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Kubernetes Steering Committee Charter

This document outlines the mission, scope, and objectives of the Kubernetes Steering Committee.


The Kubernetes Steering Committee is the governing body of the Kubernetes project, providing decision-making and oversight pertaining to the Kubernetes project bylaws, sub-organizations, and financial planning. The Steering Committee also defines the project values and structure.


  • Adapt the role and structure of the Steering Committee as needed to meet the needs of the project.
  • Responsibilities not explicitly delegated to other parties2 through their charters reside with the Steering Committee.
  • All management1 responsibilities should be delegated to other parties2.
  • All technical responsibilities should be delegated to SIGs (i.e. the SC shouldn't retain technical responsibilities itself).

Direct responsibilities of the Steering Committee

The following responsibilities belong directly to the Steering Committee.

  • Through the chartering review process, delegate ownership of, responsibility for and authority over areas of the project to specific entities2.
  • Define, evolve, and defend the non-technical vision / mission and the values of the project.
  • Charter and refine policy for defining new community groups3, and establish transparency and accountability policies for such groups
  • Define and evolve project and group3 governance structures and policies4.
  • Act as a final non-technical escalation point for any Kubernetes repository5.
  • Request funds and other support from the CNCF (e.g. marketing, press, etc.)
  • Define and enforce requirements for community groups3 to be in good standing such as having an approved charter.

Not yet delegated responsibilities

The following responsibilities belong to the Steering Committe, but may be delegated in the future.

  • Coordinate with the CNCF regarding usage of the Kubernetes brand and deciding which things can be called “Kubernetes”, as well as how that mark can be used in relation to other efforts or vendors.
  • Decide, for the purpose of elections, who is a member of standing of the Kubernetes project, and what privileges that entails.
  • Control and delegate access to and establish processes regarding any Kubernetes repository5
  • Control and delegate access to and establish processes regarding project resources/assets6


In instances where a process is not already specified within this document, changes to the Steering Committee charter will be considered according to the processes set forth in the committee's operations documentation.



The Steering Committee is composed of seven (7) members.


Every year, the Steering Committee holds a general election for open seats.

Our election policy document covers the details for how this works.


In the event of a resignation or other loss of an elected committee member, the next most preferred candidate from the previous election will be offered the seat.

A maximum of one (1) committee member may be selected this way between elections.

In case this fails to fill the seat, a special election for that position will be held as soon as possible.

Eligible voters from the most recent election will vote in the special election i.e., eligibility will not be redetermined at the time of the special election.

A committee member elected in a special election will serve out the remainder of the term for the person they are replacing, regardless of the length of that remainder.


If a committee member chooses not to continue in their role, for whatever self-elected reason, they must notify the committee in writing.


No confidence

A Steering Committee member may be removed by an affirmative vote of a three-quarters supermajority of the fixed membership of the committee.


  • 7 (members) / 4 = 1.75
  • 1.75 * 3 = 5.25
  • Round up to the nearest whole number (6)
  • Six (6) affirmative votes would be required to remove a member through a vote of no confidence

The call for a vote of no confidence will happen in a public Steering Committee meeting and must be documented as a GitHub issue in the committee's repository.

The call for a vote of no confidence must be made by a current member of the committee and must be seconded by another current member.

The committee member who calls for the vote will prepare a statement which provides context on the reason for the vote. This statement must be seconded by the committee member who seconded the vote.

Once a vote of no confidence has been called, the committee will notify the community through the following channels:

This notification will include:

  • a link to the aforementioned GitHub issue
  • the statement providing context on the reason for the vote

There will be a period of two weeks for members of the community to reach out to Steering Committee members to provide feedback.

Community members may provide feedback by the following methods:

After this feedback period, Steering Committee members must vote on the issue within 48 hours.

If the vote of no confidence is passed, the member in question will be immediately removed from the committee.


In the course of the committee's operations, members will be expected to vote on decisions within the body's purview.

These votes may be called on agreed-upon platforms by the committee, such as:

  • a pull request
  • an issue
  • a Steering Committee meeting
  • a mailing list

For public business, the vote must be captured on an issue or pull request.

Routine business

Unless otherwise specified by a process, the requirement for passing a vote is a majority of the fixed membership of the committee.


  • 7 (members) / 2 = 3.5
  • Round up to the nearest whole number (4)
  • 4 members would be required to pass a vote


For any self-elected reason, members of the committee may decide to abstain from a vote.

Abstaining members will only be considered as contributing to quorum, in the event that a vote is called in a meeting.


Steering Committee members are generally expected to attend every meeting. We use the following guidelines to determine whether we have reached quorum and are able to proceed with a meeting.


Quorum to meet is a majority of the fixed membership of the committee.


  • 7 (members) / 2 = 3.5
  • Round up to the nearest whole number (4)
  • 4 members in attendance would be required to meet

Quorum to vote in a meeting is a two-thirds supermajority of the fixed membership of the committee.


  • 7 (members) / 3 = 2.333...
  • 2.333... * 2 = 4.666...
  • Round up to the nearest whole number (5)
  • 5 members in attendance would be required to vote during a meeting

Inclusive Leadership Training

Members of the committee must take an Inclusive Open Source Community Orientation course in support of our community values. Members are required to report completion of the course as part of on-boarding within 30 days from the date of their appointment.

1: Decisions and work pertaining to the daily operations of the project.

2: Such as individuals, Special Interest Groups and Committees

3: Such as Special Interest Groups, Working Groups, and Committees

4: including how contributors become committers/maintainers, approvers, reviewers, members, etc. As well as responsibilities associated with these role

5: Currently includes all repositories under the github organizations kubernetes, kubernetes-sigs, kubernetes-incubator, kubernetes-security, kubernetes-client, etc. and is expected to expand in the future.

6: Including artifact repositories, build and test infrastructure, web sites and their domains, blogs, social-media accounts, etc.