Participation Team Moving to Open Innovation Group

FWD Message from Chris Beard & Mitchell Baker:

Hello everyone,

About 18 months ago Chris and Mark and Mitchell brought together separate community related groups and created the Participation team. We did so because of our belief that enabling participation is a key part of what makes us Mozilla, a key part of our success and a key part of our legacy. Mark and Mitchell took on the guidance role for the Participation team and Mitchell took on the manager role. This is unusual, and the cadence of operational management is a bit at odds with the rest of Mitchell’s work. We took this path to get the new team launched and productive
and to make sure Participation remains front-and-center at Mozilla. A few months later George Roter joined us to strengthen our capabilities.

Then in 2016 Katharina joined us, the Open Innovation group was created. We have found that the Participation team’s work is quite closely related to that of the Open Innovation group. Participation
focuses on enabling new ways for people to join us and contribute, and then building these at scale. Open Innovation focuses on enabling new and innovation practices across Mozilla. In addition, the teams have already been finding benefits in close collaboration.

As a result, we have all agreed that the best long term organizational and operational home for Participation is within the Open Innovation group. So effective immediately, George will report to Katharina. Katharina will take on responsibility for the operations of the Participation team, replacing Mitchell in this role. Mitchell will shift focus to how Mozilla values such as community and participation are reflected across both Mozilla Foundation and Corporation, working hand in hand with the new team, and with Mark and the Foundation team.

Chris and Mitchell

We’re very excited about this new structure and the way in which it brings us closer to the Innovation Team. Let us know if you have any questions, comments, concerns or thoughts below!


Tell us more about Open Innovation group.

Specifically do they have any repos or communication channels we should be
aware of/join?

Hi all,

That’s great! Looking forward to join Open Innovation Group.
Please let me know about the Channels where i can join it.

The Open Innovation Group is a new team at Mozilla focused on supporting innovation across the Mozilla Project. They’re going to be running a lot of experiments and small projects in the coming months and year to identify different opportunities around Mozilla for innovation. There’s a little bit of information about the team here but more will be coming:


I’m really excited about this! The Open Innovation Group is exactly where Participation needs to be! :smiley:

Me too, we were trying to be all things to all people and it was like home
was missing. A preacher without a congregation.

Thats sounds great , participation has shown its limits …I 'm really exited to learn more about Open Innovation Group ::slightly_smiling:

Does this mean my eWorking proposal gets fair consideration based on merit as open innovation rather than subjective judgment like:

Hi Chris,

You may not realize it so I will provide the insight - the three
individuals you list are insightful and diverse community leaders, with
years of experience between them contributing ideas (everything from
education to code, process to execution). I would count myself as lucky to
have their collective eyes on anything I was proposing.

I humbly suggest - rather than looking at their responses as being
dismissive, or subjective - you ask really good questions about why they
feel that way. What is about your proposal that feels too hard, irrelevant
or overwhelming. Consider revisiting your solution on their advice, and
identifying modular aspects that can themselves be vessels for clearer
communication and experimentation. The truth is if you think you have
everything wrapped up and it’s a perspective problem - then
that’s a blocker.

Questions. In no particular order.

  1. Is it different/subset/super-set/mutually exclusive to what IoT+CD will be doing. In short where does it fit or where do they fit
  2. Is it supposed to be the CD/Iot/Anything Else for the community featured projects?
  3. How does it tie with reps innovation fund. Or does it tie at all
    3.1 Is there any plan to support a group by knowledge and guidance from relevant teams along with reps innovation fund iff they have shown a MVP (and the relevant team is ok with it)

Thanks but I don’t think it’s so much a question of insight but whether enabling the general public to lead in automation of their diverse working processes is blocking serious discourse. What do you think?

Hey Rabimba,
let me try to answer some of your questions. Joining the Open Innovation group doesn’t change much right now in terms of IoT, CD and the Reps Innovation Fund.
The Innovation group has been working closely with the CD team and so they are aligned. Furthermore there has been a group coordinating the work between the CD team and the Participation team. Michael Henretty, Brian King, George and myself are doing that. So I wouldn’t expect any changes, we have been already working as one team.
The Reps Innovation Fund is part of what we call the Community Experimentation Launchpad and it was conceived and is being develop in close collaboration with both the CD team and the Open Innovation group. So once again, I only expect that collaboration to continue.

I hope that helps. If you have other questions let me know. This is pretty exciting for all!

1 Like

Thanks. That is reassuring.

My other question would have been about the "Community Experimentation Launchpad ". But you already answered it.