Interim Board Meeting: Oct 14, 2014

This post originally appeared on the Software Carpentry website.

Software Carpentry Foundation Interim Board Meeting: Oct 14, 2014


  • Jenny Bryan (Univ of British Columbia)
  • Josh Greenberg (Sloan Foundation)
  • Katy Huff (UC Berkeley)
  • Damien Irving (University of Melbourne)
  • Neil Chue Hong (Software Sustainability Institute)
  • Adam Stone (Berkeley Lab)
  • Tracy Teal (Michigan State / Data Carpentry)
  • Kaitlin Thaney (Mozilla Science Lab, audio only)
  • Greg Wilson (Software Carpentry)
  • David Ascher (Mozilla) - on Etherpad, but not on call


  • Board: next meeting on Tue Nov 4 (same time)
  • Board: submit corrections/extensions to governance doc via pull requests by Oct 24
  • DI + GW + NCH + KT: define process for communication and issue escalation among workshop coordinators
  • KT + JG + JB + NCH: talk about GW's salary from Nov 1
  • AS + KH: arrange AS access to GitHub repositories
  • JB + KH: transfer ownership of draft grants material to Software Carpentry board group
  • GW: find out how much notice we need to give NumFOCUS to have a rep attend a board meeting
  • GW: re-add note to governance doc about SCF board deciding scope of SWC project
  • GW: circulate minutes from last two meetings for approval before putting in public repository


  • KH + TT + GW will be signatores on the NumFOCUS FSA
  • Documents stored in two GitHub repositories
  • Public (things go here by default): /board
  • Private: /board_pvt
  • Send minutes to board mailing list for correction/redaction of personal information
  • Put into public repository one week after meeting
  • Escalation
  • Workshop coordinators promote issues to project lead as needed
  • Project lead promotes to board as needed
  • Coordinators may go directly to the board if they feel it appropriate


  • Date of next meeting
  • GW: propose Tue Nov 4 3:30 EDT
    • NCH: may not be able to do it
  • passes: if NCH is unable to make it, choose a chair closer to the day
  • Final approval for signing up with NumFOCUS
  • KH, TT, GW as signatories
  • passes
  • Mechanics of storing SCF documents (KH)
  • Public Repo : /board
    • minutes will hold summaries of the chat window
  • Private Repo : /board_pvt
  • Board Team :
  • Procedure for when we make things public?
    • e.g. minutes
    • Once there is a milestone version, we can introduce a period of review on the listhost
    • After a week of discussion on the listhost, things will become public.
    • passes
  • Should grants stuff go in board_pvt?
    • Probably not but once we have time to discuss this (probably not today) we can tackle that.
  • Discussion of governance and core vs non-core activities
  • Re-add note about board deciding scope of Software Carpentry (what's in/what's out)
  • Do we think that it is useful to have a NumFOCUS rep observe at the Board meetings?
    • NumFocus have offered to attend Board meetings
  • Do we need the governance document to be in particular format (for legal reasons)?
    • Yes, soon but not immediately
  • Who fights copyright / trademark ?
    • NumFOCUS (because they will own the trademarks)
  • Q: what can/should be handled by admin staff like Arliss, what needs to be pushed up to the board?
  • proposal: admins promote to the project lead as needed, project lead promotes to the board as needed, admins encouraged to go direct to the board if they feel appropriate
  • passes
  • Discussion of budget
  • Josh: "SCF = steward of the public goods for SWC". Institutional partners contribute to SCF to support that.
  • Who organises the "special" workshops, like WiSE workshops? (or little efforts by, say, grad students, who don't have easy access to funding streams or event coordination abilities)
    • Does a central "workshop coordinator of last resort" need to paid by taxing institutional contributors?
    • Are there any funders who would support this? Possibly not?
    • why would institutions be happier paying for program management than for coordination?
  • Can we make it so that institutional partner contributions aren't calculated such that early contributors don't end up paying more because they are subsidising the lack of other contributors?

  • From the chat:
  • DI: Whatever happened to each individual workshop giving money for core?
    • GW: we've been asking for donations - hasn't been particularly successful
  • JB: Re: a donation to support a specific workshop, how do we feel about a donation to support development of curriculum for specific topic?
    • DI: At UniMelb we are getting money from the Australian National Data Service to develop capstone examples using Australian data
  • DI: Does [organization's] contribution to the 'core' have to be money?
    • GW: alternatives?
    • DI: Not sure. I just know that [some orgs] will probably not want to contribute money to core.
    • JG: the only "in kind" support to core budget lines according to my strict definition would be salary for the project leads (not workshop coordination)
  • TT: I'm a little concerned that all workshop coordination is being 'outsourced' to institutional partners, and it makes it hard to coordinate as a whole
  • JB: It would be hard to get grant money to SWCF to support workshop coordination. That should be for curriculum development and advocacy.
  • DI: At what point do you become an institution that is doing so much SWC stuff that they should start giving money? 3 workshops a year? More? Less?
  • GW: overhead to ramp up on workshop coordination machinery is (unfortunately) considerable at the moment, so volunteers stepping in to coordinate a workshop now and again is impractical

Dialogue & Discussion

Comments must follow our Code of Conduct.

Edit this page on Github