[Foundation-l] Board resolutions (chapters)

Florence Devouard Anthere9 at yahoo.com
Tue Jan 20 10:54:32 UTC 2009

Guillaume Paumier wrote:
> Hello,
> [it might be useful to move this topic to a dedicated thread if it goes on]
> On Tue, Jan 20, 2009 at 11:10 AM, Florence Devouard <Anthere9 at yahoo.com> wrote:
>> We hold an annual meeting between all chapters and WMF.
>> Already, because of the number of chapters, it is recommanded that only
>> one representant of all chapters come to the meeting. Needless to say,
>> this limitation is going to largely damage the ability of this meeting
>> to build anything.
> May I ask some arguments to support this statement?

Sorry. There are two arguments in my sentence. Which one do you want 
support for ?

The argument that there will be only one representant is something I 
think I read that in one of your document. I may be wrong. I can look 
for the information if necessary. But I understood number of 
representants will be strongly limited.

Or the fact one representant will damage the ability of the meeting to 
build anything ?
Well, yeah, pretty simple.

First, when a meeting occur with say, 25 people, there is room for 
discussions and work. When a meeting occur with 100 people, much less.
Last year was fine. This year will probably be okay in terms of figures. 
But every year will become more and more difficult. How many people will 
join this year Guillom ?

Second, one person may speak in the name of its board on issues they 
have discussed previously. Far less on new discussions. And at the end 
of the discussion, the representant may not "vote" because legally 
speaking, only the entire board can take a decision.
Which means that the meeting may be an opportunity to "meet" and 
exchange experiences. But it may not be an opportunity to reach agreements.
If any doubt on this, a show case is the procedure chosen to select the 
two representants to the board. One procedure was identified by the 
group at last year chapter meeting. But we are doing another procedure 
because in the end, most did not agree with the procedure identified 
during the meeting. Not to say it was a loss of time of course, but the 
meeting can simply not be used as a decision-making time.

Walking on eggs, I will also point out that not all chapters always send 
the most appropriate person to this meeting. When two or three people 
can come, the chosen people will usually be the chair and the "one 
person doing a lot of work at international level and with many 
relationships with many chapters". When only one person come, I think in 
many cases, the chair will be selected, as representant of the chapters. 
  And I think this person is not necessarily the best choice.

In the future, we'll have to decide whether we want this annual meeting 
to be a "small" one, with max one representative (in which case, it will 
mostly be a "sharing experiences" time). Or if we want more a 
convention, with open membership (in which case, it will mostly be a 
"agreement reaching time").

>> Are sub-chapters going to have one representant as well ?
> Yes. As you've already been told, they're not sub-chapters, they're
> sub-national chapters.
>> If that's the case, I suspect that we will soon have to abandon this
>> annual meeting altogether, and will have to replace it by "region" meetings.
> Yes, and this was considered during last year's meeting postmortem.

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