Creating a Committee

SIGCSE's Committee Initiative encourages all SIGCSE members to participate in substantive discussions on areas of community interest, with the goals of investigating topics in depth and culminating with substantive reports.

The SIGCSE Board expects that SIGCSE Committees will emerge from on-going discussions, interests, and concerns of the membership. To form a SIGCSE Committee a proposal is sent to the SIGCSE Board for approval. The main criteria are that:

  • a Committee addresses a need or issue expressed by several members of the SIGCSE community;
  • the Committee has a well-defined, clear focus;
  • the Committee has a specified start and end date;
  • a report is sent to the SIGCSE Board on the conclusion of the committee; and
  • appropriate facilitators are identified to guide Committee deliberations.

While the SIGCSE Board is flexible in the process leading to the appointment of a Committee, the following may suggest some possible scenarios:

  1. Initial title suggested: To date, initial topics have come from individuals, brainstorming at SIGCSE Symposia, e-mail correspondence with the SIGCSE Chair, and SIGCSE Board discussions.
  2. Title/charge clarified: Discussion with the SIGCSE Chair may help refine the main topic and clarify the issue(s) a Committee might address and indicate who might want to participate in a potential Committee.
  3. Committee Initiated: When a title seems well defined and when discussion seems to have crystallized on a focus, the SIGCSE Board will formally appoint two to four facilitators to convene a Committee to address the topic.
  4. Committee Constituted: Once facilitators are identified, the Committee will be publicized to the SIGCSE membership through the general SIGCSE listserv: Thus, all interested SIGCSE members will be invited to join.

While these Committees will be largely self-directed, some guidelines will provide structure and guidance:

  • Membership on any Committee will be open to any SIGCSE member.
  • The SIGCSE Board will appoint two to four facilitators for each Committee to help in discussions and in the preparation of draft materials.
  • Each Committee will study its topic with the intent of producing a report.
  • While formal Committee work would proceed electronically, Committee members might meet informally at conferences (e.g., at Birds-of-a-Feather sessions), for those members who can attend.
  • Committees are invited to present draft reports at conferences or to post their drafts on the Web in order to received feedback.
  • Final reports may be presented at conferences and/or published in the SIGCSE Bulletin.
  • After issuing a report, a Committee normally would dissolve, although a new Committee might be formed (possibly with new facilitators) to address related matters.