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Network Working Group Internet Architecture Board Request for Comments: 2850 B. Carpenter, Editor Obsoletes: 1601 May 2000 BCP: 39 Category: Best Current Practice

          Charter of the Internet Architecture Board (IAB)

Status of this Memo

 This document specifies an Internet Best Current Practices for the
 Internet Community, and requests discussion and suggestions for
 improvements.  Distribution of this memo is unlimited.

Copyright Notice

 Copyright (C) The Internet Society (2000).  All Rights Reserved.


 This memo documents the composition, selection, roles, and
 organization of the Internet Architecture Board. It replaces RFC

Table of Contents:

 1. IAB Membership...............................................2
 1.1  Selection of full IAB members..............................2
 1.2 Ex-Officio and Liaison members..............................2
 2.  The Role of the IAB.........................................3
 2.1 Architectural oversight in more detail......................4
 3. IAB Organization.............................................5
 3.1 IAB chair...................................................5
 3.2 Executive Director..........................................5
 3.3 Selection of the IRTF chair.................................5
 3.4 Liaisons within the IETF....................................5
 3.5 Decision taking.............................................6
 3.6 Openness and confidentiality................................6
 Security Considerations.........................................6
 Summary of Changes from RFC 1601................................6
 Author's Address................................................7
 Full Copyright Statement........................................8

IAB Best Current Practice [Page 1] RFC 2850 IAB Charter May 2000

1. IAB Membership

 The Internet Architecture Board (IAB) shall consist of thirteen full
 members, composed of the chair of the Internet Engineering Task Force
 (IETF), and of twelve sitting members.  The IETF chair, who is also
 the chair of the Internet Engineering Steering Group (IESG), may
 participate in all official IAB actions except the approval of IESG
 members and appeals against IESG decisions. Ex-officio and liaison
 members of the IAB may also attend IAB meetings but shall not
 participate in determination of official actions.
 Members of the IAB shall serve as individuals, and not as
 representatives of any company, agency, or other organization.
 Members of the IAB shall owe no fiduciary duty of loyalty or care to

1.1 Selection of full IAB members

 Full IAB members, including the IETF chair, are selected and
 appointed according to the procedures defined in [BCP 10] . Normally,
 six sitting members are appointed each year to sit for two years, and
 the IETF chair is appointed every two years.
 There is no limit to the number of terms that a member of the IAB may
 serve, subject to the process defined by [BCP 10].
 Mid-term vacancies are filled as defined in [BCP 10] and do not
 affect the IAB's power to take decisions.

1.2 Ex-Officio and Liaison members

 Ex-officio and liaison members of the IAB have no standing to
 participate in IAB decisions but are expected to participate in IAB
 discussions as appropriate to their roles.  However, an ex-officio
 position may be held by a full member, who does not thereby lose his
 or her standing to participate in IAB decisions.
 The chair of the Internet Research Task Force (IRTF) is an ex-officio
 member of the IAB. The IAB has an Executive Director who is an ex-
 officio member of the IAB.
 The Internet Society, the RFC Editor, the IANA and the IESG each
 appoints a liaison member to the IAB. These liaison positions may not
 be held by a full member of the IAB.
 Vacancies in the liaison and ex officio positions do not affect the
 IAB's power to take decisions.

IAB Best Current Practice [Page 2] RFC 2850 IAB Charter May 2000

2. The Role of the IAB

 The IAB is chartered both as a committee of the IETF and as an
 advisory body of the Internet Society.  Its responsibilities include:
 (a) IESG Appointment
 The IETF nominating committee established under [BCP 10] annually
 provides a list of candidates for vacant IESG seats and for the IETF
 Chair if vacant. The IAB reviews the candidates, consenting to some,
 all, or none.
 (b) Architectural Oversight
 The IAB provides oversight of the architecture for the protocols and
 procedures used by the Internet. This point is expanded in Section
 2.1 below.
 (c) Standards Process Oversight and Appeal
 The IAB provides oversight of the process used to create Internet
 Standards [BCP 9].
 The IAB serves as an appeal board for complaints of improper
 execution of the standards process, with powers defined in [BCP 9].
 (d) RFC Series and IANA
 The RFC Editor executes editorial management and publication of the
 IETF "Request for Comment" (RFC) document series, which is the
 permanent document repository of the IETF.  The RFC series
 constitutes the archival publication channel for Internet Standards
 and for other contributions by the Internet research and engineering
 community. RFCs are available free of charge to anyone via the
 Internet. The IAB must approve the appointment of an organization to
 act as RFC Editor and the general policy followed by the RFC Editor.
 The Internet Assigned Numbers Authority (IANA) administers various
 protocol parameters used by IETF protocols, delegating this
 administration as appropriate. The IAB must approve the appointment
 of an organization to act as IANA on behalf of the IETF. The IANA
 takes technical direction on IETF protocols from the IESG.
 (e) ISOC Liaison
 The IAB acts as a source of advice and guidance to the Board of
 Trustees and Officers of the Internet Society concerning technical,
 architectural, procedural, and (where appropriate) policy matters

IAB Best Current Practice [Page 3] RFC 2850 IAB Charter May 2000

 pertaining to the Internet and its enabling technologies. If
 necessary the IAB may convene panels of knowledgeable people, hold
 hearings, and otherwise pursue the investigation of specific
 questions or topics presented to it by the Internet Society.
 (f) External Liaison
 The IAB acts as representative of the interests of the IETF and the
 Internet Society in technical liaison relationships with other
 organizations concerned with standards and other technical and
 organizational issues relevant to the world-wide Internet. Liaisons
 are kept as informal as possible and must be of demonstrable value in
 improving the quality of IETF specifications.  Individual members of
 the IETF are appointed as liaisons to other organizations by the IAB
 or IESG as appropriate.

2.1 Architectural oversight in more detail

 A major role of the IAB is long range planning and coordination
 between different areas of IETF activity.  The IAB, both collectively
 and on an individual basis, is expected to pay attention to important
 long-term issues in the Internet, and to make sure that these issues
 are brought to the attention of the group(s) that are in a position
 to address them.  It is also expected to play a role in assuring that
 the people responsible for evolving the Internet and its technology
 are aware of the essential elements of the Internet architecture.
 IAB members pay special attention to emerging activities in the IETF
 and to "Birds of a Feather" sessions at IETF meetings.  The IAB
 assists the IESG in evaluating such activities and in determining
 whether an IETF or an IRTF group is more appropriate.  When a new
 IETF working group is proposed, the IESG will forward a preliminary
 version of the charter to the IAB for review of architectural
 consistency and integrity.  The IAB shall review these proposed
 charters and give feedback to the IESG as appropriate.
 Pursuant to the architectural oversight function, the IAB sponsors
 and organizes the Internet Research Task Force (IRTF) [BCP 8].  The
 IAB reviews proposed IRTF groups.
 The IAB will convene invitational workshops to perform in-depth
 reviews of particular architectural issues.  Such reviews may include
 consideration of relevant IETF and IRTF activities, and of work in
 other organizations, and for this purpose the workshop may invite
 presentations by qualified parties on the design goals and decisions,
 technology choices, and other pertinent aspects of these activities.
 The results of such a review will be a report which may give advice
 to the IETF community and the IESG.

IAB Best Current Practice [Page 4] RFC 2850 IAB Charter May 2000

 The IAB may organize ad hoc bodies of independent technical experts
 to adjudicate technical disputes.

3. IAB Organization

3.1 IAB chair

 The members of the IAB shall select one of its full members to serve
 as the chair of the IAB, with all of the duties and responsibilities
 normally associated with such a position.  The term of the IAB chair
 shall be one year, with no restriction on renewal.  The chair of the
 IAB may be removed at any time by the affirmative vote of two-thirds
 of the members of the IAB, or as a result of his or her departure
 from the IAB.
 The chair of the IAB shall have the authority to manage the
 activities and meetings of the IAB.

3.2 Executive Director

 The chair of the IAB shall have the authority to appoint an honorary
 Executive Director (ExecD) for a one-year renewable term, and to
 remove him or her. The ExecD shall administer the internal operation
 of the IAB, e.g., organization of meetings and reporting of their
 The ExecD is an ex-officio member as defined in Section 1.2.

3.3 Selection of the IRTF chair

 The IAB shall have the authority to appoint the chair of the Internet
 Research Task Force (IRTF) for a two-year renewable term, and to
 remove him or her. The IRTF chair shall be responsible for the
 management and organization of the IRTF according to [BCP 8].
 The IRTF chair is an ex-officio member as defined in Section 1.2.

3.4 Liaisons within the IETF

 The chair of the IAB and another full IAB member (other than the IETF
 chair), to be selected by the IAB, shall serve as liaisons to the
 IESG. In addition, the IESG will appoint one of its members (other
 than the IETF chair) to serve as a liaison to the IAB.  The IESG
 liaison may attend IAB meetings.
 Vacancies in these liaison seats have no effect on the IAB's or the
 IESG's powers to make decisions.

IAB Best Current Practice [Page 5] RFC 2850 IAB Charter May 2000

3.5 Decision taking

 The IAB attempts to reach all decisions unanimously.  If unanimity
 cannot be achieved, the chair may conduct informal polls to determine
 consensus.  The IAB may make decisions and take action if at least
 seven full members concur and there are no more than two dissents.
 The IAB may reach decisions by face to face meeting, teleconference,
 Internet communication, or any combination of the above.

3.6 Openness and confidentiality

 The IAB publishes minutes of all its meetings on the Internet, and
 conducts an open meeting at every IETF meeting. It publishes all its
 findings as RFCs, Internet Drafts or messages to the IETF mailing
 list. However, discussion of personnel matters and possibly legal and
 financial matters may sometimes be required to be kept confidential,
 and the chair may, with the consent of the full members, exclude
 liaison and ex officio members from such discussions.
 Specifically, the IAB makes use of the second level domain
 and the URL to publish information.

Security Considerations

 This memo does not raise any known security threats.

Summary of Changes from RFC 1601

 This document replaces [RFC 1601]. The principal change is the
 removal of material now covered in [BCP 8], [BCP 9] and [BCP 10],
 with many consequent editorial changes.  Additional changes are:
  1. description of decision making when unanimity cannot be achieved
  2. note on openness and confidentiality
  3. addition of liaison seats for the Internet Society and the IANA
  4. revised text concerning the IANA and the RFC Editor
  5. clarifications following legal review

IAB Best Current Practice [Page 6] RFC 2850 IAB Charter May 2000


 [RFC 1601]  Huitema, C., "Charter of the Internet Architecture Board
             (IAB)", RFC 1601, March 1994.
 [BCP 8]     Weinrib, A., and J. Postel, "IRTF Research Group
             Guidelines and Procedures", BCP 8, RFC 2014, October
 [BCP 9]     Bradner, S., "The Internet Standards Process -- Revision
             3", BCP 9, RFC 2026, October 1996.
 [BCP 10]    Galvin, J., "IAB and IESG Selection, Confirmation, and
             Recall Process: Operation of the Nominating and Recall
             Committees", BCP 10, RFC 2282, February 1998.

Author's Address

 Brian E. Carpenter
 c/o iCAIR
 Suite 150
 1890 Maple Avenue
 Evanston IL 60201

IAB Best Current Practice [Page 7] RFC 2850 IAB Charter May 2000

Full Copyright Statement

 Copyright (C) The Internet Society (2000).  All Rights Reserved.
 This document and translations of it may be copied and furnished to
 others, and derivative works that comment on or otherwise explain it
 or assist in its implementation may be prepared, copied, published
 and distributed, in whole or in part, without restriction of any
 kind, provided that the above copyright notice and this paragraph are
 included on all such copies and derivative works.  However, this
 document itself may not be modified in any way, such as by removing
 the copyright notice or references to the Internet Society or other
 Internet organizations, except as needed for the purpose of
 developing Internet standards in which case the procedures for
 copyrights defined in the Internet Standards process must be
 followed, or as required to translate it into languages other than
 The limited permissions granted above are perpetual and will not be
 revoked by the Internet Society or its successors or assigns.
 This document and the information contained herein is provided on an


 Funding for the RFC Editor function is currently provided by the
 Internet Society.

IAB Best Current Practice [Page 8]

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