When the Founder is Gone: Longevity for Open Projects presented at HOPE 9

by Greg Newby,

Tags: Security

Summary : A single visionary is often credited with shaping innovation and leading to success in open source and open content projects. This success doesnt come from that person alone: he or she leads a corps of willing volunteers, admirers, workers, and others who will turn vision into reality - often with some sort of organizational structure, and across a span of years. This presentation will focus on how to maintain the health and sustainability of such organizations with strong well-known leaders in the event the founder is lost. The presenter will draw upon personal experience with the recent loss of Michael Hart, founder of Project Gutenberg and inventor of eBooks. Every organization is different, and every leader is different. Yet, there are many common characteristics in efforts that started with a single visionary, who led formation of what became a large and successful organization. The presentation will point out some of these similarities and identify some of the promising strategies that have been effective for continuity.