[rfc-i] Shift in RSE's 'authority', was Re: Fwd: FW: New Version Notification for draft-iab-rfc-editor-model-v2-02.txt

Olaf Kolkman olaf at NLnetLabs.nl
Fri Jul 1 03:20:45 PDT 2011


Colleagues,

I am using a quote from John Levine's message on Jul 1, 2011, at 6:33 AM, as a starting point, not to debate the points he is making, but to make my own.

> I agree, this is a lot easier to follow.
> 
>> 1) The IAOC provided specific text describing the vendor selection 
>> process.
> 
> It looks reasonable.  The RSE is deeply involved, which I would think
> is a good thing, since the RSE has to deal with whoever is selected
> more closely than anyone else does.


I believe that there is an underlying change that may be more significant than just documentation of the process. 


In I-D version 01 (section 3.1.1 therein) we read:

>>   o   The RSE owns and develops the work definition (the SOW) and	 		
>>       manages the vendor search processes.  The work definition is	 		
>>       created within the (budgetary) boundary condition that are	 		
>>       negotiated with IASA and takes into account the RSE's requirements	 		
>>       and community input.	 		
>>  		
>>    o  The RSE manages the evaluation process of the bids against the SOW	 		
>>       and then provides a recommendation to the IASA.	 		
>>  		
>>    o  Final vendor selection is done by the IASA in close consultation	 		
>>       with the RSE to ensure that contract terms and other arrangements	 		
>>       are consistent with the SOW, consistent with the both RSE's and	 		
>>       contractor's requirements to satisfy the contract.	 		
>>  		


In the new I-D 02 text (section 4.1 therein) we read:

>>  The RSE owns and develops the work definition (the SOW) and	
>>  participates in the IASA Vendor selection process.  The work	
>>  definition is created within the IASA budget and takes into account	
>>  the stream managers and community input.	
>>  
>>  The process to select and contract for an RFC Production Center, RFC	
>>  Publisher, and other RFC-related services, is as follows:	
>>  		
>>  	   o  The IAOC establishes the contract process, including the steps	
>>  	      necessary to issue an RFP when necessary, the timing, and the	
>>  	      contracting procedures.	
>>  		
>>  	   o  The IAOC establishes the Selection Committee, which will consist	
>>  	      of the RSE, the IAD, and other members selected by the RSOC and	
>>  	      the IAOC.  The Committee shall be chaired by the RSE.	
>>  		
>>  	   o  The Selection Committee selects the vendor, subject to the	
>>  	      successful negotiation of a contract approved by the IAOC.  In the	
>>  	      event that a contract cannot be reached, the matter shall be	
>>  	      referred to the Selection Committee for further action.



To me this reads as a change from the RSE being the leader of the process (within the boundary conditions of BCP101) to the IAOC being the leader of the process and the RSE having a more 'bureaucratic' and serving role  ('burocratic' for lack of a better word). That might seem a detail, but it changes the profile of the RSE away from the strong 'executive manager' role.


John's other question exposed some of that:
> It's not clear to me who's supposed to negotiate the vendor contract once the selection committee picks a vendor.  The selection committee?  The RSE?  The IAOC?  I would assume it's the selection committee, or more likely a small subset thereof, in which case the sentence about referring matters back to the same committee in case of no contract seems redundant.
> Perhaps say that the committee selects a vendor and negotiates a contract acceptable to the IAOC.


Although not described in version 01 of the document, I think that the consequence of the RSE managing the process and handing the result over to the IAOC would that the RSE that would sit down with the IAD and the candidate to negotiate a deal. (Again formally, the IAD is the only one that can negotiate a contract according to BCP 101). Since the budget constraints are set in advance the IAOCs approval would a matter of due-dilligence.

John's assumption that a selection committee should negotiate doesn't work because of the boundary conditions set by BCP101.

If we really want to allow the RSE to perform 'executive management' the RSE would do the negotiations instead of the IAD (still subject to IAOC approval, just like the IAD) but that would need an update of BCP101 and nobody wants to do that. 


Anyhow, the point I am trying to make is that the changes that are introduced move away from empowering the RSE as an executive manager and we are moving to a domain where the RSE is more like a civil servant. That is not mend as a quality statement with this sentence but as an observation that this change is likely to impact the profile of the person that is being looked for. If we make such changes we should make them consciously.


-- Olaf, no hats.


PS. An alternative text, trying to get the RSE instead of the IAOC, in the middle of this would be:


>> The RSE owns and develops the work definition (the SOW) and	
>>  participates in the IASA Vendor selection process.  The work	
>>  definition is created within the IASA budget and takes into account	
>>  the stream managers and community input.	
>>  
>>  The process to select and contract for an RFC Production Center, RFC	
>>  Publisher, and other RFC-related services, is as follows:	
>>  		
>>            o  The RSE proposes the contract process, including the steps
>>               necessary to issue an RFP when necessary, the timing, and the	
>>               contracting procedures. The process is approved by the IAOC.	
>>  		
>>            o  The RSE manages the evaluation process, taking into account
>>               the input and needs of the materially concerned, of the bids against the SOW  
>>               and then provides a recommendation to the IASA.
>> 
>>  		
>>            o  Upon approval of the recommendation the RSE makes the selection,
>>               subject to the successful negotiation of a contract and approval
>>               of the contract.. Negotiation of the contract is performed by the
>>               IAD in close consultation with the RSE to ensure that contract terms 
>>               and other arrangements are consistent with the SOW, consistent with
>>               the both RSE's and contractor's requirements to satisfy the contract.
>>               Final approval of the contract is performed by the IAOC.  In the	

>>  	      event that a contract cannot be reached, the RSE shall be requested
>>               a new recommendation



________________________________________________________ 

Olaf M. Kolkman                        NLnet Labs
http://www.nlnetlabs.nl/











     



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