Background and history#

This is a brief history of the Executable Books project, written with the intention of encoding the provenance and rationale behind our current governance structure.

The Executable Books project began as a grant-funded collaboration between groups at The Australian National University, Northern Arizona University, and The University of California at Berkeley. These teams represented many open source projects in the scientific community, such as QuantEcon, QIIME 2, and The Jupyter Project. This group followed a traditional Principal Investigator model where the vast majority of development on the project came from dedicated time paid for by the grant.

Towards the end of the grant, the team discussed ways to create more pathways for community participation and leadership on the project, and to transition towards more co-creation of a broader group of people, rather than being driven primarily by one grant-funded team. The team also explore potential organizational homes for the project so that it could grow a multi-stakeholder community around it.

The Team Compass is the first document that formally encodes the governance and policy of the project. It defines a Steering Council that is comprised of the Principle Investigators of the original grant, and a minimal set of policies and processes to allow the team to begin creating a community structure around the project.

The structure and content of this documentation is inspired by many other open communities. In particular, the JupyterHub Team Compass as well as the Jupyter Governance model. It was formally proposed and accepted by the Principal Investigators of the project in this Pull Request.