Internet Architecture Board Conflict of Interest Policy
This policy covers the nomcom-selected Internet Architecture Board (IAB) members and ex-officio members (collectively, “Covered Individuals”). This policy has no impact on any other participants in IAB activities, for instance liaisons to and from the IAB or IAB program members.
In carrying out their IAB role, Covered Individuals are expected to act in the best interest of the Internet community. Occasionally the duties of this role may be—or may appear to be—incompatible or in conflict with a Covered Individual’s personal interests (including interests of their family members), or the interests of an organization of which the Covered Individual is an employee, director, owner, or otherwise has business or other current or future financial interest.
The purpose of this policy is to prevent Covered Individuals from using the IAB’s resources or decisions as a means for gain for themselves or related third parties.
Topics Requiring Disclosure Consideration
The IAB does not directly deal with matters relating to contracts or finance. The IAB does, however, have a role in personnel decisions, and its decisions and outputs have a potential to indirectly affect contracts within the IETF system. The IAB’s technical decisions and outputs also have a potential to impact both work elsewhere in the IETF and businesses that employ or develop Internet technology.
Activity on the IAB involves discussion and decisions regarding technical matters, mainly related to IETF activities. As an activity adjacent to a standardization process, it is often the case that Covered Individuals will have some (frequently non-financial) stake in the outcome of discussions or decisions that relate to technical matters. Covered Individuals should exercise judgement regarding disclosure related to technical matters, erring on the side of transparency. It is not expected that recusal related to technical matters will be common.
Topics where disclosure of potential conflicts may be required include, but is not limited to:
- Confirmations of candidates selected by other bodies
- Standards appeals
- The RFC Series Editor
- Liaison roles
- Advice to ISOC
- Appointments to other bodies
Sources of Potential Conflicts
This policy documents the expectation that all Covered Individuals publicly disclose, to the best of their ability, their main employment, sponsorship, consulting customer, or other relevant sources of income when entering the IAB or whenever there are updates.
Covered Individuals should promptly disclose when a topic discussed by the IAB could be considered a conflict of interest by a reasonable person.
Specific circumstances that might cause a conflict of interest include (but are not limited to):
- A personnel decision relates to the Covered Individual, a colleague that the Covered Individual’s works closely with, or a family member. For the purposes of this policy, a “person working closely with” is someone working in the same team or project, or a direct manager or employee of the Covered Individual. And “family” means a spouse, domestic partner, child, sibling, parent, stepchild, stepparent, and mother-, father-, son-, daughter-, brother-, or sister-in-law, and any other person living in the same household, except tenants and household employees.
- A decision or output from the IAB that may impact a contract that the IETF enters into with a party, and that party relates to the Covered Individual, a colleague that the Covered Individual works closely with, or a family member.
- The success of a Covered Individual’s business depends significantly on the outcome of an IAB discussion or decision.
Disclosure and Recusal Procedure
Aside from general employment and relevant income public disclosures required above, any Covered Individual’s other potential conflicts of interest should be disclosed internally to the IAB. Covered Individuals may choose to recuse themselves from participation in discussions or decisions at their discretion. The IAB can request that a Covered Individual who discloses a conflict of interest recuse themselves from discussions and decisions.
Recusal is expected to be rare, in part because the IETF nomination committee (nomcom) is expected to provide the IAB with a diverse set of members to balance the different priorities and opinions of individual members.
When a Covered Individual recuses from a decision or discussion, it will be noted in the public IAB minutes.
|IAB Member||Main Employment, Sponsorship, or Consulting Customer||Other relevant activities, sources of income, or potential conflict of interest||Disclosure Date|
|Cullen Jennings||Cisco||Advisory Committee Representative at W3C||2023-04-25|
|Mallory Knodel||Center for Democracy & Technology||None||2023-04-10|
|Colin Perkins||University of Glasgow||
|Alvaro Retana||Futurewei Technologies, Inc.||Industry Network Technology Council (INTC) Board Member||2023-04-11|
|David Schinazi||Google LLC||None||2023-04-10|
|Qin Wu||Huawei Technologies||
|Jiankang Yao||China Internet Network Information Center (CNNIC)||None||2023-04-25|
This policy was approved 2020-03-04.