The Global Voices Community Council is a forum for Global Voices participants to inform and advise on strategic issues related to the organization, including fundraising and ethics policies, editorial approach, programmatic focus, and related topics.

The Council plays a consultative role in various decision-making processes led by the board and core team. Council members advise, share knowledge, and express opinions on key issues via a mailing list, group video calls, and structured opinion polls.

This page describes the ongoing, annual Community Council, starting in late 2019/early 2020.

To learn more about the original “Council 0.1″, please see the Community Consultation on the Future of Global Voices 2018 page, which describes the original, temporary council's makeup as well as the four key issues we tackled.

The “new” council is a continuation of that process, based on the overwhelming support we received for the idea during Council 2018 Issue #3: Organizational Structure.

Council roster:

Annual Council working papers

For each year's Council, we draft an issue paper that describes the key topic and lays out possible futures. These issue papers form the framework for an annual strategic planning process.

Read all Community Council posts, including all issue papers, poll results, and analysis of outcomes.

Consultations and meetings

The Council is convened for a deliberation about once per year to discuss an important issue facing Global Voices. Before each deliberation there is a registration period, where active contributors are invited to apply for membership (See Council Membership section below).

After a registration and an orientation process, the issue at hand is presented to the Council over email, along with associated reading materials, including research, analysis, and proposed solutions for discussion.

Members are given time to review and comment on these materials over email, followed by online video conference calls for live discussion. The calls last 1-2 hours, and are scheduled on different days and times to enable as many members as possible to participate. Afterward, call recordings are made available for those unable to attend.

If choosing between a set of final options is part of the issue package, members are given time to fill out an online poll collecting their preferences.

The whole process takes 3-4 weeks depending on the topic and the need for polling, followed by an exit survey and follow-up calls to collect feedback on the process.

Council membership

Participation in the Council is open to all active contributors, community members, and contractors who meet the qualifications and agree to the terms and expectations of membership (both described below).

The Council is not limited in size, and we aim to ensure a diverse and representative group across contributor type, geography, gender, and language.

The Council is intended to be a permanent, ongoing process, with members continuing participation as long as they choose to.

Terms and expectations of membership

Council members work together to address the issues and solutions presented by sharing ideas, knowledge and solutions.

Specifically, Council members are expected to:

  • Receive and respond to Council communications, including email, meeting invitations, and polls.
  • Read and reflect on the issues and solutions presented to the council.
  • Join group discussions on designated communication platforms, and participate in online video calls.
  • Participate in polls when applicable.
  • Agree to open, civil and respectful discussions in accordance with the Community Ethics and Harassment Policy in Council proceedings and in public life.
  • Agree to practice secure communication in accordance with the Communication and Safety Guidelines
  • Sign a memorandum of understanding (MOU) document agreeing to these terms of participation.

Who can participate in the Council?

The goal of our membership criteria is broad participation from across the community. Any person who falls into one or more of the following categories may participate:

  • Contributors who have been part of the GV community for at least three months, have made at least five contributions total, and have published a post or translation in the past five years.
    • This includes participants in campaigns, collaborative posts such as the Netizen Report, and Rising Voices microgrant project leads
  • Core team members, board members, newsroom editors, translation managers, and other contractors.
  • Inactive contributors, editors, translation managers, other contractors and community members who participated more than five years ago are also encouraged to apply

All council members must be in good standing with regard to Global Voices’ Community Ethics and Harassment Policy.

Applications and renewal

New membership applications are requested and accepted once per year before a new deliberation begins. Qualifying community members can apply to join using the Council application form.

Existing members retain their Council status as long as they want to participate.Members may resign from the Council at any time by notifying

Censure or removal

Members may be censured or removed from the Council for the following reasons:

  • A breach of the Community Ethics and Harassment Policy, within Global Voices or in public life.
  • Lack of participation in Council activities (see Terms and expectations of membership above).

Recent GV Council posts