Board Meeting Minutes, October 2020

A meeting of the Open Knowledge Foundation (OKF) Board was held via video call on Wednesday 28th October 2020  from 18:30 - 20:10

Board members who dialled in: Vanessa Barnett (VEB) (Chair), Helen Turvey (HT) (Vice Chair), Rufus Pollock (RP), Jarmo Eskelinen (JE), Ira Bolychevsky (IB),Tim Hubbard (TH), Vicky Brock (VAB)
Observers: Cassandra Woolford (CW) (FM), Jo Barratt (JB) (DM)  Meg Foulkes (MF) (BDM)
Apologies: Johnny West (JW)

Welcome & review of minutes & actions [Chair]

The minutes from the July 2020 board meetings were approved. A small typo amendment is required. CW to action.

A separate meeting will be organised in the following week, to discuss the Board member addition to the Datopian Board. VEB to action.

RP confirmed the understanding that VAB has requested to step down from the Datopian board.

Leadership Team Update [LT]

JB updated on Q3. The CEO has departed. LT team introduced a Sprint planning process. A number of new projects are starting, resource planning is underway. The Hewlett grant is ending in December 2020.  A discussion took place around the final months of the grant and the execution of the funds.

The team is collating the materials for Data Literacy training. A new application is being built to collate these, and this will be shared with the board once ready.

Review / Audit of SysAdmin taking place, the outcome will cut costs and has given a clear understanding of the internal process’.

Our Open Futures campaign, whilst an interesting learning exercise for future campaigns, was not a success in  increasing  donations or achieving new signups to our newsletter.

MF updated on planning for Open Data Day 2021, to take place in March. The focus for OKF will be on a Topical theme, Climate Change, and new contacts for funding is underway.  TH suggested an online OKF event for consideration.

Q3 for the Justice program is moving in a positive direction. A Police webinar took place, and they have expressed interest in a repeat webinar in Q1 2021. MF confirmed that resourcing is underway to pitch the program and roll out more webinars in the next two quarters. The delivery of the webinars has the benefit of not being impacted by the pandemic. MF provided an update on the launch of the Strategic Litigation with the Bar Standards Board, the engagement with which is moving in a positive direction.

A sub project has emerged which is the creation of Best Practice guidelines for the technology used. MF is working with various stakeholders to understand what the demand is.  OKF is displaying evidence of trying to solve the problem of Algorithmic accountability. MF also shared some contacts being made in the Legal / Law arena.

Finance Update [CW]

Q3 update by CW. OKF continues to be reporting consistently, keeping within budget with a positive surplus forecasted for the end of the Financial Year. A budget for 2021 was shared with the Board. HT requested 24 hrs to have a final review. It was pointed out that the  budget does not include growth or expansion; with a new CEO in the next financial year, changes may be required for signoff.

Risk Register [CW]

CW updated on a few minor changes. There were three risks where the impact was reduced  and a new risk was added. The risks continue to be monitored and mitigated where possible.

Datopian [RP]

RP updated on Q3 and year to date Financials. Datopian continues its positive turnaround and is reporting a healthy profit for 2020. RP would like to invest in CKAN development and Business Development. RP acknowledges the team and JB for the collaboration between OKF and Viderum Inc t/a Datopian. RP expressed that the 2021 pipeline was unknown and there is likely to be a knock on effect from the pandemic of 2020 and due to the feast / famine style of Consultancy that they provide it is difficult to forecast the prediction.


CEO Recruitment, JB, MF and CW left the meeting.