Emergency Information Interoperability Framework Incubator Group Charter


The mission of the Emergency Information Interoperability Framework Incubator Group, part of the Incubator Activity, is to review and analyse the current state-of-the-art in vocabularies used in emergency management functions and to investigate the path forward via an emergency management systems information interoperability framework. These activities will lay the groundwork for a more comprehensive approach to ontology management and semantic information interoperability leading to a proposal for future longer-term W3C Working Group activity.

Join the Emergency Information Interoperability Framework Incubator Group.

End date 30 June 2009
Confidentiality Proceedings are public
Initial Chairs Renato Iannella, NICTA
Chamindra de Silva, Lanka Software Foundation/Virtusa
Initiating Members
Usual Meeting Schedule Teleconferences: Monthly
Face-to-face: Once or Twice


The emergency management community encompasses a broad spectrum of local, national and international organisations with a role in emergency and disaster management. Comprehensive emergency management is generally composed of four key components:

There are a wide variety of roles in which information systems are used by emergency managers:

The wide range of organisations involved in emergency management requires a collaborative approach to the sharing of information. Information systems to support a collaborative approach to emergency management can add significant value, especially as the scope and scale of an event increases, and with it the volume of information that is required to be managed and shared.

It is essential that information is stored and communicated in common formats to ensure that information can be easily exchanged and aggregated to support the decision making process. A key component of this process is ensuring that consistent definitions (vocabulary) are used to support meaningful sharing of information.

This W3C incubator group aims to encourage the emergency management community in the development of clearly defined vocabularies and a framework for information interoperability to ensure that meaningful sharing and aggregation of information to assist in emergency functions.

Success Criteria

The XG will prove successful if, in addition to the Deliverables, it will:



This XG will develop three specific results.


While the XG will not have any direct dependencies, there are a number of related efforts with which it intends to maintain close communications. The XG will form a strong liaison to the OASIS Emergency Management Technical Committee, via the Chair, who is a member of that group. The XG intends to collect and categorize numerous emergency management related vocabularies and in the process will gain a comprehensive picture of the key stakeholders. This will include other standards groups, national and international emergency management groups, and international resilience and relief organisations. The XG will solicit and welcome input from these and other efforts of which we become aware during the duration of the XG.


It is envisioned that the XG will teleconference fortnightly at a time that provides an adequate compromise over the various time zones of the interested participants. Extensive discussion will also be carried out on the XG mailing list.  Additionally, it may be useful to have one or two face-to-face meetings at a venue for which a significant number of XG participants are likely to attend.  

Expected participation follows the W3C Process Document discussion of Good Standing.


This group primarily conducts its work on the public mailing list public-xg-eiif@w3.org (archive) . The group's Member-only list is member-xg-eiif@w3.org (archive)

Information about the group (deliverables, participants, face-to-face meetings, teleconferences, etc.) is available from the Emergency Information Interoperability Framework Incubator Group home page.

Decision Policy

As explained in the Process Document (section 3.3), this group will seek to make decisions when there is consensus. When the Chair puts a question and observes dissent, after due consideration of different opinions, the Chair should record a decision (possibly after a formal vote) and any objections, and move on.

Patent Policy

The Emergency Information Interoperability Framework Incubator Group provides an opportunity to share perspectives on interoperability and ontologies in emergency management. W3C reminds Incubator Group participants of their obligation to comply with patent disclosure obligations as set out in Section 6 of the W3C Patent Policy. While the Incubator Group does not produce Recommendation-track documents, when Incubator Group participants review Recommendation-track specifications from Working Groups, the patent disclosure obligations do apply.

Incubator Groups have as a goal to produce work that can be implemented on a Royalty Free basis, as defined in the W3C Patent Policy.

Participants agree to offer patent licenses according to the W3C Royalty-Free licensing requirements described in Section 5 of the W3C Patent Policy for any portions of the XG Reports produced by this XG that are subsequently incorporated into a W3C Recommendation produced by a Working Group which is chartered to take the XG Report as an input. This licensing commitment may not be revoked but may be modified through the Exclusion process defined in Section 4 of the Patent Policy.

Participants in this Incubator Group wishing to exclude essential patent claims from the licensing commitment must join the Working Group created to work on the XG Report and follow the normal exclusion procedures defined by the Patent Policy. The W3C Team is responsible for notifying all Participants in this Incubator Group in the event that a new Working Group is proposed to develop a Recommendation that takes the XG Report as an input.

About this Charter

This charter for the Emergency Information Interoperability Framework Incubator Group has been created according to the Incubator Group Procedures documentation. In the event of a conflict between this document or the provisions of any charter and the W3C Process, the W3C Process shall take precedence.

Renato Iannella $Date: 2009/01/23 05:11:51 $

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