FHISO Organisation

FHISO is an information standards-setting organisation.

We bring together stakeholders from the genealogy and family history communities for the purpose of developing open, international, technology standards and supporting documentation and services to benefit the communities.  All members ascribe to, and the Organisation operates in accordance with, the Code of Conduct — we organise ourselves and operate without prejudice or bias toward any product, service, individual, ethnic group, culture or country.

The Board of Directors is the organisation’s governing body. It establishes FHISO’s goals and policies, which are more fully developed and implemented by standing committees. The board manages the organisation, including work to ensure proper funding and compliance with state and federal authorities. The board supports, but does not manage, the work of the operating committees.

The Membership Standing Committee is responsible for the work to achieve FHISO’s membership goals, as expressed by the board. It oversees the work to ensure the membership represents all international stakeholders and provides a full range of standardisation and technical expertise to the organisation.

The Technical Standing Committee is responsible for the work to achieve FHISO’s technical goals, as expressed by the board, and it oversees all Technical Projects. The committee determines the requirements for and initiates or approves all Technical Project work, maintains requisite Project Team directives, and it may appoint coordinators and team members.

Working Groups and Project Teams do the technical work. Members identify practices or trends requiring standardisation and propose these to the organisation by forming a Working Group. Members who share an interest in the topic exchange ideas in that forum. When there is sufficient clarity, the Working Group may propose they be recognised as a Technical Project by the Technical Standing Committee. Whether initiated by a Working Group or separately advanced, Project approval requires a written summary of the proposed Project demonstrating an understanding of the scope of work, deliverables and resource requirements. There must be sufficient expertise and resources committed from relevant stakeholder groups. Once approved, Project work is conducted in a managed Project Team. Transparent reporting becomes a routine part of the overall project management process.

Decision-making occurs throughout the process, largely based on a requirements-driven, consensus-building model. Standards established in the FHISO process become published and made publicly available. Following publication, the organisation provides education and other support to encourage adoption and use of the standards.