Operating Guidelines


The Open Model for Citizen Engagement has three levels of membership that maintain its activities. The Executive Body and Advisory Body are paid memberships, while the Community is free and open to anyone. Check out the membership rules for the Bodies or join the Community here.

The Executive Body is limited to 30 organizations working in the space, so the application and approval process is fairly strict. The Executive Body guides the direction of the organization, establishes the Working Groups, and is ultimately responsible for the work of the Open Model.

Members of the Advisory Board participate in the Working Groups and provide advise and broader knowledge for the work of the Open Model. The Advisory Board is open to any organization or individual that is committed to a future with legitimate and reliable communication between citizens and their elected officials.

The Community is composed of the rest of the stakeholders in citizen engagement. This of course means that everyone is welcome, because everyone stands to benefit from the work of the Open Model. The Working Groups often hold open discussions on the website where members of the Community are welcome to participate and help focus or advance their efforts.

Official details on the operation of the Executive Body are below:

Executive Body Guidelines


The Executive Body is composed of a maximum of 30 organizations that are committed to establishing a new paradigm of communications between citizens and elected officials. The end goal is a system that legitimately and reliably handles the increased volume of communication that technology has made possible today and into the foreseeable future.


The initial executive body is composed of the Open Forum Foundation (Wayne Moses Burke) and those organizations that attended the Workshop: Creating GREAT Citizen Engagement Software on April 7th and 8th, 2010 in Washington, DC. They are:

New members may be added to the Executive Body by applying and being approved by a simple majority of the current members of the body and payment of applicable dues.


Decisions taken on behalf of the executive body require the approval of a simple majority of the members. This may be by vote or agreement at an in-person meeting or by electronic recording including email or other means by which identity may reasonably be verified. Each member receives one vote.
This document may be amended by the same mechanism, provided that seven days’ notification is provided to all members.


The Executive Body:

  • establishes Working Groups, including their mandates, goals, and deadlines;
  • creates and maintains documents that describe the new paradigm;
  • retains full editorial control over these documents (any disagreements are settled by a majority vote);
  • spreads the concepts developed in these documents;
  • manages the creation of standards and connecting technology to implement the new paradigm;
  • grows the community that will adopt and implement the new paradigm; and
  • publicly releases any standards or technology developed by the community within 60 days.

Individual members:

  • participate in the activities of the Executive Body.

Failure to participate substantially or attend meetings may result in loss of membership. After the third consecutive missed official meeting, a secret ballot shall be initiated to vote on retention of the offending member. This vote requires a simple majority for passage and the offending member may not participate in the vote. It shall be completed and the member notified prior to the next meeting.

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