Re: IETF areas re-organisation steps

Phillip Hallam-Baker <> Thu, 15 January 2015 20:50 UTC

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Date: Thu, 15 Jan 2015 15:50:43 -0500
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Subject: Re: IETF areas re-organisation steps
From: Phillip Hallam-Baker <>
To: Jari Arkko <>
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On Thu, Jan 15, 2015 at 11:41 AM, Jari Arkko <> wrote:

> Is the order significant? (Ted H) Answer: no.
> ...
> A counter-proposal is to flatten the hiearchy. Lose the concept of areas,
> and consider the IESG as a group of people, each one assigned to the most
> appropriate task. (Nico) Answer: there is some value in the areas for both
> management and participants.

We are (mostly) not managers (except reluctantly). And we are not the type
of managers that do major reorgs.

There are two main ways to organize a company, by function and by lines of
business. Most large companies tend to move from one to the other every 20
years or so. I asked a management specialist why they do it knowing that it
will be costly and both approaches have known flaws. The answer being that
the underlying objective is to stir things up and get different groups
talking to each other.

One constraint on the organization is that quite a few areas of Internet
technology require an incredible degree of domain specific expertise.
Application oriented folk such as myself really don't much care about
routing so long as Olafur and co keep feeding those pigeons.

We do have some cross-disciplinary groups - the IESG, IAB of course and the
Security Directorate.

I think we could do with more but I am not convinced organization gets us
there. After all, the fact that DPRIV is in Ops or whatever rather than
security really has no bearing on me as a participant.