Requirements for Open IESG Positions
July 19, 2007
From: NomCom Chair <firstname.lastname@example.org>
To: IETF Announcement list <email@example.com>
Date: July 19, 2007
Subject: Requirements for Open IESG Positions
RFC 3777 says the following about the qualifications required for open IESG/IAB positions: "The IESG and IAB are responsible for providing summary of the expertise desired of the candidates selected for their respective open positions to the Executive Director. The summaries are provided to the nominating committee for its consideration. 2. The nominating committee selects candidates based on its understanding of the IETF community's consensus of the qualifications required and advises each confirming body of its respective candidates." The following is the information provided by the IESG to the nomcom. The nomcom is now accepting the community's input on the qualifications required for the open IESG positions. Please send your notes, either as commentary on the following or independent notes to nomcom07 at ietf.org. Thank you. best regards, Lakshminath This note describes the expertise desired in the candidates selected to fill the positions of the IESG members whose terms will expire during the first IETF Meeting in 2008. Under the Nominations Committee (NomCom) procedures defined in RFC 3777, the IESG is responsible for providing a summary of the expertise desired of the candidates selected for open IESG positions. This information is included below, and is suitable for publication to the community, along with the NomCom request for nominations. We realize that this is a long list of demanding qualifications, and that no one person will be able meet all of the requirements for a specific position. We trust that the NomCom will weigh all of these qualifications and choose IESG members who represent the best possible balance of these qualifications. GENERIC REQUIREMENTS IESG members are the managers of the IETF standards process. They they must understand the way the IETF works, be good at working with other people, be able to inspire and encourage other people to work together as volunteers, and have sound technical judgment about IETF technology and its relationship to technology developed elsewhere. Area Directors (ADs) select and directly manage the Working Group (WG) chairs, so IESG members should possess sufficient interpersonal and management skills to manage 15 to 30 part-time people. Most ADs are also responsible for one or more directorate or review teams. The ability to identify good leaders and technical experts, and then recruit them for IETF work is important. Having been a WG chair helps understand the WG chair role, and it will help when trying to resolve problems and issues that a WG chair may have. In addition, all IESG members should have strong technical expertise that crosses two or three IETF areas. Ideally, an IESG member would have made significant technical contributions in more than one IETF area, preferably authoring documents and/or chairing WGs in more than one area. (ADs are expected to personally review every Internet-Draft that they sponsor. For other Internet-Drafts, ADs must be satisified that adequate review has taken place.) It is very helpful for an IESG member to have a good working knowledge of the IETF document process and WG creation and chartering process. This knowledge is most likely to be found in experienced IETF WG chairs, but may also be found in authors of multiple documents. IESG members must also have strong verbal and written communications skills. They must have a proven track record of leading and contributing to the consensus of diverse groups. IESG members must deal with many technical topics, so a strong technical background is required, but an IESG members should also have strong management and communication skills. An IESG member should guide WGs to follow their charters and nurture new talent to fulfil IETF leadership roles in the future. A FEW COMMENTS ON THE IESG ROLE Serving on the IESG requires a substantial time commitment. The basic IESG activities consume between 25 and 40 hours per week (varying by area and by month, with the most time required immediately before IETF meetings). Most IESG members also participate in additional IETF leadership activities, further increasing the time commitment for those individuals. Even if they do not occupy formal liaison positions, ADs may also need to interact with external bodies such as other standards development organizations (SDOs), which may require travel. It is also imperative that IESG members attend all IETF meetings (typically arriving one or two days early) and attend one, and sometimes two, IESG retreats per year. Because of the large time and travel commitments, employer support for a full two year term is essential. Because of personal impact, including awkwardly timed conference calls, an IESG member's family must also be supportive. APPLICATIONS AREA The Applications Area has historically focused on three clusters of protocols. The first cluster contains application protocols that have been ubiquitous for some time but which continue to develop (e.g., email and the web). The second cluster contains protocols which are used for Internet infrastructure (e.g., epp and iris). The third cluster contains "building block" protocols which are designed for re-use in a variety of more specific applications (e.g., LDAP). Current working groups include topics such as: email, calendaring, web protocols, blogging, directories, registries, language support, and user-interface-level communications. The Applications Area often discusses whether something is properly the realm of the IETF or "belongs" to other SDOs. Because of this, an Applications AD needs to be willing and able to relate to a wide range of non-IETF organizations. An Applications AD is also trusted to make these critical decisions about the scope of the IETF's work. The Applications Area often re-uses technology developed elsewhere, and it often must consider whether the IETF or another SDO is the best home for proposed work. Because of this, and Applications AD needs to be willing and able to relate to a wide range of non-IETF organizations. Because of the breadth of the Applications Area, an Application AD will have to deal with a large set of Internet applications protocols, including many with which he or she may not have direct experience. An Applications AD needs to be good at evaluating new approaches to new problems and assessing the expertise of the people who bring them to the IETF. Because the set of people in the Applications Area changes with the protocols under development at the time, the ability to clearly explain how the IETF works, and to help new WGs work well within the IETF framework is also important. The Applications Area most often intersects with, and sometimes swaps WGs or work items with, the Security Area, the RAI Area, and the Transport Area, so cross-area expertise in any of these areas would be particularly useful. INTERNET AREA The primary technical areas covered by the Internet Area include: IP (both v4 and v6), Layer 2 and 3 VPNs (and related MPLS issues), DNS, Host and Router Configuration, DHCP, Mobility, Multihoming, Identifier-Locator Separation, Network Access Control, and various link-layer technologies. The Internet Area is also responsible for specifying how IP will run over new link layer protocols as they are defined. Between them, the Internet ADs are expected to have a solid understanding of these technologies, including issues related to IP addressing, forwarding, tunneling, and fragmentation. The Internet Area has one of the broadest ranges of technical topics. It has been typical of the Internet Area to have its two ADs divide the topics they specialize in, because it is too much to expect that both ADs will have a very strong command of all topics in the Area. To assist them, there are active Mobility, DNS, and IP directorates. However, the NomCom should consider the skills of the sitting Internet AD and look for technical balance with even more care than in other Areas. With the large number of WGs, the Internet Area is likely to require full-time attention. The Internet Area intersects most frequently with the Routing, Operations & Management, and Security Areas. Interaction with the Routing Area concentrates mainly on IP Forwarding, Multicast, and MPLS issues. With the Operations & Management Area the focus is on MIB development and AAA- based network access control mechanisms. With the Security area the focus is on topics such as DNS security, EAP, and network access control. Cross-area expertise in any of these Areas would be particularly useful. OPERATIONS & MANAGEMENT AREA The primary technical areas covered by the Operations & Management Area include: Network Management, AAA, and various operational issues facing the Internet such as DNS operations, IPv6 operations, and Routing operations. Unlike most IETF Areas, the Operations & Management Area is logically divided into two separate functions: Network Management and Operations. Rob Bonica is currently responsible for the Operations portion of the OPS area, and NomCom will select a person who will be responsible for the Management portion of the OPS area. Specific expertise required for this open position would include a strong understanding of Internet management and AAA and of the related protocols, including but not limited to SNMP, SMI, RADIUS, Diameter, Netconf, and CAPWAP. Another important role of the Management AD is to identify potential or actual management issues regarding IETF protocols and documents in all areas, and to work with the other Areas to resolve those issues. This requires a strong understanding of how new and updated protocols should be managed, including aspects related to configuration, monitoring and alarms. It also requires a good understanding of the operational environment and a strong cross-area understanding of IETF protocol architecture and technologies. The Management portion of the OPS area intersects with all Areas, specifically in reviewing and assisting with documents related to management or AAA aspects (for example documents defining MIB modules or usage of RADIUS and Diameter). Thus, cross-area expertise in any Area would be useful. Security of network management is a particularly current topic. REAL-TIME APPLICATIONS AND INFRASTRUCTURE AREA The Real-Time Applications and Infrastructure Area develops protocols and architectures for delay-sensitive interpersonal communications. Work in this area serves an industry whose applications and services include voice and video over IP, instant messaging, and presence. These applications and services are "real-time" in the sense described in RFC 1889. The infrastructure applications needed to support real-time interpersonal communication are also part of the RAI Area, as are discussions of operational concerns specific to these protocols. For example, work might relate to presence services, to session signaling protocols and emergency call routing solutions, or to work on the "layer five" issues for Internet telephony. Like all Areas of the IETF, the RAI Area draws on the work of numerous other Areas, and as such there cannot be knife edge boundaries delineating the work in the RAI Area from the rest of the IETF. ROUTING AREA The Routing Area is responsible for ensuring continuous operational status of the Internet routing system by maintaining the scalability and stability characteristics of the existing routing protocols, as well as developing new protocols, extensions, and bug fixes in a timely manner. In particular, forwarding methods (such as destination-based unicast and multicast forwarding, and MPLS), as well as associated routing and signalling protocols (e.g., OSPF, IS-IS, BGP, RSVP-TE, PIM) are within the scope of the Routing Area. The Routing Area also works on Generalized MPLS used in the control plane of optical networks and on security aspects of the routing system. A Routing AD is required to have solid knowledge of the Internet routing system, and its operations. A Routing AD must be proficient in at least one of the mainstream routing protocols/technologies such as BGP, OSPF, IS-IS, MPLS, GMPLS, or multicast. Implementation and deployment experience, as well as significant contributions to the WGs in the Routing Area are highly desirable. The Routing Area intersects most frequently with the Internet Area (particularly for IP Forwarding and Multicast), the Operations & Management Area (for MIB development), and the Security Area (for Routing Protocol security). Cross-area expertise in any of those areas would be particularly useful. SECURITY AREA The WGs within the Security Area are primarily focused on security protocols. They provide one or more of the security services: integrity, authentication, non-repudiation, confidentiality, and access control. Since many of the security mechanisms needed to provide these security services are cryptographic, key management is also vital. Security ADs are expected to ensure that all IETF specifications are reviewed for adequate security coverage. They also manage a set of security resources that are available to most IETF Areas and WGs. Specific expertise required for a Security AD includes strong knowledge of IETF security protocols. To complement Tim Polk, the person selected as Security AD should have a working understanding of Kerberos, GSS-API, SASL, and how these relate to security protocols and to their use in applications and other security protocols. A basic understanding of IPsec, IKE, TLS, PKI would also be useful. Also, a Security AD should understand how to weigh the security requirements of a protocol against operational and implementation requirements. We must be pragmatic; otherwise people will not implement and deploy the secure protocols that the IETF standardizes. The Security Area intersects with all other IETF areas, and its ADs are expected to read and understand the security implications of documents in all Areas. Broad knowledge of IETF technologies and the ability to assimilate new information quickly are imperative for a Security AD. TRANSPORT AREA The technical topics covered by the Transport Area are those with data transport goals or with transport design issues and impact on congestion in the Internet. To illustrate the latter: the Pseudowire Emulation Edge to Edge Working Group (PWE3) was initially in Transport Area until the architecture was developed, and then moved to the Internet Area. The major topics in the Transport Area are protocols (TCP, UDP, SCTP, DCCP), congestion control, multicast and forward-error-correction transports, QoS and reservation signaling, DiffServ and congestion control for unresponsive flows, performance metrics, NAT regularization, and NFS. The Transport Area is considering future work in very high bandwidth traffic, interactions between transports and network-layer mobility and multihoming mechanisms as well as new Internet architectures, and experimentation with congestion control schemes developed in the IRTF. A Transport AD should have a good understanding of congestion control, flow control, real-time transport protocols, NAT and firewalls and other transport-level issues that affect application layer protocols. These basic transport skills should also be augmented by strong interest and skills in such issues as NAT and identity. Some topics in the Transport Area have strong ties to the research community, therefore a research background can be helpful. The Transport Area intersects most frequently with Internet Area, the Applications Area, the RAI Area, the Security Area, and several IRTF research groups. Cross-area expertise in any of those Areas would be particularly useful.