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Change in project governance structure for Autoware projects

Recently the Autoware projects (Autoware.AI and Autoware.Auto) have gained some important long-term contributors and started making good progress to being more structured (for Autoware.AI) and more active (for Autoware.Auto).

@esteve and I have discussed the overall way we are running these projects, and the current issues facing us, and decided that we need to adopt a new governance structure that encourages more contributions while also distributing the heavy load of maintaining these projects, deciding road maps, detailing issues, etc. to people who have proven a commitment to the projects.

The governance structure we have chosen is inspired by (actually it mostly copies) the Apache Foundation’s approach. It consists of:

  • The Technical Steering Committee (TSC; a pre-existing entity in the Autoware Foundation), which has oversight of the technical direction of Autoware Foundation activities.
  • Project Management Committees (PMCs), which are each responsible for managing a project. They generally do not do much other than making sure the committers are working, promoting contributors to committers, and making reports to the TSC.
  • Committers, a group of contributors who have proven their commitment to the project and in return receive permission to help maintain it, determine road maps, release schedules, etc.
  • Contributors, the average person contributing anything to the project as they see fit.

Initially, because we only have two projects and they are closely related, we are starting with a single PMC handling both. However the initial list of committers for Autoware.AI and Autoware.Auto are slightly different and are based on people who have greatly contributed to each up to now.

Please see this page on the Autoware Foundation’s wiki for more details. This wiki page will be expanded over time as we figure out further details of how to make this structure work for us.