2. Governance mechanism

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The governance mechanism is designed to implement the open change management process in order to achieve a controlled change of the SRF.

2.1        Governance structure

The following governance structure is proposed:

·        Steering Committee (SC) – SRF Coordination Group. The SC consists of members of the European Commission’s services and members of other European Institutions. In addition, representatives of Member States (MSs) will be involved. The SC performs the following functions:

a.      It ensures continuity and consistency on the basis of the general directions set by the European Commission

b.      It is aware of activities and progress

c.      It endorses the new releases of the SRF

·        Governance Committee (GC) – SRF Programme Management. The GC is the maintenance and supervisory organisation for the SRF. It mainly consists of members of the ISA2 Programme but can include members of other European Commission services. In the context of this role, the GC performs the following functions:

a.      It organises the activities for the maintenance of the SRF, safeguards the proper execution of the maintenance process and funds the Operational Team

b.      It identifies the need for a revision of the SRF, based on Requests For Change (RFCs) received from stakeholders and initial analysis of the RFCs by the Operational Team

c.      It approves new releases of the SRF for endorsement by the SC and the Operational Team (OT)

·        Operational Team (OT) – contractors. This is composed of a single team that carries out the day-to-day work. In the case of the SRF, the OT usually consists of contractors, under the guidance and responsibility of the GC. The OT performs the following functions:

a.      It monitors the RFCs from stakeholders submitted on Joinup

b.      It advises the GC on the nature of the change requests, e.g. whether the change is clear and relevant for the SRF, and whether it is an editorial change, a change on supporting instruments or a major change (see section 2.4)

c.      It documents the resolution of the RFCs in a new release of the SRF, either by applying an editorial change or by incorporating changes agreed and approved by the GC and the SC

d.      It updates the online repository of suggested supporting instruments provided by the stakeholders

·        Stakeholders – public administrations, businesses and actors involved in providing IT solutions. Stakeholders might be implementers of the SRF or simply individuals that are interested in its application. Stakeholders might provide their insights and recommendations on the text and form of the SRF via Joinup in the form of issues.

2.2        Public announcement

The governance mechanism requires that all potential stakeholders be informed about the possibilities to participate, e.g. as contributors or reviewers and about the processes that govern the management of the SRF. To that end, announcements of the start of a release cycle (see section 2.6) are posted on Joinup.

2.3        Issue tracker and transparency

Information about all processed events, including RFCs and resolutions, will be made public on the Joinup platform through the issue tracker function.

The issue tracker will manage and maintain lists of all the submitted RFCs and their status in one centralised working place, providing transparency by holding all the vital information for the RFCs and the reporters (stakeholders).

2.4        Types of changes

There are three types of changes considered in the change management process:

·        Editorial changes

An editorial change is a correction of an error/mistake in the SRF or an additional clarification of an aspect that may not have been well specified.

·        Changes on the supporting instruments

A change on the supporting instruments occurs when stakeholders introduce new supporting instruments. This change comprises 2 steps:

o   The online documentation of supporting instruments recommended by the stakeholders.

o   The official inclusion of new supporting instruments in the next release of the SRF.

·        Major changes on generic recommendations, detailed recommendations, and recommended measures for central bodies

This type of change occurs when fundamental aspects of the SRF are affected. For example, if a new generic recommendation or a recommended measure for central bodies is added or deleted and if existing recommendations are updated (e.g. changes to the content or the underlying message of a recommendation). Such changes typically affect the SRF as a whole and therefore a specific roll-out plan is needed to ensure that all the necessary changes are applied to the SRF.

2.5       Decision mechanism

For editorial changes, the Governance Committee (GC) takes a decision based on a proposal from the OT.

For the changes that involve more stakeholders and the Steering Committee (SC), the decision process relies on two pillars:

·        Approval: Based on majority vote, the updated SRF is approved by the SC on proposal from the GC.

·        Appeal: In the specific case when a stakeholder considers that the process has not been followed properly, or that the stakeholder’s opinions have not been taken into account properly, the stakeholder has the possibility to lodge a formal appeal to the SC. The SC reviews its decision taking into account the overall strategy and objectives of the ISA2 Programme.

2.6        Release cycle

The three types of changes are processed in the same release cycle, starting with the processing of the RFCs and ending with the publication of a revised version (new release) of the SRF.

Requests can be submitted by public administrations, businesses, and the wider community continuously via Joinup. As soon as RFCs are received, they are classified by the OT as one of the three types of changes.

Once per year, the submitted RFCs for all the three types of changes are collected and processed as described in section 3.2. RFCs submitted from that moment on will only be considered during the following release cycle in order to ensure careful evaluation and implementation of all requests.

The OT implements editorial changes processed along with the changes on supporting instruments and the major changes.

The resulting release is numbered (X+1).0, e.g. 2.0, 3.0 etc.

If, at the scheduled time for a particular release, only editorial requests have been submitted, a new release of the SRF can still be taken into account. If, for example, no requests for supporting instruments and major changes have been received, there may still be a release with editorial changes with release number (X+1).0, e.g. 2.0, 3.0 etc. If, in the period leading up to the planned date for a new release, no changes have been received, a new release will not take place.

Every new release cycle will be announced on Joinup.

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