OGC’S New Board Reflects Consortium’s Expanding Global Role

By David Schell

On January 23, 2005, the OGC Planning Committee completed its biennial election of directors.In expanding the board and selecting the new slate of directors, the officers and board have made a concerted effort to provide the leadership and breadth of perspective required to expand into more diverse regional and application markets.The diversity of international representation has broadened, with new directors representing both technology users and technology providers.There is better representation of technologies other than traditional GIS - imaging and web services, in particular.And there are more directors, with a higher percentage representing the public sector.

Besides becoming more global in its composition and expanding the application focus of the organization, the new, expanded board is positioned to become a more active force within the Consortium.The directors have committed to provide, through individual advocacy and committee work, active support for OGC business and outreach programs, and for resource planning and creation of strategic relationships.They are also well aware that OGC is a consensus based organization, and they are all experienced executives accustomed to pushing for consensus that leads to effective action.

By expanding the Board with additional talent and world wide representation, a strategic focus is now in place to emphasize global outreach and significantly increase the Consortium's awareness and uptake potential.With these additional resources the OGC board will be organizing to address such issues as business development, strategic planning, globalization and finance more actively than has been possible in the past, to implement more effective leadership for the OGC community.

The intention is to create a dynamic structure that passes considerable leadership to the individual directors and better integrates planning at the Board level with the operational processes of the Consortium.

Those familiar with OGC's current technical activities know that the membership is moving beyond GIS and imaging into areas such as: service chaining; vehicle information, telematics and location services; information interoperability and the Spatial Semantic Web; management of geospatial digital rights, lineage, and online ordering; enterprise architecture; CAD/AEC/GIS integration; and Sensor Web Enablement (SWE). Never have we had more content-full and well attended Technical Committee and Planning Committee meetings than we had last week at the United Nations in New York City.

As experienced executives, all the OGC directors can appreciate the value of this high level of technical activity but they also understand that "going to the next level" doesn't happen through technology alone. We are at the critical stage of "crossing the chasm" from scattered early adoption of our interoperability technologies to widespread adoption of them.This transition is even more critical for a standards consortium than for a product company.The most well-crafted open specifications in the world are useless if no one uses them.That's why outreach and uptake are so important.I am confident that we can, with the leadership of our new directors, meet this challenge.

I invited you to review the biographies of the OGC directors.

Published Wednesday, February 23rd, 2005

Written by David Schell

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