[HOT] Conflicts of Interest

nicolas chavent nicolas.chavent at gmail.com
Thu Mar 12 15:42:59 UTC 2015

Hi Dale

Thanks for your email and to bring upfront the question of your vision
about the handling of conflict of interest in the Board of HOT US tied to
partnership and your call for candidates to the Board of HOT US to publish
their statements.

Speaking about conflict of interests and partnerships, here are a couple of


   We need to ensure the autonomy and neutrality of HOT US vis a vis all
   actors of the humanitarian system. This may be a reason good enough to
   preclude a partner and a funding partner to serve as a Board Member of HOT
   US the way other humanitarian organizations did. This is specifically true
   when speaking of a small organization like HOT US and a large major
   humanitarian actor such as the American Red Cross (ARC).

   In HOT US, there are precedents leading to the resignation of former
   Board members Robert Soden and John Crowley (World Bank) and Mikel Maron
   (Presidential Innovation Fellow at the White House)

   Since its early times, HOT US has been working through partnerships and
   it’s good that you highlighted this dimension and how it helped
   strengthening the HOT Project. Amongst numerous partners, ARC has been a
   great partner since the Summer of 2013. But some of the projects you
   mentioned like the Tasking Manager, the HOT Export would have not been
   possible with ARC only and owed a lot to Australia-Indonesia Facility for
   Disaster Risk Reduction (AIFDR) and the Office Of Transition (OTI) of

   Working in partnership does not require to have staffs representing
   those partners in the Board of HOT US. As a matter of fact, there are other
   ways for partners to participate efficiently in the organization than as a
   Board member, as individuals (member or not) they can advise individually
   or through a Working Group, they can also be consulted as individuals or
   possibly as a college of experts by the Board.

   HOT has been working so far without representatives from its partner/
   funder organizations in its Board with successes growing into a mature
   organization. The projects you mentioned are an example of this. The added
   value of a change in that matter is not clear when the risks of losses
   are/could be real on the front of the autonomy (real and perceived) vis
   a vis the humanitarian and development actors and balance in managing

   Balance in partnerships is an aspect to take carefully into
   consideration when thinking about allowing representant of partner/funder
   organizations to serve as Board members in HOT US. Given the number of
   partners and the solid and rich relationships built over time with them,
   why and how choosing only one? How to avoid being dragged into the
   relationships between the various actors of the humanitarian and
   development worlds.

I appreciate your call to other candidates to publish their election
statements but this is not a requirement within HOT US in Board Election.
This is left up to the candidates to choose their own pace, timeline and
their documents : some chose their profiles, their wiki pages, their social
media account and a statement, like you and I [1].

Regardless of those choices, discussion has always happened in any HOT
Board election. This already started for this one and will continue
throughout the vote period (with 2 weeks left) for the very best of HOT US.

I look forward to continuing these discussions.


 [1] Nicolas’ statement : https://www.openstreetmap

On Thu, Mar 12, 2015 at 12:46 AM, Dale Kunce <dale.kunce at gmail.com> wrote:

> Several members have asked me questions about how I would handle potential
> conflicts if elected to the HOT Board.
> First, I want to talk about the value of partnerships and why HOT should
> pursue more deeply integrated partnerships. My work at the American Red
> Cross overlaps a lot with HOT, this is a good thing. As HOT has grown it
> has engaged with more and more with larger partners. Kate and others have
> done a great job expanding those partnerships to get more funding to expand
> HOT's work around the world.
> Through partnerships the American Red Cross and Medicine Sans Frontiers,
> HOT co-founded the Missing Maps initiative. Until Missing Maps HOT lacked a
> way to truly engage partners that are interested in being more than
> consumers of HOTs work. Missing Maps provides a great way for HOT to
> leverage the size and skill sets of partners to further its own mission.
> Working with partners HOT expanded programming in Indonesia, Dar es Salaam
> and others. These expanded programs helped to bring together funding for
> technology projects such as the original Tasking Manager, Tasking Manager
> v2, HOT exports, InaSafe, and the soon to be released OpenMapKit.
> As representatives from partners such as myself seek to become more
> engaged in HOT will of course have some potential conflicts. These
> conflicts are natural and are not something that should preclude any
> employee of a HOT partner from running or serving on the board. This type
> of cross pollination is healthy not only for HOT as a whole but it provides
> great opportunities for skilled partner representatives to give time and
> skills in areas needed by HOT such as technology project management,
> fundraising, governance, networking, and visioning. These skills and
> relationships are desperately needed by HOT as it seeks to secure long term
> non-project funding and become more sustainable.
> I believe conflicts should be handled in the follow 2 basic ways.
> 1. Potential conflicts should be talked about and acknowledged well before
> any actual conflicts arise.
> 2. Board members should completely recuse themselves from any
> conversation. They should not listen to or be a part of the conversation
> during any activities where a conflict exist.
> In following with the basic conflict rules above I think it should be
> every board candidate to explain any potential conflicts within their
> candidate statement. As such I'll be posting my conflicts the the Board
> Election Wiki and encourage others to do the same.
> I also encourage those candidates that haven't yet created a candidate
> statement of manifesto to do so now. Explain why you are running for the
> HOT board. Why you are passionate about HOT and what your priorities will
> be in the next year. This is important for voting members and for other
> board candidates so that we can have a frank, honest, and robust discussion
> about the future of HOT.
> _______________________________________________
> HOT mailing list
> HOT at openstreetmap.org
> https://lists.openstreetmap.org/listinfo/hot

Nicolas Chavent
Projet OpenStreetMap (OSM)
Projet Humanitarian OpenStreetMap Team (HOT)
Projet Espace OSM Francophone (EOF)
Mobile (FRA): +33 (0)6 52 40 78 20
<nicolas.chavent at hotosm.org>
Email: nicolas.chavent at gmail.com
Skype: c_nicolas
Twitter: nicolas_chavent
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