user documentation
- developer documentation

Release Procedure

- release process
- documented testing process

Foundation Resources Website Listing OSGeo Community OSGeo Project
website project list X X X
website choose-a-project X X X
OSGeo Live X X X
Marketing Collateral X X
Representation project officer
infrastructure and facilities X X
promotion & marketing X X
budget osgeo board project budget
fundraising X X

Financial support

The incubation process establishes a project as a full fledged OSGeo committee, with a project project officer, with direct access to OSGeo treasurer, and reporting to the board during annual general meeting.

While Community projects are not recognized as an independent committee, the OSGeo board maintains an "OSGeo Community" initiative with budget to support your activities. Attend one of the OSGeo board monthly meetings, or ask on the board mailing list, if your project has an activity that can benefit from financial support.

For more information see osgeo_financial_guidence.pdf


Community Project
OSGeo Community Project OSGeo Project

Step 1: Add OSGeo Website Project Page

To be listed on the OSGeo website:

  1. Be geospatial
    • Confirm by checking README or project description
  2. Have a free license or open source license
    • The license must be OSI approved
  3. Welcome participation and new contributors.
    • We look for a clear contribution policy

If you have questions about the above, or would like guidance on setting up your open source project, please reach out to us.

Here is an example email request (mailing list sign up required):

subject: water topology api
Incubation committee:
I would like to ask permission to to list my project "water topology api" on the OSGeo website in order to share my work with more people!
The project is built on PostGIS topology providing a REST API to help with watershed analysis and maintenance.
The repository is located here: released using GPL license.
My OSGeo userid is "atlantis" and I will need permission to create a project page.

Step 2: Join Community Projects Program

Projects applying to the *OSGeo Community* program are asked to:

  1. Be geospatial
    • Confirm by checking README or project description
    • project page on the osgeo website
    • We ask projects have some user documentation, for example an OSGeo Live quickstart
  2. Have a free license or an open source license.
    • The license must be OSI approved
    • We ask that the project team check the file headers and double check the license has been appropriately applied
  3. Welcome participation and new contributors.
    • We look for a clear contribution policy
    • We ask that the project demonstrate collaboration, perhaps with a history of bug report or pull requests
    • Projects are required to have a code of conduct

OSGeo provides code of conduct guidance, many projects selecting contribution covenant).

OSGeo Community Projects can take part in the incubation committee for guidance on open source use, setting up project governance, promoting the project, and building the project community. We look forward to working with you. For sensitive topics (patents, copyright, trademarks, and license) you wish to attend a video meeting.

Here is an example email request (mailing list sign up required):

subject: water topology community project application
Incubation committee:
The Water Topology project would like to apply to join the OSGeo community program. We recently re-branded to just "water topology" to reflect client libraries being include in our project. The project provides web services built on PostGIS topology to help with watershed analysis and maintenance.
The osgeo project page is available here: and our user guide is located at .
The repository remains at with GPL license, contribution policy and code of conduct. We have checked our source code to ensure GPL license has been correctly applied. Our issue tracker is active, and we have received a number of merge-requests.
Thank you for your consideration and we look forward to your questions!

Step 3: Incubation process and Graduation

The *OSGeo Project* designation is intended to recognize established projects with a diverse community of developers and users with a proven track record.

To be recognized as an *OSGeo Project* a project team applies for the OSGeo incubation program. Successful projects are teamed up with an experienced open source mentor to help answer questions, obtain legal council, and help guide work on transparency and community development as required.

Although incubation is a lot of work, this is opportunity for project teams to grow and improve and be publicly recognized for their accomplishment.

To be recognized as an *OSGeo Project* we ask that project teams excel in each of areas mentioned above, see graduation checklist or the comparison table on this page for more detail.

The OSGeo incubation process takes place in three stages:

  1. Initial Application
    1. Application request
    2. Mentor volunteer
  2. Incubator
    1. Project Status: project details, and a few resourcing questions for the system admin committee (see Project Status Template).
    2. Provenance Review: project team check to ensure the project is open source and has permission to distribute its source code.
    3. Project team and mentor work on graduation checklist priorities
  3. Graduation
    1. Mentor recommends project for graduation with motion to the incubation committee
    2. Committee chair informs the OSGeo board, who appoints the project team as a newly formed OSGeo committee


The following projects are currently in OSGeo incubation. The links provided are used to track the progress of incubation projects and are used by the developer team (and OSGeo mentor). In many cases the links will take you to a project specific wiki or website in order to be closer to their target community.

When projects have completed the graduation checklist their mentor will recommend them to the Incubation committee for graduation.



  1. IstSOS Provenance Review
  2. IstSOS Incubation Status
  3. Mentor: Jeff McKenna



  1. Opticks Incubation Status
  2. no provenance review provided
  3. Opticks Incubation Checklist
  4. Mentor: Mark Lucas



  1. Oskari Incubation Application
  2. Oskari Incubation Status
  3. Oskari Graduation Checklist
  4. Mentor: Arnulf Christl

TEAM Engine

TEAM Engine:

  1. Incubation Application from 2012
  2. TEAM Engine Incubation Checklist
  3. Mentor: Jody Garnett




The following status and provenance documents are for historical purposes, and are no longer actively maintained.

The initial projects to go through the incubation process helped define what is required. The above pages tracked the progress (and capture the experience) of these projects.


The following projects did not complete incubation:

Committee Operation

The incubation committee operates within the OSGeo committee guidelines, operating in a close working relationship with the OSGeo board as reflected in our responsibilities above.

  • Voting members: Voting members are maintained on this page as outlined below. This committee is volunteer based with committee member ship driven by email request to be added or removed. Inactive members (see below) are removed as needed to preserve committee function.
  • Project mentors: Have volunteered to represent our organization at a personal level as a guest on the projects email list and meetings. Project mentors are responsible for recommending when a project is ready for graduation based on this first hand experience. For more information see mentor guidelines.
  • Committee chair: Committee chair appointed by motion, result forward to the board for approval and recognition as an officer of the foundation. Committee chair is responsible for operation of the committee.
  • Communication: This committee operates on the incubator mailing list. With the occasional breakout IRC meeting, hangout, or phone call to explore specific issues.
  • Decision making: Decision making is performed by email motion. Motions are held open for a two week period. Each motion requires a 50% quorum within the two week period. Voting consists of +1 (approval), +0 (slight agreement), -0 (slight disagreement), -1 (against). The committee chair is responsible for replying to the email thread with voting results and motion resolution.
    • Email motions should be clearly worded and have a subject line “Motion:”.
    • Motions are held open for a two week period to give everyone a chance to respond, this accounts for volunteers that are only available on weekends.
    • At discretion of the chair a motion may be held open longer than two weeks.
    • If a motion does not gather a 50% response within a two week period we may need to revisit our active member list – removing members that have not voted within the last year.
    • Voting +0 and -0 are a good way to reach quorum for volunteers that have not had a chance to follow the discussion.
    • There is no veto in the incubation committee, but we tend to respect -1 votes and withdraw motions that are divisive. It is noted that when reviewing graduation checklists -1 votes tend to track outstanding issues that are then addressed within the voting period.
  • Independence: Our mandate is focused on providing to the OSGeo board as outlined above.

Example email:

 Subject: motion: accept project x as a community project
 The following motion has been made by Firstname Lastname:
   Motion to accept project x as an community project.
 This motion is held open for two weeks closing MONTH DAY, requiring 50% quorum,
 from the following incubation committee members:

A subsequent email will be sent when the motion is completed, either by the elapsed time period, or by unanimous consent before the closing period.

Committee Members

Volunteers Welcome - if you would like to take part we are always looking for new members, sign up to the email list, and introduce yourself to volunteer.

Current members:

Thank you - we ask that volunteers remain active, joining the discussion and voting on the email list. If you are unable to take part please send us an email. As volunteers we understand that life can get in the way of advocacy – you are welcome to rejoin at any time. We will also retire inactive members as needed. Prior members:

  • Bruce Bannerman
  • Landon Blake
  • Robert Bray
  • Howard Butler
  • Chris Holmes
  • Julien-Samuel Lacroix
  • Mark Lucas
  • Judit Mays
  • Jeff McKenna
  • Markus Neteler
  • Markus Schneider
  • Cameron Shorter
  • Paul Spencer
  • Jeroen Ticheler
  • Norman Vine


Draft or discussion documents

Document Refresh 2014




Meetings and Reports

Meetings are scheduled via Mailing List and take place via IRC at the times specified in the Foundation Calendar.