Governance of the CORD® project is intended to foster a technical meritocracy within the context of stewardship by the CORD Chief Architect and the ON.Lab Board of Directors. ON.Lab is a nonprofit public benefit corporation, and provides engineering resources on behalf of the CORD Project.


The goals of CORD project governance are to:

  • Provide an environment that thrives on technical meritocracy. Merit is based on technical contribution, not on financial contribution.
  • Have strong technical vision and shepherding. This ensures architectural integrity of the codebase.
  • Provide a framework for CORD teams and projects – how they are started, how they are managed, how members are elected, how conflicts are resolved, how they are disbanded when no longer needed.
  • Be clear on how CORD software evolves – how code is added to (or removed from) the project.
  • Be clear on how decisions are made and conflicts resolved in the community.
  • Make it easy for community members to participate.
  • Avoid bureaucracy.
  • Create a great codebase.


The principles of CORD governance are in line with these community values:

  • Serve our Customers.
  • Practice true Meritocracy.
  • Operate with Transparency.
  • Strive for Quality, consistently.
  • Value and enable Innovation.
  • Respect others in all Interactions.

In addition, the over-arching governance principle is To act in the best interest of the broader community.

Governance Structure

Two steering teams and a board of directors govern the CORD project. The two teams are the technical steering team and the community team.

CORD Board

The board is a group of representatives from the partner organizations. It is governed by the Chairman of the Board (the “Chairman”). The board has the following roles and responsibilities:

The board leaves all technical decisions to the technical steering team in the spirit of open source technical meritocracy practice.

The governance document for the board can be found here.

Steering Teams

Two steering teams govern the CORD project.

Technical Steering Team

The technical steering team is responsible for all technical decisions in the project. It is responsible for the content and structure of the code base and for all technical priorities with respect to the code base. The CORD chief architect (“Chief Architect”) is the team lead of the technical steering team. The ON.Lab board of directors reserves the right to remove and replace the Chief Architect at any time.

Technical Steering Team Page

Community Steering Team

The community steering team is responsible for the care and feeding of the community. It is responsible to address community issues, to grow the community and to make sure that the community thrives. The voting community elects the community steering team lead. The ON.Lab board of directors reserves the right to approve or veto this selection, and to appoint the team lead.

Community Steering Team Page

Governance Details