IAB Chair Selection Process Guidelines

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These guidelines describes how the IAB selects its chair.


  • Selection Committee Members: members of the new IAB slate confirmed and announced. This set includes incoming, on-going, and voting ex-officio members. It does not include liaisons or outgoing members. Non-voting ex-officio members of the IAB are non-voting members of the Selection Committee; outgoing members may also be consulted by consensus of the Selection Committee. This permits them to participate in the discussion, but not to vote on the decision. If the current IAB Chair resigns or leaves the board as a member outside the normal NomCom cycle, the Selection Chair starts the selection process as of the date of this event (i.e. resignation) is announced. In that case, the Selection Committee consists of the then current members of the IAB, excluding liaisons and non-voting ex-officio members.
  • Candidate: a Member of the Selection Committee who has been nominated or self-nominated.
  • Selection Chair: The Selection Committee chair. The Selection Committee, by consensus, designates a Selection Chair, generally from among those IAB members who are outgoing in that year. The Chair is not eligible to vote in case a vote is deemed necessary.
  • Selection Chair Assistant: a non-Selection Committee Member. By default, this is the IAB Executive Administrative Manager. The Selection Committee, by consensus, may designate another Selection Chair Assistant.
  • New Slate Date: the date the new IAB slate is confirmed and announced to the IETF community (usually around January-February)


This is a set of guidelines describing how the IAB selects its Chair. It is NOT a set of rules. In any circumstance where it does not work, the Selection Committee or IAB can and should use common sense and do what is right.

1. One or more members of the outgoing IAB members volunteers to serve as Selection Chair. If there is more than one volunteer, the Selection Committee chooses a chair from among the volunteers.

2. Around 5 days after the New Slate Date, the Selection Chair starts the IAB Chair Selection Process by soliciting the Selection Committee Members to nominate or self-nominate candidates for the chair position. The Selection Chair sets the nomination deadline which normally is 2 weeks.

3. Candidates send their intentions to the Selection Chair within the set deadline, with a short memo describing their motivation, goals, time commitment, etc. (no questionnaire, free form, 1 pager size).

4. After the deadline, the Selection Chair publishes all the intentions to the Selection Committee. A separate message is sent to the candidates so that all candidates are made aware of each others' willingness to serve. Note that if there are no candidates, steps beyond those described here need to be found and undertaken. Prior to the next face to face meeting, the Selection Committee Members without the candidates may decide to hold a meeting to discuss about the candidates set.

5. During the next IAB face to face meeting, the Selection Committee Members without the candidates shall have in person discussion about the candidates.

6. The Selection Committee determines whether consensus can be reached on the IAB chair position or whether a vote is necessary. If no vote is necessary, step 7 is skipped.

7. After the conversation, if it is deemed necessary to have a vote, the Selection Committee votes using secret, written, ballots. The ballot mechanism needs to include some way for each member to indicate preference for "none". These ballots are counted by the Selection Chair and Selection Chair Assistant and the selection chair announces the majority winner (but not the counts).

8. The Selection Chair informs the (new) IAB chair. The Selection Chair or Selection Committee discusses any feedback that the committee wants to share with the (new) IAB chair.

--- If there is no majority winner, steps 4, 5 and 6 are repeated, adjusting the candidate set by adding or subtracting choices as they collectively see fit.

--- This procedure deliberately makes no provision for absentee voting, as the absentee voter does not participate in the discussion.

9. The secretariat or IAB Executive Director announces the decision to the IETF.