[foundation-board] CEO Update for December 2015

Karin Christiansen karin at karinchristiansen.org
Sun Dec 20 09:03:09 UTC 2015

Thanks Pavel.   I find these really helpful.  Good news on the fundraising
front and leads.

This one I think is all for info, but if there are areas which are for
action would be great to have them highlighted.

But, perhaps we can help as a board with:

- COO position - if anyone can think of candidates perhaps they can forward
the link?

- Board finance member perhaps similarly

Pavel and I have done a review of his goals for the end of this year, and
have started work on the ones for 2016 which we will let you know about at
the Board meeting in January.


On Friday, 18 December 2015, Pavel Richter <pavel.richter at okfn.org> wrote:

> Dear all,  please find below an update on important developments here at
> Open Knowledge International. You can find the text as a Google Document
> here
> <https://docs.google.com/document/d/1Fq8i18T4CTFDgGwwcmB8LpaTa28HRe7asWWdRFFQCV0/edit#>
> .
> Operations
> Operational Focus for Open Knowledge International
> Topic / theme focus taking priority over geographic for now, while we
> broadcast our vacancies through channels in Sub-Saharan Africa via our
> Ambassadors there as well.
> In terms of our future thematic focus, I had productive meetings with
> Rufus, Sander and Jonathan from within OKI, as well as with a number of
> people from outside the organization. (Martin Tisne from Omidyar, Mark
> Cridge from mySociety.org, Ira Bolychevsky and others). I aim towards
> writing a first draft for a solid Theory of Change in January, to lead the
> discussion on what we want to achieve as an organization. Currently, I am
> not sure to which extend we want and can include our broader community into
> this process.
> Viderum Update
> Viderum has been set up fully, both as an US and an UK based entity.
> Arturas will join Viderum from OKI, and Sebastian has already hired a new
> project manager. The other developers (Brook, Adria, Jo) who are / were
> involved with CKAN decided that they want to stay with OKI as an employer.
> Thexy will, however, continue to be available to Viderum for the
> foreseeable future, to make sure that we continue to deliver on our
> contractual agreements. Going forward, Sebastian will build a team of
> developers based here in Berlin.
> FundingSigrid Rausing Trust
> Rausing accepted our proposal for funding and are awarding Open Knowledge
> International 75,000 GBP of unrestricted funding for 2016.
> Adessium
> Call to introduce and discuss plans for OpenSpending. I will meet with
> them mid-January to discuss new funding opportunities.
> Arnold (Laura and John Arnold Foundation / LJAF)
> Call to introduce and discuss plans for OpenTrials. I plan for a longer
> trip to the US in the first half of 2016, to deepen relationships with
> current funders, as well as visiting potential new ones.
> Kays Foundation
> Early-stage discussions to build shared understanding and consider working
> together in the longer term.
> Others
> Continuing discussions with Open Society-, Bill & Melinda Gates- and
> William and Flora Hewlett Foundations.
> And we will bid on at least two of the upcoming Horizon2020 initiatives of
> the European Union.
> HR / StaffCurrent live vacancies
> Portfolio Manager - Planting the Seeds
> Portfolio Manager - Growing the Trees
> Portfolio Manager - Harvesting the Fruits
> Community Manager - OpenTrials
> Research Assistant - FutureTDM
> Technical Trainer - School of Data
> Project Assistant (one to be hired to support OD4D, other projects may
> also hire for this role)
> Regarding the COO position, which is clearly the most important open
> position: Initially, response was not as good as I hoped for. We then
> decided to advertise more broadly (using monster.com and LinkedIn), which
> got much better resultants than before. We are interviewing candidates
> continuously, but, to be honest,  I do not have seen the ideal candidate,
> yet. That is not to say that he / she is not out there, but it will take
> longer than I want it to take.
> Departures
> Sam Leon will leave at the end of December. I have conducted an exit
> interview with him.
> Changes
> Meg Foulkes has a role specific to the School of Data and a contract
> connected with its funding.
> Daniela Mattern
> The case continues to require a great deal of double-checking and
> clarity-seeking on the part of our legal team due to inaccurate information
> from Mattern’s legal representative (for example, both maternity pay and
> loss of earnings was claimed for the same period, which is not possible).
> We are due to disclose documentation by the 18th Dec, which has already
> been completed, and the final papers for the hearing are due 15th January.
> Financials
> The 2014-15 year end accounts were submitted following Board approval.
> The Board and strategy development process
> The finance Board member advert is live on LinkedIn
> <https://www.linkedin.com/jobs2/view/91791298>, ThirdSector
> <http://jobs.thirdsector.co.uk/job/385829/volunteer-board-member-finance-expertise/>
> and on our own website <https://okfn.org/about/jobs/>.
> As mentioned before, I think it would be great if we (board and CEO) would
> be able to spent some time together in a offsite meeting, to discuss
> organizational directions. I will take this on with Karin to see what the
> best timing for this would be.
> Network
> I keynoted at G20 conference “Open Data: Enabling Inclusive, Sustainable
> and Robust Growth”.
> I am in discussion with open Knowledge Spain about an Open Knowledge Award
> in 2016.
> Monthly calls with Chapter leads have been set up and the first went well.
> And I continue my discussions with Open Knowledge Finland on their
> “Mydata” project an how we can support it from an international perspective
> OK Festival: The current status is that we will have a smaller OK
> Festival happening in 2016, either during summer in Berlin (July 2016), or
> around the IODC event in Madrid in October. In 2016, we will focus on skill
> development and skill sharing, through the School of Data Summer Camp, and
> through cooperation with other partners. Mid-term, I would like to develop
> the OKFestival to a broader themed event where community led initiatives as
> well as governments can and want participate. As I said during our last
> meeting, this takes way more preparation time, so it will only happen in
> 2017. But to ensure continuity, and to answer inquiries from communities
> and partners, I think having a more focused OKFestival in 2016 makes sense.
> As an organisation, we are able to put this together.
> The next in person meeting is on 13th January 2016 in London at Canonical.
> I will send the next CEO Update in the middle of February 2016.
> The resolution regarding Charitable Status passed the board unanimous,
> and our lawyers are handing in the necessary paperwork.
> International employment: At our last meeting in November, I indicate
> that I will have a solution before the end of this year. I apologize that
> this is not happening faster. I have now identified a law firm based in
> Berlin suitable to supporting me in this matter. I will get a response from
> their lawyer late this year, early next year and will present a proposal to
> the board in January. I hope to get it done before the board meeting on the
> 13th, but it depends on the solution the lawyers are proposing. If we are
> not able to solve this before / at the meeting, I will inform you about the
> details during the meeting and ask for approval by mail afterwards.
> Support for Rufus: One of my commitments for the end of this year was to
> set up Rufus new role, and enable him to fulfill it. Besides him and me
> agreeing on his new role (which has been done couple of months ago and is
> going smoothly), OKI will provide him with support to develop his new role
> as THE spokesperson for Openness out there. I have contacted two
> storytellers I have worked with previous, in order to give Rufus support on
> working on a great narrative, storyline, and presentation. This is all set
> up by now, and I am awaiting Rufus decision on which of the storytellers I
> suggested he will work with.
> I have a task to develop a revised reserve policy for board approval
> (based on feedback from our last meeting) before the end of the year. While
> I am working on it right now, I think it will be ready for distribution
> only early in January.
> I hope this format works for you; i*t would be great to get feedback from
> the board on these reports*, so that I can provide you with the
> information that you require.
> I wish you all Marry Christmas, great and relaxing holidays, and I am
> looking forward to 2016!
> --
> Kind regards
> Pavel Richter
> Open Knowledge International



Karin Christiansen

karin at karinchristiansen.org



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