Many of you will be familiar with the governance stack. It tends to be made of tiers or layers such as the governance layer, technical layer, the legal layer, and the data layer. Sometimes the order varies, but the gist is the same. Within the humanitarian industry, we spend a lot of time focusing on the technical layer when we need to spend more time focusing on the governance layer. In particular, we need to spend more time figuring out how we can involve project participants in the decision making about how their data is used.
In our current work, we have expanded the governance stack to look like the below. There are different roles for agencies and for project participants themselves in each layer.
There is more work to do. We are now working on detailing out each layer and creating templates we can use to practically implement the approach. And yes, it may not work – in fact, we know that it won’t work out all nicely like this, but it is in the doing, in the trying that we will learn and contribute to the shift.